Since the announcement of Lucky Day, I’ve been getting tweets, comments, Facebook messages, and emails from some folks who are upset that the story will only be available as an ebook. They seem to think this means that they can’t read it since they don’t own an e-reader and they’re upset about it.
First of all, let’s talk about why Lucky Day is e-only: Look, book publishing is good at many things, but publishing short works and making money at them is not one of them. Depending on how you set your fonts and margins, Lucky Day probably clocks in at around 80-100 pages. A nice little chunk of fiction, I think, but if my publisher were to actually print a book that was only 80-100 pages long, they’d still have to charge three or four bucks for it…and y’all would be pissed at paying that much money for such a relatively small chunk of story. As it is, by going e-only, we can offer you this dark, melancholy little morsel of Killers history for just $1.99. Not bad.
“But Barry!” someone in the back row says, “I don’t have an ereader, nor do I want an ereader, so you’re shutting me out! You’re preventing me from reading this story because I cannot afford a Kindle or an iPad, or because I don’t want to buy one.”
To which I say: Easy, there! Every single one of the ereader platforms provides entirely free software that you can use to read stories like Lucky Day on your computer or in a web browser. That’s right: Totally free software. If you know about Lucky Day in the first place, it’s because you read about it online. Which means you have access to a computer. Which means you can read Lucky Day. (Visit the Lucky Day page for a slew of links to the various free apps.)
I would never try to exclude any of my readers from reading something I’ve written!