Libraries, Publishers And We Take A Day Off

Do you read books using a device such as a Kindle or an iPad?  Or do you prefer an actual book?  I love to read and it doesn’t matter to me how I read the book.  When traveling in the RV books on my iPad weigh a whole lot less than a stack of actual books. I always have several books loaded on the iPad when traveling by plane for the same reason–the ebooks weigh less.  I buy ebooks and used actual books plus I utilize two library systems for borrowing ebooks.  Today when I attempted to place a book on hold at the Pima County Library System I received this message–

Whistling Past the Graveyard by Susan Crandall

Your holds position: #1 on 0 copies

Note:The license for this title has expired. Your hold will start moving forward if the library purchases the title again.

Libraries in the past purchased ebooks from publishers and owned those ebooks forever as they do with purchased actual books.  Libraries pay publishers double and sometimes triple the price you and I would pay for an ebook.  Libraries should be able to keep those purchased ebooks forever. Instead, publishers are eliminating the “perpetual access” model and going to a two year access model.  Libraries will have to keep purchasing the ebooks over and over again if they want to maintain a copy in their system. This particular book, Whistling Past The Graveyard was published by Gallery Books and I’m thinking this publisher has also instituted a limited access model.

Publishers are mistaken when thinking if we can’t get the book from the library, we will buy it new. I for one won’t be buying brand new hardback books and rarely do I buy a brand new paperback.  I don’t even buy full price ebooks–I watch for sales and I borrow from the library.  Publishers are not only hurting libraries but will be hurting their own businesses.

But the real kicker is beginning November 1, 2019, Macmillan Publishers will allow libraries to purchase only one copy of each new eBook title for the first eight weeks after a book’s release.  To put this rule in perspective the King County Library System in Washington blogged the following: “Libraries maintain ‘Purchase to Holds’ ratios to minimize wait times for popular titles. As a large library system, KCLS maintains a 5:1 ratio. That means for every five holds placed on a title, KCLS purchases one copy to ensure a maximum wait time of three months. To illustrate, after months on KCLS’ Top 5 eBooks list, the bestseller Where the Crawdads Sing by Delia Owens still has 1,848 holds on 372 copies. Educated: A Memoir by Tara Westover has 1,089 holds on 358 copies. If KCLS had been limited to only one digital copy of each of these high-demand titles and then had to wait eight weeks before being able to purchase more, the impact would be dramatic. Patrons could conceivably wait years rather than months for their eBook.”

To lodge my protest about this unfair and greedy practice I went to the following website, #eBooksForAll  and signed the American Library Association’s petition.  I will also not be purchasing any ebooks published by Macmillan Publishers.

On Thursday I bathed and clipped Ms. Emmi, painted a door and who knows what else! On Friday I mowed the grass/weeds and in the evening we went to Dan’s for dinner.  Louanne is missing in action–but will arrive soon.  Dan is a great cook and we had a wonderful time catching up.  The Cowboy has been working hard–too hard–Friday he worked all day installing some duct work above the ceiling joists and was just worn out.

So, Saturday we played, driving north into the mountains above the town of Safford.  We reached an elevation of over 10,000 feet and it was dang chilly up there! We even found a waterfall and a lake! Beautiful drive which was steep enough with tight switchbacks to have me clinging to the arm rest and squeaking at times!

The Pinaleno Mountains have seen many fires.

From our house in the valley below and south of the Pinaleno Mountains we can see an observatory on the highest peak–Graham Peak.

My painted door–it was a hideous yellow color when we purchased this house and I’m just now getting rid of that yellow. It’s more of a mushroom color than this photo shows.  Sunday the Cowboy hung drywall in the new hot water tank location and I went to church.  A young couple originally from Arizona spoke this morning–they have been missionaries in New Guinea for five years. They have two young boys and are on an extended furlough in the States. In spite of being so young (probably less than 30 years old) the man was very articulate and a great speaker.

After lunch I tackled house cleaning–as you read above, the Cowboy installed duct work.  Before this installation, we were just leaving the door open between the two houses so the cool air from the evaporative cooler would circulate into the guest house.  And all the construction dust also circulated–the guest house where we live was a mess but I refused to clean until the duct work was in and we could close the door.  Now we have a clean house–thank goodness–I was ready!





18 thoughts on “Libraries, Publishers And We Take A Day Off

  1. Thank you for sharing the information about e-books and limited purchase of books. I signed the petition. I feel as though I travel to your part of the world through your narrative and pictures!


  2. You know I still read paper, although I do keep a short library on my ipad “just in case”! I’ll purchase both books mentioned for my winter reading, and forward to you when done – It will be much quicker than your library! 🙂 And do read “Where the Crawdads sing” – an amazing story and her first novel!


  3. I love reading, both paper and e. I have a kindle and purchase or borrow from Amazon. I had heard about the change coming to Libraries copies, but hadn’t understood just how it was going to affect readers.


  4. Interesting information on ebooks. We both would rather read actual books but when traveling ebooks are the way to go. Sometimes here at our local library I will get on the ebook wait list of a new release because it moves faster than the hard copy since they purchase more ebooks. So I can understand why the publishers are reacting the way they are. On one of James Patterson’s new books I’m on the list for, the library has 35 copies. It’s a struggle from both sides.

    Lovely photos of your ride. I really enjoy the higher elevations.

    I like the color of your door now!


    1. Your library has 35 copies of an ebook and they paid probably $40-60 for each of those ebooks. I would think that’s enough of a markup for publishers–that’s way more than libraries pay for hardback books. And if you purchased the ebook version of James Patterson’s book it would cost you probably $15. The Montana library system has an amazing collection of ebooks but this new policy by publishers could be the end of that collection. I too enjoy the higher elevations and their temps although we did have to eat our lunch sitting in the truck–too chilly even to sit in the sun at a picnic table!


  5. I read e-books, hard bound and paperbacks…. whatever. But if I buy a book it’s usually a field guide and I want a hard copy. (although we do have bird guides on Ipads). I have library cards (yes… some libraries still have cards) in in 3 different states and one of my earliest memories as a child is the book mobile coming every two weeks to our little town in Ohio. I’ll be signing that petition…. when people become so greedy that reading and the availability of obtaining books is affected it will become even a sadder world than it is now.


    1. You are so right Sharon–sad indeed! I have two library cards–actual cards. I have loved to read even as a child–the school librarian couldn’t keep me in books. In my opinion this is only an issue of greed, period.


  6. I mostly read e-books because of eyesight and painful hands. We already wait a considerable time for new books because most of the libraries in our state, with the exception of Omaha & Lincoln, are part of a state-wide consortium subscribed to Overdrive. I’ve signed the petition and shared it on my Facebook. Hopefully Macmillan will see the backlash and rethink their plan and cancel it before other publishers get the same idea. Thank you for posting this.


  7. Signed the petition as they have gone too far now. They do have to make money, but not at the expense of our libraries. I read about five books a week so the ebooks are the only way for me to enjoy them on the road. Now that we’ll have a winter base I’m looking forward to having “real” books again – to read in front of the fire place! That looks like a beautiful drive we’ll have to check out soon.


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