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An author contemplates the ebook mirage in a publishing desert

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A lot of excited theories have been going on for years about the future of books and authorship. The most popular one has been about ebooks and how they will soon completely replace printed books and possibly eliminate traditional bookshops and the traditional publishing process. But what does this portend for writers?
Ebooks do present astounding publishing opportunities for writers, whether established and aspiring. For the established writer, their books are made more easily accessible for instant download by anyone who has an internet link and at probably cheaper price all translating to bigger sales. For the aspiring author, reduced is the anxiety of waiting for another rejection letter from one publisher after another . Within minutes you can publish your own book for next to nothing in cash investment. However, publishing your book is a lot easier than selling. Getting people to actually buy your book is another profession altogether. Remember there are many millions of people like you all over the world who had also hit on the same brilliant idea of publishing their own book - many of such books not even worth downloading even for free.
I think one of the most important consideration is where you are offering your book . There are dozens of portals where ebooks are listed, the most prominent ones I think are Amazon (Kindle) , Barnes and Noble (Nook) and iTunes. All of these require proprietary readers/apps to download books for reading and also require either subscription or instant online payment for purchase. A lot of other other portals do list books without demanding purchase commitment; in other words you can download and read free. Many of these seek to present the advantage offered by alternative reading devices such as mobile phones and tablets and Java or open source Android operating environments , which is a cool way of blasting your publication all over the world . But where would the author serious about his work prefer to be listed and spend his time promoting his work ? In my opinion free books portals hardly cut it; my reckoning is that people who download free books are unlikely to commit time to read them and are unlikely to take the author seriously thereafter.The impression I get being the notion that: if it is free, it is probably worthless. Also if your book cannot be found on the major portals, and indeed if your book is not on iTunes it is unlikely to sell, just for the same reason. I think anyone who is not committed enough to get new software/hardware for reading a book purchased online by download is unlikely to have spare cash to buy a book. Does anyone have a contrary opinion?