But what they’re also is a headache. And we don’t say that just because of the noxious fumes some give off (we did buy them in college, so can speak from experience). But because it bothers us when people want to make a quick buck off some author’s hard work. No qualms, no guilt.
But they can still be forgiven. At least they’re earning an honest living.
It is the reader, people like me and you, who must think twice before picking up a reprint. What if you were to write and publish a book tomorrow, and not get paid for it?
Today is World Book and Copyright Day. What better day than today to pledge never to buy reprints, ever again.
But how did World Book and Copyright Day come into being?
Tradition goes that in 1923 booksellers in Spain decided to honour Miguel de Cervantes who died that day. This went on to become part of
the celebrations of St George’s Day where men give women roses and women gift them books (what, women didn’t read books then?)
In 1995, more than 70 years later, UNESCO decided to turn this into the World Book and Copyright Day since this date is also the anniversary of the birth and death of William Shakespeare, the death of Miguel de Cervantes, Inca Garcilaso de la Vega and Josep Pla, the birth of Maurice Druon, Vladimir Nabokov, Manuel Mejía Vallejo and Halldór Laxness.
Make the pledge now. What if you were to really write and publish a book tomorrow, and never get paid?