I was a really miserable human being last week. Life has been a series of ongoing emotionally draining events: my father's death, cataract surgery, losing my job, next door neighbours who have no respect for other people's property or sleeping patterns etc.
On top of that I have become increasingly unhappy with the Australian billionaire run media, where Murdoch, Stokes and Packer seem hell bent on Tony Abbott becoming Prime Minister after October. The less fortunate in society might as well slash their wrists. Nothing will be done about global warming, nothing will be done to improve the condition of Aborigines, refugees will be locked away on islands for years, and the middle class whose primary news sources were Murdoch's papers or Channel 7's news, leading them to vote for Abbott, will have to spend much more of their incomes on services that were formally provided by the government. The only people who will be better off are the rich.
As this is a writing blog I have to mention that parallel importation of books will probably be allowed, leading to an even quicker demise of the Australian publishing industry than ebooks will probably cause. Abbott will also probably use the budget deficit as a reason to eliminate most arts funding (they are all lefties in the art's community after all).
So basically, I feel that Australia is about to be fucked over by as much as my life has been. I have felt like just giving up. What's the point anymore, I feel like shit and I just want to stay in bed all day. Give up swimming, give up gardening, give up trying to find work that has any meaning at all, but the one thing I didn't even consider giving up was writing: I had my best writing week in over a month last week.
I am still editing the novella, but it is much more of a redrafting as subtle changes, like my main character deciding to exit by the back door instead of the front door in a smoke filled house, have changed the way the novella will get to its ending.
It's been a few weeks since I checked the prices of the top 100 bestselling kindle books and things have changed drastically. There were no $2 ebooks, when on average they previously made up 30% of the top 100. That might sound like good news to optimists but it isn't. There were 12 ebooks, as compared to the usual half dozen in the $2 to $3.50 price range, but there were a massive 29 free ebooks, as compared to the previous average of three. Does this mean that a lot of authors have given up trying to make any money out of their ebooks or that consumers have decided that even $2 is too much?
In Jason Steger's Bookmarks column in The Age he reports that Steve Jobs says that the ibooks store already accounts for 22% of the ebook market, with 2.5 ebooks, on average, being sold for every ipad. I wonder how much those ibooks cost. I tried to have a look at the ibooks store today but I think I might need to buy an ipad and download the application before I can, and there's not a chance in hell I will be doing that.
In the same article Sony estimates that the ebook market will overtake the print market in five years.
The world is ending, run for the hills.