I am very grateful to the electronic world for making my life easier, but there is something about holding a book - the smell and the world of association. Even when e-books are perfected, as they surely will be, it will be like being in bed with a very well-made robot rather than a warm, soft, human being whom you love.
when I walk into an apartment with books on the shelves, books on the bedside tables, books on the floor, and books on the toilet tank, then I know what I would see if I opened the door that says Private - grownups keep out: a children sprawled on the bed, reading.
Some day, as soon as a book is printed it will be simultaneously put into digital form. That will be a wonderful research tool, but it will never substitute for holding the book. I feel certain that at least within my lifetime, everyone will still be going to the bookstore and buying printed books. Thank God I'll die before I have to worry about whether the printed book itself will disappear. That's something I don't want to live to see.
It is a truism of epistolary psychology that, for example, a Christmas thank-you note written on December 26 can say any old thing, but if you wait until February, you are convinced that nothing less than Middlemarch will do.
Muses are fickle, and many a writer, peering into the voice, has escaped paralysis by ascribing the creative responsibility to a talisman: a lucky charm, a brand of paper, but most often a writing instrument. Am I writing well? Thank my pen. Am I writing badly? Don't blame me blame my pen. By such displacements does the fearful imagination defend itself.