I visit a message board for writers quite often. I've been reading alot of posts on there from writers telling other writers not to self publish on kindle or to get published through an ebook publisher. They think it is a career killer. They say that if you publish an ebook you will not be considered a real published author because you would not have an agent and your book will not be sold in a real bookstore in printed form.
They also claim that you will ruin your chances of getting published through the larger, traditional publishing houses because they will look at your sales records and be relucant to take you on if your ebook did not do very well. All very valid points. There is a risk to ebook publishing. There is also a risk to paper publishing. I could get an agent tomorrow, sign a fantastic deal with a huge publishing house, and then two years down the track when it goes on sale in a "real" book store I could end up selling hardly anything. Or I could sign with an epublisher and sell my book online for half the price of a printed book and possibly make some money. The chances of success and failure are the same.
It is wrong to label an ebook author as not a real author. It is arrogant, rude, and just plain old fashioned. An author published through an ebook publisher is still an author. An author who self publishes through kindle is still an author. No one has the right to take the title away from them if they do not like the route they took.
What is the difference between a book being sold in an online book store to it being sold in a "real" store? There is no difference. Both places have the book for sale. Both places are visited by people looking for books.
The ebook industry continues to grow each day. Personally, I think it is only a matter of time before everyone is reading ebooks. Look at the rise of devices like ipads and smart phones. People do not want to spend $66 on a hard back book and have to carry it around in their hand bag when they could get the e-version for over half the price and store it on their phone, ipod, etc...
I will be buying a kindle/ereader sometime soon. I have a huge bookcase at home that is over flowing with precious, much loved books. I have plans to buy another bookcase but I can't get another one after that I just do not have the room to store it somewhere. This is another reason why ebooks will slowly take over. Instead of having a bookcase cramed with books people can have all the books they want stored on one tiny, slim device. It saves space and is more practical. I will have a library in my purse which will be great. I hate it when I finish a book and forget to put a new one in my handbag to read the next day at work. There is nothing worse then being bookless as my mother and I call it!