Thursday, November 25, 2010

How to Read Dementia Books for Less

This post may seem to have nothing to do with caregiving, yet it has everything to do with it if it can get more of you to read some free samples of "Dementia Diary, A Caregiver's Journal," at Smashwords (

What, you may ask is "Smashwords?" This website with the funny name has grown into one of the world's premier e-book publishing and distribution sources. It is a boon for readers and writers alike. Talented new writers, freed from the artificial constraints of the traditional publishing industry with its partiality toward celebrity authors, can now share their art with readers eager to sample budding talent.

E-books are selling like hotcakes. The latest industry figures show that recent traditional bookstore sales were down about 8%, while e-book sales were up over 150%. It's a veritable publishing revolution.

And I'm happy to be part of the revolution with my best selling memoir, "Dementia Diary, A Caregiver's Journal," which Smashwords readers are discovering and downloading in ever increasing numbers. Thank you.

Some books are available totally free on the Smashwords site—and up to 50% of many books can be sampled free by readers before making their purchase decisions. Most books are priced far below the bookstore price for print editions. What a great way for readers to discover new favorite authors!

And these e-books can be read in every e-book format and on every commercially available e-book reader. In fact, it is not even necessary to have an e-reader since Smashwords books can be downloaded and read right on your computer.

True, one of the downsides of the e-book "revolution" is that there may be some unedited and poor quality writing among the selections. But the availability of free sampling eliminates risk for readers. If you don't like the first free 20% to 50%, you don't have to buy the book. There's no longer any reason to shell out big bucks for a printed book only to put it aside at home because it disappoints, with no refund available.

There are already tens of thousands of books available at Smashwords in every genre and category. So whatever your special interests, they are well covered.

Shameless commerce department: I can't ignore this opportunity to plug my own work at

"Dementia Diary, A Caregiver's Journal"—A portable support group for caregivers
"Thirsty Planet"—An adventure novel of global warming
"Bard Memorial Hospital"—Vignettes and poetry about hospital drama
"A Question of Judgment"—A short story about a misdiagnosed infant

"A Question of Judgment" is totally free. Why? Because it will introduce readers to a risk free way to sample my writing and, if they like it, they may choose to read my other books.

So Smashwords is good news for readers and for writers.To find out more about the Smashwords site, take a look at the following Smashwords slideshow: