As we reach the halfway point of 2014 and I prepare to look again at my reading goals for the year, I thought it might be an opportune time to check out my ebook stats! I have been keeping them since I first started reading eBooks in 2008, and it’s been awhile since I’ve done a write-up on them!
Why do I keep stats? Well, I like having a record of how many books I read, for one thing. And for another, I remember how when I first started reading eBooks, people used to remark on how expensive that must be. I wanted to prove them wrong! So I use my stats to keep tabs on how much my e-hobby has cost me over the years.
Here is what I do: I track two things—money spent on devices, and money spent on books. Then I divide them by number of books I’ve read. This gives me a cost-per-book calculation that tells me where I am at. I typically in my paper days would spend about $9.99 per book on half-off trade paperbacks, so as long as my cost per book is lower than that, I am coming out ahead.
One important detail—I do count only books I have READ. So, books I pay for but don’t read do not count, but books I obtain for free and do read count!
So…how am I doing?
1) Device Costs
I have gone through my share of devices, including a Sony and four iterations of Kindle. But I typically sell my devices to finance the cost of the new ones. I had the biggest loss going from the Kindle 2 to the Kindle 3—the Kindle 2 was almost $300, and I did not get nearly that much. But my latest device was free, and I sold the one which came before it, so all things said and done, I tend to come out pretty even.
My lifetime device spending (not counting my iPad, which I use primarily as a computer and don’t do long form reading on except for quick breaks here and there) is $240.
2) Book Spending
My highest was $1300 in 2010 (I blame Fictionwise coupon codes and a pre-agency pricing binge for this) and my lowest was $0, this year. I was averaging about $200 a year, post-agency, until my no-spend challenge this year. Total lifetime ebook spending is $3521.83.
3) Books Read
My highest was 102 books in 2010. I have lost a little speed since I met the Beloved, and my lowest year (not counting the partial year when I started) was 43 books. I am at 24 right now for the year, so on track to beat that!
Total books read to date is 428 books.
4) Cost Per Book
So, adding it all up and dividing by books read gives me a cost per book of $8.79. I can get it down to $8 even after 42 more books. Not bad!