Books Have a Lifecycle
    nature of books

    Writers, editors, librarians, readers and publishers all value the enduring nature of books. Authors hope their novels will become classics or the seminal authority of a subject.
    Ideas do endure, but books deteriorate, pages fall out and information becomes dated. All of us in the publishing industry have a responsibility to ensure the retirement of any book is handled in an environmentally responsible way. Even before your book goes to print, do you know what will happen to it at the end of its life cycle? How can your ensure your book will not end up in a landfill?
    What will happen to the books you do not sell? Is there a school or library that can use them? How will the books weeded from library and bookstore shelves be handled? Do you know if your publisher, bookstore or library donates books or recycles them? No one wants to see books in dumpsters or landfills. We would like for books to remain on shelves forever, but any walk through a thrift or second hand bookstore is a clear indication that books are given away all the time. When those books don’t sell, what happens to them? There are now processes that turn printed material into carpet pads, garden mulch or building insulation. How are you making certain your literary contribution is not harming the environment? What is the life cycle of your book?

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    1 Comment

    1. This very thought occurred to me numerous times regarding magazines and newpapers, but books! *gasp* in a landfill? One obvious solution is reading books on electronic sources. My Kindle holds an entire shelf worth of books and I carry it with ease. Of course, there is an increased environmental impact with plastic and the battery than with paper and cardboard. How do we lessen our footprint?

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