I sometimes think I’m smart. People sometimes act like I’m smart. Sometimes, I end up believing this myself. However, then something happens that makes me realize that I’m not as smart as I think I am.
For instance, I co-edit a book blog called Eleven and a Half Years of Books with Kimberly Campbell Moore. The central focus of this blog is for Kim and I to go through the books listed in The Top Ten: Writers Pick Their Favorite Books by J. Peder Zane and review them. As such, I have to buy a lot of books.
Mind you, I already buy a lot of books. I often run out of space, and money. As such, when I picked my most recent batch, I picked a crap ton of books that should all be in the public domain. The idea was that I could get free ebook versions of these that I could read on my Kindle and not have to buy actual copies.
Sorry, Kim. I know you don’t have space or money to spare either, but this is what I did.
However, I failed to take something into account. Translations are separately copyrightable from the original work. Thus, even though many of the books I’d picked were no longer protected by copyright, the originals were in other languages (French, Chinese, Japanese, Italian, and so on). Many did not have translated versions that were available in free ebook form because they had only been translated into English within the period of copyright or had been recently retranslated into English and no one was going to bother putting out an ebook version of the older style translation.
Either way, no free ebooks for many of these. Thus, I not only had to read old books, I often had to pay for the privilege and figure out where to put the physical books.
I suppose that’s okay, given that I prefer physical books, but it thwarted my plan a bit…as well as taking up space and money I could have used on other authors I more intended to read. Either way, I didn’t think this through as completely as I should have. Hence, proof I’m not as smart as I think I am sometimes.