Ben Tanzer’s book 99 Problems: Essays About Running and Writing is available as an e-book, with a twist. On his site, readers who want to download the book have several pay options, or rather amount-to-pay options. “I’d like to pay: $5 – $10 – $20 – a different amount – nothing.” That’s right – “nothing” is an option. Regardless of what amount you pay, or don’t, you’ll get the full-length version of the book. (Kindle users have an Amazon flat rate fee of $5.) The book is also licensed under Creative Commons – a growing culturally conscious way to share works with others. It will be interesting to see how Tanzer’s book does, in terms of readers and payers, and how the new-millennium old question goes, “If you give it to them for free, will they pay for it?” It perhaps even more of interest to writers – even if it’s free, will they read it?
Book Blurb: “Why is it that so many full-time writers seem to be full-time runners as well, and what is it about each activity that seems to fuel the other? In 99 Problems, Chicago author Ben Tanzer tackles this very question, penning a series of essays completed after a string of actual runs across the United States during the winter of 2009, cleverly combining the details of the run itself with what new insights he gained that day regarding whatever literary story he was working on at the time; and along the way, Tanzer also offers up astute observations on fatherhood, middle-age, and the complications of juggling traditional and artistic careers, all of it told through the funny and smart filter of pop-culture that has made this two-time novelist and national performance veteran so well-loved. A unique and fascinating new look at the curious relationship between physical activity and creative intellectualism, 99 Problems will have you looking at the arts in an entirely new way, and maybe even picking up a pair of running shoes yourself.”