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Dear Friends in Carving -

Welcome to the January/February 2001 issue of the Woodc@rver Online Magazine.


Editorial: ABook Is A Book Is A Book

This issue of WOM contains a first: reviews of five "books" - three traditional print volumes, an electronic book downloaded from the web, and an electronic "book" on CD-ROM. Electronic books, like electronic magazines before them, are the coming thing. As a confirmed bibliophile, however, I must admit I look on the latter two "books" with mixed feelings.

Now, truth be told, there are clear advantages to electronic books. Downloading the electronic version of Feather Carving took just a few minutes. A CD-ROM "book" takes up little space. The Book of Kells CD-ROM contains video and zoom effects just not possible in print media, and I will prize the CD for year to come.

The electronic book clearly had it's advantages, particularly in presenting the Arts. We may certainly expect to see many more in the future and like any reasonable person, I will embrace electronic books for the good and useful things they can provide.

The essence of a book is not the media - it's the thoughts and ideas, images and meaning. It really doesn't matter if the media is ink on paper or electrons on a screen - a book is a book is a book.

Now, having said that, this might seem a trifle odd for the editor of an electronic magazine - but still . . . there's a part of me that says a "real" book is not electrons on a screen, but is ink and paper and cloth, something you hold in your hand, use your fingers to turn the pages, something that requires a physical bookmark. I can still hear my paternal grandparents, professional librarians both, say to me " . . . and NEVER dog-ear the page, young man. . . "

- Matt Kelley

This issue is once again chock-a-block with all kinds of interesting articles, including:

Once again I'd like to thank all those who helped with this issue of WOM, and if you, the readers, have comments, suggestion or ideas for future articles, I'd be very happy to receive them all. Just email me at Editor@carverscompanion.com.

Carve On!

Matt Kelley, Editor