The digital future still is a mystery if you don’t publish “immersive reading” – The Shatzkin Files

An interesting read about what may be the future?

I have made previous mention of my notion that what has been one very cohesive trade book industry would “trifurcate”: break into at least three distinct businesses: 1) books that are straight narrative text intended for immersive reading; 2) adult books that are not straight text, either very chunkable (like cookbooks or travel books) or highly illustrated; and 3) children’s books. Admittedly, even this is an oversimplification.

This conjecture is built on the reality that we’ve learned how to move immersive reading from paper to screen in a way that satisfies the consumer. A pretty simple technological trick — “reflowing” the text so that it adjusts to the screen size alloted to it — makes the text “work” across a wide range of devices and reader software. There are definitely differences among Kindle and Nook and Kobo and Google and iBooks and they don’t offer precisely the same outputs and features on their own devices or on iOS or Android, but the differences are subtle and apparently most people are comfortable with the various consumption experiences.

So relatively simple conversion from the version prepared for print, which can even be done through automated services like Smashwords or through tools now being offered by The Atavist and Vook (and others), and are handled within the workflows of many publishers at a trivial financial cost, delivers an alternative to the print version of a book that is commercially viable. It isn’t costly, it isn’t complicated, and the person who formerly read her favorite novelist or subject in print could switch to device reading with relatively little

Read the rest here:

The digital future still is a mystery if you don’t publish “immersive reading” – The Shatzkin Files.

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