Susan Ruszala over at Follow the Reader has spoken what I have been thinking lately about digital books.
…but I’m also not satisfied with the ebook being an exact replica of the printed book. Even the page concept—you know what I’d like to see? Something that calculates how much longer, at my current pace, I have before finishing the book. Or, at the end, suggestions for how I can share my thoughts with other folks who have read the book, or other books I might download next.
The content should match the medium. If you are producing a book for print, you better make the best looking, traditional text that you can. Great cover, good blurb, excellent typesetting and all that jazz. But if you are offering it as a digital book, heed the words above. The needs of a digital book reader are far different from a paper book reader. Fonts are different, presentation is different and interactivity is important, especially if the book is read on a connected device or computer.
I plan on releasing my new novel, Null_Pointer on Kindle this Summer and believe me, it will not be the same experience as the paperback version. First of all, it will be cheaper. Second of all, it will have links and extra content. I will also be making the book available in free digital formats along with a slew of new content including a Writer’s Edition that will have extensive commentary on how the book was written.
Not to mention the community based web portal for the novel: http://nullpointer.ning.com, where you can interact with the author and other readers. Again, matching the content to the medium.