A while ago I published "Adaptive vs. Responsive Design: What They Are, Why They Matter," and immediately received some follow-up questions about HTML5. Here's a very quick explanation: For the last fifteen years (since 1997, actually), we've been stuffing all sorts of new content onto the web … [Read more...] about HTML 5: What It Is And Why It Matters
A couple of years ago, I worked on a project that included building a recommendation engine for books. It seemed like a worthy goal until I looked at my bedside table, which was covered with books I hadn't read yet. And the floor around the table. And my home office desk. And my desk at … [Read more...] about Is Discovery a Problem for Readers?
Update 2/19/2014: After I posted this, a friend pointed me toward a post that delineated the costs of the various steps toward self-publishing. Developmental editing costs $45-$65 per hour. The minimum cost for 280 typescript pages is $2,520. Maximum could be as much as $18,000 depending how much … [Read more...] about Publishing and Self-Publishing: The First Copy
Science fiction writer Charlie Stross recently wrote an interesting post called "Why I Don't Self-Publish." It isn't necessarily designed to discourage writers from self-publishing, but it does show why the process can be daunting -- and why the publishers expect the lion's share of all revenue. … [Read more...] about What Publishers Do
A new format for books priced at less than a tenth of the current hardcover price? It'll destroy publishing, right? Well, it didn't the first time. In 1939, Pocket Books launched the paperback, a 25-cent version of books that usually sold for $2.75. Critics said that no one would buy. Some said … [Read more...] about Creative Disruption: Introducing the Paperback (1939)
In 1974, former World Bank Economist Anne Krueger wrote a famous article defining "rent-seeking." The term, of course, stems from the practice of gaining ownership of land and forcing tenants to pay rent. As an economic principle, the idea is that rather than creating new wealth through growth, some … [Read more...] about eBooks, Copyright and “Rent-Seeking”
In one of the digital media courses I teach, I find that my old media students often balk at one of the axioms of digital content: by publishing something you are essentially releasing it into the wild. Digital content doesn't sit still -- it travels, interacts with other content and competes for … [Read more...] about Your Digital Content Has A Life of Its Own
Dear Author's Jane Litte, romance blogger of the first rank, published an interesting take on IPG's public spat with Amazon, in which the Internet retailer removed the "Buy" buttons from IPG's books and IPG responded with a request to the public to stop buying from Amazon. Jane's response was … [Read more...] about Dear Author’s Letter to Publishers — “What Have You Done For Me Lately?”