Sony Reader: UK Ad Blitz

October 13, 2008

I had to go to the UK Times and this caught my eye off to the right side of the front page:


(Composite; I added the Times Online logo)

They’ve got a big ad-article over there: Sony Reader: A library at your fingertips

This is a bit dicey, I think:

For those who feel that a mobile library of 160 books may not be enough, the built-in MemoryStick DUO and SD Card slots can be used to increase the Reader’s capacity to around 13,000 titles.

Emphasis added by me.

Hey, Sony, how about a YouTube video proving that statement?

I’ve already had to caution against the hopes of someone in the Comments who wanted to drop twelve-thousand Gutenberg texts into a Sony Reader!

I don’t believe the Sony Reader can easily handle 12,000-13,000 eBooks. That’s not to disparage it (I don’t think an iPhone could do it, either; and on my XPed desktop, the 1.8GHz Celeron chokes on the My Pictures folder I have), just to set realistic limits.

Other than that minor skepticism, I’m gratified to see Sony doing some Net-visible advertising.

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Reference: Free eBook Sources

October 13, 2008

Via Twitter from top_book: Electronic Books (University of Texas at Austin)


Writer Mark Jeffrey Interview

October 13, 2008

Four Quadrant Zooming – An Interview with Max Quick Series Author Mark Jeffrey

Most of us have enough on our hands just keeping up with our day jobs. But Mark Jeffrey, author of the ultra popular Max Quick series of books and podcast audiobooks has two day jobs. His first podiobook, Max Quick 1: The Pocket and the Pendant, has received over 2 million downloads to date.

Emphasis added by me.

This is also interesting:

[T]he Max Quick Series has been marketed in many innovative ways — and was among the first in each case. And that can be directly traced to my ‘DNA as an Internet Guy’, if you will. I released the book first via Lulu.com in 2004 as a self-published paper book and as a downloadable PDF. In the beginning of 2005, ‘Max Quick 1: The Pocket and the Pendant’ was one of the very first podiobooks ever released (Scott Sigler’s Earthcore and Tee Morris’ MOREVI were the other two). I also released ‘Pocket’ on the Kindle. And most recently, ‘Pocket’ and ‘Max Quick 2: The Two Travelers’ were both released in the iPhone App Store as $5.99 ebook downloads.

This too:

FPP: How do you see technology changing the way consumers read and authors write over the next several years? Is the printed book in danger of extinction?

MJ: I don’t think so. Personally, I am still a big fan of being able to have a book on my bookshelf — and I think a lot of people feel the same way. Maybe if I were younger I would feel differently — I might be too old to adopt fully digital books.

However, I was shocked at how much I liked reading books on my iPhone. I wouldn’t have called that one. I am personally not a big fan of the Kindle or the other e-readers out there. Probably because I already have in my iPhone a multi-purpose device, and the Kindle is a one-trick pony. It seems ridiculous that I should have to purchase a bit of standalone hardware like that. My iPhone is already my email client, iPod, web browser, ebook reader, GPS device, camera, etc. It’s already in my pocket. You get the point. And I’ve sold way more iPhone copies of my books in the first two weeks than I’ve sold on the Kindle in the last year. So, I think the iPhone — or other multipurpose mobile device — crushes the Kindle. You heard it here first! You can’t be a one-trick pony hardware device anymore.

I also love the fact that I can go direct to a market of millions without a publisher as an unnecessary intermediary. I published directly to iPhone via Tom Peck’s wonderful e-reader application. Apple takes a cut, Tom takes a cut, but I — the artist — take the biggest cut. Now that is a proper world! And of course, I am very happy to see both Tom and Apple do very, very well. I want them to do well!

Emphasis added by me.

First of all, not everyone in the universe is going to buy an iPhone.

Second, not everyone in the universe is even going to buy a smartphone.

Third, the Sony Reader — and yes, even the abominable Kindle — have screens that are friendlier to hours of e-reading. (I wish I had a chart to display the deterioration of my eyesight from staring at an illuminated surface for hours and hours every day!) The screens are also larger and more book-ish.

Fourth, yes, I would expect more eBooks to be sold via iPhone right now. Perhaps even for years to come.

Fifth, I’m with you there on direct publishing!

There’s more of interest to read there too. I didn’t want to excerpt every good bit.

I’m not pleased that the Sony Reader wasn’t mentioned. Perhaps he’ll consider it (he should read this).

He’s doing direct publishing. That is the future for writers.

— via Twitter from KatMeyer


Reference: Search For PDF Files

October 13, 2008

Via Twitter from sell_ebooks: PDF Search Engine


Sony Reader Publishing: Crucial Information

October 13, 2008

The ever-effervescent KatMeyer (who torments me with Hello Kitty links!) sent along a link via Twitter to an article about design in the era of digital distribution. But that wasn’t the article that caught my eye, it was the next one.

This one:

Go here and jump to page 36.

From that, I have extracted the paragraph that pertains to publishing for the Sony Reader:

This is information I’ve never before seen published.

Prior to this revelation, the entry point for the Sony Reader seemed to be undergoing the ministrations of the Perseus Book Group’s new Constellation service for small publishers.

I haven’t inquired about the details of that service because this is supposed to be the Age of Disintermediation. Why contract with a service bureau if you can do the job yourself? If a small (and I mean very small!) publisher can already afford Quark XPress, picking up Adobe InDesign for ePub is trivial (note to said publishers: bang on Quark to add ePub features!).

A Google search brings up this bit of background info, pilfered from a profile she created:

Professional Interests & Affiliations
Random House, New Media, Digital Media, Publishing, New York, NY, Online Publishing, eBooks, Books, Electronic Publishing, IDPF, Pace University, eReader.com, Motricity, eRights, Digital Rights

Biography
Currently, I am the Director of New Media at Random House and work very closely on Random House’s eBook program. Previously I was at Motricity’s eReader.com, the world’s largest eBook retailer, as the Manager of Publisher Relations and Marketing. Before then, I was promoted to Manager of ePublishing at the Time Warner Book Group (now Hachette Book Group USA) where I helped to implement a cost effective production model using XML that dramatically cut eBook production costs. I first entered the ePublishing business at Warren Adler’s Stonehouse Press while a student at Pace University in their Masters of Publishing Program.

I have been involved in the electronic publishing business for most of my career and have been an IDPF member for just as long. Plainly spoken, I love this industry and am committed to see it grow and develop.

As noted, my experience encompasses a vast spectrum of topics in the industry such as production, coding, marketing, eRights, sales with a special emphasis on building strong relationships with our fellow colleagues and competitors.

She needs to update that, now being at Sony.

Steve Haber said the day will come when Sony’s eBook Store is open to direct publishing. I’m tempted to say it can’t happen soon enough — but I’d rather have it done right instead of rushed.

I found one other interesting, yet strange, thing. It seems Kelley Allen remains in New York City (or was still here as of Spring 2008):

“Everything?” I’d be surprised if it contained anything I haven’t already come across on my own. No knock on Kelley, her course is probably a concentrated form of what I’ve had to spend much more time flailing around to find — which now includes finding her.