Inkwell: Authors and Artists
Ed Ward (captward) Wed 24 Aug 11 12:49
In this respect digital publishing may be the killer app for poetry. Reading a whole book is like eating the entire box of chocolates (or bag of potato chips). Little bites here and there help you appreciate what is going on a lot more clearly. Hell, I might wind up appreciating poetry if this keeps up!
Gail Williams (gail) Wed 24 Aug 11 12:57
Back to music and text. To me a huge problem is that reading speed can vary and music is time-based. How do you decide how fast I will read?
Ed Ward (captward) Wed 24 Aug 11 13:13
I didn't look at that because my Times sub has run out. Is this a book that plays music as you read it? If so, would someone help me write malware for it? Don't make me go off on a ubiquity-is-killing-music rant/drift!
Joe Cottonwood (joecot) Wed 24 Aug 11 19:36
I've recently released a novel that incorporates music into the story. In fact, I tell people the novel has five characters: four 13-year-old kids and one 70-year-old guitar (which is occasionally used as an assault weapon). The music element is largely lost on the printed page but is part of the audio podcast. So today I wrote to the Booktrack people suggesting my novel for their use as an eBook with sound. Awaiting reply.
Joe Cottonwood (joecot) Wed 24 Aug 11 21:51
And a quick response from one Josh Hirschland: Joe, Thanks for the e-mail. We greatly appreciate your feedback and think that what you're doing is interesting. At the present time, we are not looking to do audiobooks where the text is read aloud; rather, we are focused on creating an aural environment that enhances the reading experience through music, sound, and ambient audio. However, we appreciate your interest and hope that you will continue to stay in touch. Thanks, Josh He missed my point about the music-as-character. I'm afraid they just want to provide background music. Too bad.
Ed Ward (captward) Thu 25 Aug 11 02:03
Yeah, your idea sounds a lot more interesting.
those Andropovian bongs (rik) Thu 25 Aug 11 05:55
Sure does. And the ebook guy sounds like he has blinders on.
Jane Hirshfield (jh) Thu 25 Aug 11 08:45
He was reading too fast and didn't take in what you were proposing. Too bad. In general, I prefer reading without background music of any kind--this soundtrack idea seems to me like canned laughter on a sitcom, telling you what's funny and how funny, in case you don't respond accurately. But I can see how others, who do read with music on anyhow, might enjoy it. I sure wouldn't want it to be the only available option. But there's a huge subset movement in poetry of reading poems with musical accompaniment--Anne Sexton often performed with a band, so it goes pretty far back now. Allen Ginsberg played his harmonium, Robert BLy enlists sitar and tabla players, Robert Pinsky is performing with jazz players, I heard Seamus Heaney do something magnificent with the Irish pipe player Liam O'Flynn. Against my own biasses, I have to say, it's often really effective. But it's also deliberate, and chosen by the original author in these cases, not imposed by someone else. So I am skeptical about the SoundTrack idea, but, well, why not? People will either like it or they won't, and they don't have to get the book that way, or presumably can turn off the volume if they don't like what happens. Diane, I'm really pleased to know that the formatting is working out well for your e-book of COME, THIEF. Knopf only just started doing this at all, because of formatting issues, so it's great to know that they've done a good job with the experiment. I also read poems one or two at a time, you know. They are not meant to be read cover to cover--they weren't written as a book, they were written one at a time. But when I like a poet, I don't ever put the book away until I've read the whole thing. And if I really like the work, it stays by my bed and keeps getting picked up and re-read. It's lovely to think though of my poems being with you wherever you go--a portable bedside library!
Ed Ward (captward) Tue 30 Aug 11 10:35
Dunno if anyone's still reading this conversation, but two things. First, I finished one book and started another on the Adobe Digital Editions reader. It was real easy to read the first one, and (except for the fact that U Chi Press needs a proofreader) very easy to bookmark and come back later. But when I finished it, and still had reading time in the evening, I picked up the second book and...every single one of my preferences had to be reinstated. It didn't move smoothly from one book to the next, and it took me five minutes to get the damn thing into readability. It's not a very intuitive UI, in my experience. No wonder it's not used all that much. A second thing was this little item from a newsletter my agent reads: Quotation of the Day 'The Best Writing and Reporting Is in Books and Kindle Singles' <http://www.shelf-awareness.com/issue.html?issue=1546#m13130> Carr's a smart cookie.
David Wilson (dlwilson) Tue 30 Aug 11 11:43
This is a great discussion. I hope it continues.
Jennifer Powell (jnfr) Tue 30 Aug 11 13:23
Me too. I've really enjoyed it.
Tuppy Glossop (mcdee) Tue 30 Aug 11 17:39
Me too. I've learned from it. Now I just have to figure out what to write!
(fom) Tue 30 Aug 11 20:57
>U Chi Press needs a proofreader University of Chicago? Huh.
Ed Ward (captward) Wed 31 Aug 11 02:00
Both books -- the Judge Dee book in particular -- were minefields of errors, and I think we're going to see more of this as these formats catch on. Of course, I haven't seen either of these books "in the flesh," and they might be just as bad in the paper edition. A friend of a friend for some reason gave his latest novel away to his friends in numerous e-book formats, and somehow I got it onto my computer Kindle app without getting it over onto my phone. That'll be my next attempt at e-booking, since reading on the laptop was an interesting change (well, except for how hot it got), but today I have to go to the library anyway, and may very well come back with a, like, book book or two.
Ted Newcomb (tcn) Wed 31 Aug 11 04:49
Big smile! I just checked out two actual books from the library --- went with my grandkids to help them pick out books and could not help myself. Think these are the first two books I've checked out of a library in over 10 years. They are sitting on my book table like ancient artifacts.
Tuppy Glossop (mcdee) Wed 31 Aug 11 07:20
Really? I typically have about 20 books checked out at any given time - they're sorta my "new reading" shelf.
David Wilson (dlwilson) Wed 31 Aug 11 07:23
Me too. and since the county library system has their computer programed to alert you 3 days before your books are due, and you can renew online, I'm a solid citizen.
Ed Ward (captward) Wed 31 Aug 11 07:32
My library is about 200 books donated by mostly elderly, mostly British people, so I do envy you folks.
Peter Richardson (richardsonpete) Wed 31 Aug 11 09:55
I'd love to see a flourishing library system to complement the growth of ebooks and other digital publications. If publishers were reasonably sure they could sell two or three thousand copies of their best books to libraries, they could afford to do a lot more quality fiction and nonfiction (in whatever format). Library sales don't come back as returns, which is key. I have access to two fine libraries--UC Berkeley and Marin County, which does a great job in the categories I care about. I've never wished to own all the books I want to read, so I'm more than willing to support those and other libraries. And as I say, more of them would really help the industry as well as the communities they serve.
Jennifer Powell (jnfr) Wed 31 Aug 11 10:05
I have recently been reading on my Kindle some fiction that I have read before, years ago, and I've found entire pages jumbled up. It's clear they're dumping the old stuff into ebook formats without doing actual proofreading or edits, at least in some cases.
David Wilson (dlwilson) Wed 31 Aug 11 12:47
Sounds like the CD conversion from vinyl albums.
David Wilson (dlwilson) Mon 19 Sep 11 05:33
New sources for publishing ebooks: <http://www.nytimes.com/2011/09/19/business/media/in-e-books-publishing-houses- have-a-rival-in-news-sites.html?nl=todaysheadlines&emc=tha210>
Ed Ward (captward) Sat 24 Sep 11 09:20
I just got a notice from Accounts Receivable at Amazon that my first check is on its way: $126.96. Not much, but something. And the first royalties I've ever gotten! If you haven't bought a copy yet, here it is: <http://www.amazon.com/Bar-End-Regime-ebook/dp/B005DYLXXG/ref=sr_1_1ie=UTF8&qid =1311376462&sr=8-1>
Ted Newcomb (tcn) Sat 24 Sep 11 11:13
Congrats, keep em coming
Jennifer Powell (jnfr) Tue 27 Sep 11 17:33
I think that's fantastic.
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