Wednesday, November 25, 2015

What we can learn from scholarly E-books

Recently I attended a University of Illinois seminar on digital advances in the humanities. The seminar, courtesy of a collaborative publication series, “Women in Print: Value-added E-books and New Digital Collaborations.”  It was co-sponsored by our University of Illinois Press, the University Library, The Rare Book Room, the National Center for Supercomputing Applications, and several other departments. The seminar featured several specialists from these units, plus History and Graphic Design, talking about how to enhance materials in the humanities. 

For scholarly publications, some of the issues were how to put transcriptions side-by-side with original manuscript facsimiles and make the web interface user-friendly. Speakers discussed typefaces, amount of white space on a page, and free distribution of scholarly materials using multiple online channels.

All this stuff is relevant to the production of mysteries.
As authors, we usually count on our publishers to make decisions about the appearance of our books online. The publisher chooses font, alignment, background, scrolling options, etc. As consumers, these decisions have consequences: how tired your eyes get from scrolling or flipping pages or how frustrated you are when a digital platform doesn’t work the way you expect.

A note on cover design (especially if you design your own): make sure it is legible in thumbnail size! That is how potential readers see it first, until they make the decision to click on the cover for a larger version.

Last but not least, make sure you know what your book looks like on a smartphone vs. a laptop vs. a tablet.

The other takeaway for me from this seminar was a better understanding of how graphic design and electronic formatting can make or break a book, non-fiction or fiction, and why digital books won’t necessarily be much cheaper than print if you employ professionals.


Jacqueline Seewald said...


Thanks for sharing this valuable information with us. I have friends that write for this market as well as fiction. I'll let them know about your article.

Susan Oleksiw said...

There is so much to consider in setting up an ebook. I'd considered the readability of the thumbnail cover design, but not the design on other readers. Thanks for sharing this very useful information.

Susan said...

Sarah, thanks for the very practical suggestions. I'm just starting to wander into an ebook project, and all of these ideas are now on my list.

cityspideyseo said...

CitySpidey is India's first and definitive platform for hyper local community news, RWA Management Solutions and Account Billing Software for Housing Societies. We also offer residential soceity news of Noida, Dwarka, Indirapuram, Gurgaon and Faridabad. You can place advertisement for your business on city spidey.

Gate Management System
Society Management App
Society Management
rwa Management App
Neighbourhood Management App
Apartment Management App
Apartment Management System
Visitors Management System
Apartment Management Software
Noida News
Gurgaon News
Ghaziabad News
Delhi News
Indirapuram News

srjwebsolutions said...

We are leading responsive website designing and development company in Noida.
We are offering mobile friendly responsive website designing, website development, e-commerce website, seo service and sem services in Noida.

Responsive Website Designing Company in Noida
Website Designing Company in Noida
SEO Services in Noida
SMO Services in Noida

Genxsoft said... is online medical store pharmacy in laxmi nagar Delhi. You can Order prescription/OTC medicines online.
Cash on Delivery available. Free Home Delivery

Online Pharmacy in Delhi
Buy Online medicine in Delhi
Online Pharmacy in laxmi nagar
Buy Online medicine in laxmi nagar
Onine Medical Store in Delhi
Online Medical store in laxmi nagar
Online medicine store in delhi
online medicine store in laxmi nagar
Purchase Medicine Online
Online Pharmacy India
Online Medical Store

Unknown said...

We are uhe solid first platform for modeling newcomers to achieve there new dreams. The first to train and promote out models at our expense to avoid burden on them. Join the most popular agency if you modelling jobs in Delhi for female freshers, models, students, housewives aiming to start there modeling career. We are top modelling agency in Delhi offering modelling jobs in Delhi for upcoming female freshers or experienced models who want to join lingerie modeling agencies.

modeling agencies in Delhi
modeling agencies
modeling jobs
modeling auditions
model coordinators
modeling jobs in Delhi

Unknown said...

We are specialized in Mechanised cleaning of Underground and Overhead Water Tanks of all sizes. Door Step services across Delhi, Noida and Ghaziabad.

Water tank cleaning services in Noida
Water tank cleaning services in Ghaziabad
Water tank cleaning services in Delhi

Drain cleaning services in Noida

Drain cleaning services in Ghaziabad
Drain cleaning services in Delhi
Pipeline Cleaning Service in Noida

Pipeline cleaning services in Ghaziabad
Pipeline cleaning services in Delhi

Tank cleaning services in Noida

Tank cleaning services in Ghaziabad
Tank cleaning services in Delhi