4 years ago
Tuesday, August 3, 2010
Question of the Day #635
At the conference this weekend, there was much discussion about books in the digital age. How would publishing change? Would readers purchase ebooks and forgo the touch of actual pages and bound books? Would picture books become animated iphone apps? Would writers and illustrators become Content Creators?
The discussions made me think of the of music industry and all the changes it struggled through over the last decade. A lot of my friends are musicians, songwriters and music managers. And over the years, we've spent many nights discussing the demise of CD sales, the impact music piraters like Napster had on the music industry and how to adapt to the electronic age.
Unfortunately, clumsy choices and resistance from huge record labels made those changes scary for music people while they were happening. Contrarily, as long as publishers embrace the fact that change is coming, I see the electronic age for writers as really exciting. I love the idea of positioning myself as a Content Creator and instead of being confined to what fits on a page, having the opportunity to cross many platforms and create multimedia for my stories.
For example, Justin Chanda, Grand Poobah at Simon and Schuster, talked about an online serial novel in which readers get to vote on the choices the main character makes. Loser/Queen, written by bestselling author Jodi Lynn Anderson, is scheduled for new segment blasts every Monday through September 13, after fan voting is tallied and the author whips up new chapters accordingly.
How cool is that? I would LOVE to connect with my audience like that.
And that's just one example of how the publishing industry is embracing technology. But some other writers, at least according to what I gathered this weekend, didn't seem too psyched about the idea of change. And that's sort of sad because I think that if you aren't adaptable, you could get left behind.
How adaptable are you? What "snooze and lose" situation have you learned from?