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How Would You Enhance Your eBook?


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#1 RC Lewis

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Posted 08 November 2010 - 07:12 PM

I know, some of us are die-hard book-lovers who just want to read the story. So let's put it this way: Mega-huge publisher has you under contract. They know you're hot stuff, so they ask you to come up with some ideas for enhancing a special edition of your eBook. They'll pay however many techies it takes to make it happen. The standard eBook will still be available to those who just want the words, but the deluxe edition will be available for a little extra to the kinds of fans who pay double for special edition DVDs.

What would you add to your already-fabulous piece of work?


Okay, I'll go first.

One idea for mine is to have links the first time a character's name occurs, bringing up a quick video showing the name-sign. (That's pretty specific to my work, I imagine, since there's a deaf character and sign language plays a role.)

I was also thinking that I kind of dig the illustrations in Scott Westerfeld's Leviathan series, but due to the ability to re-size and re-flow text in eBooks, I'm not sure how well that works. (Note to self: Download the free preview for those books and see if they include the illustrations or not.) So perhaps in an enhanced format, there could be an icon anchored to a certain point in the text. When clicked, a pop-up with the illustration comes up. This would be kind of nice when my MC and her sister first arrive in the alternate dimension.

Maybe an "educational" version of the eBook providing a pop-up glossary for words identified to be significantly above the average reading level of the book. (Yes, I write YA--does it show?) :blush:
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#2 Jean Oram

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Posted 09 November 2010 - 12:17 PM

I totally know what you mean. I've been dreaming about this sort of thing since they first whispered about it ages ago. I'm not sure what I'd do for my own book, but reading The DaVinci Code years ago, I thought it would be a good candidate. Color pictures of the paintings he's referencing. Maps of the cities. Photos of landmarks. Links to websites that discuss certain aspects of history if you want to learn more, that sort of thing.

I think for some stories, some would really help bring aspects of the stories alive and bring the story home to some folks who may not have the knowledge, etc, to 'catch' it all. The possibilities are endless. And fun to dream about!

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#3 Robin Breyer

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Posted 09 November 2010 - 01:51 PM

What I would want would depend on what can be done. Right now I know that you can have links from one part of the book to another so one thing I would like is a bio of the major characters, details on the places, maps, all in full glorious color. As I have been writing in SF and Fantasy, I have creatures who aren't human and exotic places, all of which could be illustrated and linked to the first occurrence in the story. I also use strange names and the first occurrence could link to a pronunciation guide. I also might want to include a bunch of behind the scenes stuff. Either in-universe or trivia on how I came up with things. Too keep it compatible with the majority of readers, I'd probably just stick to text and images. If there were other options, I would want interactive maps (world/region/city) and some 3d pans of ships and places, audio recordings of the pronunciations.

I could come up with more ideas, but those are the first things that come to mind.

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#4 RC Lewis

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Posted 26 January 2011 - 09:54 PM

Check out this article for a little of the latest talk about enhanced e-books and e-book apps. A bit that caught my eye:

And all the digital producers were showing off new authoring tools that they say will speed up the e-book/app development process, make production cheaper and more efficient and attract a new generation of publisher/producers to e-book development.


Interesting thoughts percolating in my head.
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