News Roundup [September 2, 2016]

News Roundup

Every Friday, NSR releases a compilation of news stories related to ebooks, epublishing, elibraries, and digital literacy from around the world. The goal is to help information professionals (of all walks of life) keep up with what is happening in the world of ebooks and econtent beyond the confines of their organizations, institutions, countries, and continents.

This is by no means an all-inclusive list of the most important news that occurred this (or any other) week. But it is a curated list, and a way for NSR to not lose sight of the big picture. Here’s the thinking behind what we choose to highlight. Enjoy this week’s compilation.
Belgians are Hunting Books, Instead of Pokémon (The Digital Reader)

Subway Reads Brings Free eBook Excerpts to NYC (The Digital Reader)

I’m blind. Kindle text to speech has been a nightmare to master—here’s how to fix this (Teleread)

France Passes Copyright Law Demanding Royalties For Every Image Search Engines Index Online (Techdirt)

Amazon Launches Telugu Language Online Bookstore (The Digital Reader)

Podcast: 10 Trends Driving the Future of Publishing with Mark Coker (Self Publishing Advice)

South Carolina State Library Adds Over 19,000 Documents to South Carolina Digital Library (Infodocket)

Independent authors are starting to outsell the Big Five (The Writer)

In-depth review of Kobo’s Aura One: It’s Pre-order Day #1 (Teleread)

Announcing 2016 Digital Book Printing Conference (Book Business)

Harvard Is Digitizing Nearly 40 Million Pages Of Case Law So You Can Access It Online And For Free (Library Stuff)

Diaries of General George S. Patton (1910-1945) Digitized and Now Available Online (Infodocket)

Kobo Aura One as a PDF eReader: No, Just No (video) (The Digital Reader)

Rx for the Kindle text-to-speech mess—to help blind and sighted alike (Teleread)

Cooper Hewitt Design Museum: Mass Digitization Effort Complete, More than 200,000 Objects Now Accessible Online (Infodocket)

Timberland libraries now offer access to self-published books (Publetariat)

Review Round-Up: Kobo Aura One (The Digital Reader)

Axiell and ODILO Offer Better Digital Content Access (Information Today)

ProQuest Introduces Enhancements and New Options for Books and Ebooks (Information Today)

Cambridge Core is the new academic platform from Cambridge University Press, launching on the 4th September. (Ebooks@Cambridge)

This Fall, we will partner with the French Comics Association to promote the #comicsframed festival. #NYC stay tuned for exclusive news! (French Culture)

Writer is Self, Author is Ego [and an Editor would like to apologize] (No Shelf Required)


Paul Biba is former Editor-in-Chief of TeleRead. For his curated ebook/elibrary/epublishing news, follow him on Twitter @paulkbiba.

Mirela Roncevic is Managing Editor at No Shelf Required. For all NSR-related news and reviews, follow her on Twitter @noshelfrequired. For her writings related to books and all things creativity and literacy, follow her on Facebook.

Writer is Self, Author is Ego [and an Editor would like to apologize]

Writer vs. Author

What is a writer? What does it mean to write? I searched high and low for answers, looked left and write, and came to this conclusion:

Writer is — any man or woman willing, learning, or already able to express him or herself through writing in order to grow spiritually, emotionally, and intellectually and to contribute to a larger community by sharing one’s own experience with others for the sake of augmenting collective consciousness.

What is an author? What does it mean to author? I searched high and low for answers, looked left and right, and came to this conclusion:

Author is —  a man or woman selected by an institution or organization to express him or herself through writing in order for that institution or organization to grow financially and through branding and to contribute to a larger community by sharing his or her experience with others for the sake of augmenting budgets of institutions and organizations and salaries (and titles) of those who run them and who deemed that man or woman ‘worthy.’ Collective consciousness also grows this way, but it is controlled by the institution which exercises tremendous power over that consciousness. This institution can be a private entity which first identifies the author (e.g., established publisher) or a public entity which, often in cooperation with an established publisher, chooses to nurture the author and the spreading of his or her message (e.g., library).

Writer creates. Writer is an artist. Writer is self. Writing is liberty. Writing is personal growth. That which is written only asks to be read.

Author controls.  Author is a brand. Author is ego. Authoring is power.  Authoring is institutional growth. That which is authored only asks to be sold.

Writer =  Creation. Art. Self. Liberty. Personal growth. Reading.

Author =  Control. Brand. Ego. Power. Institutional growth. Selling.

Author =Authority

[As concluded by a professional book editor and book reviewer who spent 20 years of her career telling everyone she believed that a) writing was hard work, b) not everyone can or should write, c) we needed publishers and libraries to tell us what is worthy, and d) being rejected by publishers and libraries means that you are less worthy and you should not write (and therefore not participate in creating). She would now like to apologize.]


Opinions my own.

Mirela Roncevic is Managing Editor at No Shelf Required. For all NSR-related news and book reviews, follow her on Twitter @noshelfrequired. For her writings related to creativity, writing, and literacy, follow her on Facebook.

 

Audiobook of the Week: The Short Reign of Pippin IV by John Steinbeck

Audiobooks are ebooks. Listening is learning. In an effort to raise awareness among readers and all who work with books about the versatility of digital literacy, NSR occasionally publishes audiobook reviews of titles of exceptional quality to draw attention to the subtle (but consistent) ways in which formats are blurring in digital environments.
This week’s pick is John Steinbeck’s The Short Reign of Pippin IV. In the words of NSR reviewer, “with current headlines, this political screwball comedy will be much appreciated.”

Z04217_image_148x230[1]Title: The Short Reign of Pippin IV
Author: John Steinbeck
Narrator: Jefferson Mays
Publisher: Recorded Books
Release Date: 2016

Duration: 4 hours

Reviewed for NSR by Michael Rogers (Babylon, New York)

 

John Steinbeck often tackles the affairs of the common man and the political climate that impacts him, but usually in a serious tone (The Grapes of Wrath isn’t exactly a barrel of laughs). This 1957 novel also incorporates those themes, but Steinbeck shows a different side of himself by presenting them in a wicked satire so biting that Jonathan Swift would be envious.

Protagonist Pippin Héristal is an amateur astronomer who spends most of his mundane existence listening to jazz and photographing the heavens through his telescope (he discovered the comet of ’51, you know!) in his Paris eighth-arrondissement home with little concern for the machinations of his fellow men. Allowing her husband his lackadaisical manner, wife Marie is a practical woman who maintains an orderly house, abhors waste, and keeps a firm grip on the family income provided by their property on which grapes producing a fine, much-desired wine are grown. Their daughter Clotilde is an anomaly—at 15 she wrote a novel that became a sensation and was morphed into a film. Instant fame paved the way for her to take to the stage and tour America. Clotilde does everything to the extreme. She is pretty but fat, a communist, clumsy and an American by osmosis. They live simply, quietly, and anonymously…or at least did.

It’s the year “19-blank” and France is in a funk; it’s greatness as a world leader has waned as its government increasingly is bogged down in never-ending bickering between the sundry ridiculous political parties—the Radical Conservatives and Conservative Radicals, the Right Centralists and the Left Centralists, the Christian Atheists, etc.—that disagree on everything to the point where leadership and progress are strangled.

The politicos decide that to reclaim France’s former glory the country must reinstate the monarchy, but who will wear the crown? Alas, poor Pippin is several generation descended from Charlemagne long rotting in the ground, and as he is a reasonable fellow, he retired to bed a commoner and awakens a king! While a king’s job is to rule, those who appointed him in reality only want the pomp and circumstance of a monarch (it makes good newspaper copy and brings in money from across the world) without actually having him in charge. Dragged off to live in Versailles (hot, dirty, full of freeloaders endlessly eating and drinking, bad plumbing, and snooty servants that bow and curtsy graciously and then completely ignore their orders) that life for Pippin becomes an astronomical pain in the ass. Marie endures with grace while Clotilde’s outrageous personality makes her a natural princess.

Pippin and Marie turn to their closest friends for council—for Pippin it’s his uncle Charlie, a shady art dealer who sells unsigned paintings that “might” be the work of a master (and might be cheap fakes) while Marie seeks solace from Sister Hyacinth, a former topless chorus girl who joined a religious order founded by the patron saint of feet!

Poor Pippin is so miserable and out of his depth that he begins taking kingly advice from Clotilde’s teenage boyfriend Tod Johnson, son of the American “Egg King of Petaluma,” whose dad built a multimillion dollar empire in chickens. Tod asserts that monarchs essentially are CEOs and that Pippin must run France like a corporation, including selling nobleman titles to rich Americans to generate bribe money. Everyone is making a quick buck of the new monarchy while the king himself has to sneak out in disguise and putt around the countryside on his scooter just to get a meal!

Steinbeck piles on the irony, sarcasm, and laughs—all the political parties claim to want what’s best for France when they really want what’s best for themselves and screw the other guy. Narrator Jefferson Mays delivers a perfect reading, breathing life into the characters and emphasizing the biting humor with just the right amount of a French accent when needed.

With current headlines, this political screwball comedy will be much appreciated.


Special thank you to Michael Rogers, former Media Editor and audiobook reviewer at Library Journal, for contributing this and other audio reviews to NSR. Publishers/producers interested in getting their (newly released) audiobooks reviewed on NSR should contact Michael directly at mermsr@optimum.net.

News Roundup [August 26, 2016]

News Roundup

Every Friday, NSR releases a compilation of news stories related to ebooks, epublishing, elibraries, and digital literacy from around the world. The goal is to help information professionals (of all walks of life) keep up with what is happening in the world of ebooks and econtent beyond the confines of their organizations, institutions, countries, and continents.

This is by no means an all-inclusive list of the most important news that occurred this (or any other) week. But it is a curated list, and a way for NSR to not lose sight of the big picture. Here’s the thinking behind what we choose to highlight. Enjoy this week’s compilation.

Three Reading Revolutions (No Shelf Required)

U. of Michigan’s Art, Architecture and Engineering Library Providing Access to Some E-Textbooks via Library Subs (Infodocket)

Romancing the E-book: A conversation with Book Riot’s Jessica Tripler (Teleread)

Incredible new resource! New York Public Library Invites You to Tap the Collection (NY Times)

How the New York Public Library made ebooks open, and thus one trillion times better (Boingboing)

Clemson and National Park Service Launch Open Digital #Repository w/ Over 100,000 Hi-Res Public Domain Images Avail (Infodocket)

e-Book Cover Design Awards, July 2016 (The Book Designer)

Looking Back at iOS Accessibility’s Biggest Milestones (512 Pixels)

Guest Post: You’re Wrong About Digital Comics – Here’s What You’re Missing (The Digital Reader)

Switzerland’s ETH-Bibliothek is uploading 134,000 images to Wikimedia Commons (Wikimeda)

Explore the Harvard Art Museums’ Massive Bauhaus Collection Online (Hyperallergic)

Bibliotheca Announces Partnership with PRH’s Living Language (Digital Book World)

Report Highlights: “Textbook Trends: How U.S. College Students Source Course Materials” (Infodocket)

OverDrive to present on expanded global distribution of digital content at Beijing International Book Fair (Overdrive)

Sno-Isle, OverDrive Test Demand-Driven Ebook Acquisition (Library Journal)

What Agents Should Know About Ebooks Made from PDFs (Digital Book World)

Axiell partners with Odlio to expand digital content offering to libraries (Library Stuff)

Ebook Anatomy: Inside the Black Box (The Book Designer)

Singapore Government launches public consultation on major copyright reform (IP Kitten)


Paul Biba is former Editor-in-Chief of TeleRead. For his curated ebook/elibrary/epublishing news, follow him on Twitter @paulkbiba.

Mirela Roncevic is Managing Editor at No Shelf Required. For all NSR-related news and reviews, follow her on Twitter @noshelfrequired. For her writings related to books and all things creativity and literacy, follow her on Facebook.

Book of the Week: Return of the Convict by William Alan Thomas

In an effort to draw attention to quality independent literature (fiction and nonfiction published by independent authors and indie publishers), and in agreement with BlueInk Review, NSR highlights reviews published on BIR’s site each week.

Return of the Convict

About Author

William Alan ThomasWilliam Alan ThomasWilliam Alan Thomas took a BA in English at the University of Chicago in the 1960’s, and his first novel, Daddy’s Darling Daughter, was published in 1974. Life was to sweep him far from the world of books, as he fell in love with the seafood business, acquired an old fishing boat, and then became a Vancouver longshoreman. Presently a full time writer living in Chilliwack, B.C., he remains involved with Return of the Convict; there’s to be a prequel and two sequels.  He’s just finishing a rewrite of Dangerous Vision, a corporate espionage thriller published in 2005, when he was still working at the docks.


About BlueInk Review

BlueInk Review was founded by Patti Thorn, former books editor of the Rocky Mountain News, and Patricia Moosbrugger, literary agent and subsidiary rights specialist. It offers serious, unbiased reviews of self-published books. Reviews are penned largely by writers drawn from major mainstream publications, such as The New York Times and Washington Post, and editors of respected traditional publishing houses. Select reviews appear in Booklist magazine.

Three Reading Revolutions

3 Reading Revolution

I have been thinking ‘long and mad’ (in the words of my favorite poet Pablo Neruda) about the history of the book. I’ve been thinking about it most of all in the context of how readers consume it. Truth be told, thinking about it as a ‘book professional’ leaves me gasping for air sometimes.

I am not even sure that I can convince most of my colleagues (publishers, librarians, and authors alike) that my thinking about the “three revolutions of reading” (as I see them) makes perfect sense and that it is, indeed, the way it is. But I can say this: these thoughts are persistent and consistent with my experience as editor, writer, content developer, and publishing/library professional. Yet they are NOT the thoughts of an editor, writer, content developer or publishing/library professional. They are the thoughts of a reader living and experiencing the world in 2016 (and beyond). Perhaps also the thoughts of a parent raising a reader living and experiencing the world in 2016.

And I could write many paragraphs and ‘throw’ them between the lines written on this board (to explain each revolution in detail), but perhaps it helps to say as much as possible with as few words as possible.

Perhaps.


Mirela Roncevic is Managing Editor at No Shelf Required. For all NSR-related news and book reviews, follow her on Twitter @noshelfrequired. For her writings related to creativity and literacy, follow her on Facebook.

Info on who is speaking on Indie Author Day (and reminder there is still time for libraries to sign up)

SELF-e_IndieAuthorDay_Logo_v2

Since the announcement of the Indie Author Day (set for October 8th), 260 (and counting) libraries have signed up to participate. The event is designed to bring local writing communities together in their libraries to participate in panels, book readings and signings, workshops, and presentations. Then, at 2 p.m. EST everyone is invited to join a virtual panel featuring the following experts:

Moderator

Jon Fine, a First Amendment attorney, is best known in the publishing industry as the longtime Director of Author and Publisher Relations for Amazon. He left that position at the beginning of 2015 after almost a decade with the company, and now is consulting in professional online and traditional media and e-commerce, both in legal and business affairs.]

Panelists

Robin Cutler began her career in publishing over 30 years ago and is currently the Director of IngramSpark. She has also served as Assistant Director at USC Press and Executive Director of University Relations at the University of Wisconsin, she started a trade imprint, SummerHouse Press, and served as its CEO. Robin most recently worked as Vendor Manager for Amazon/CreateSpace. Robin has broad knowledge of indie, academic and trade publishing and is an expert in content creation and distribution, on-demand models, marketing and author strategies. Robin is a leader in the independent publishing space, and when not developing new programs and services for IngramSpark, she can often be found sharing her expertise at industry events around the world.

Kiera Parrott is the Reviews Director for School Library Journal and Library Journal. Through SELF-e, Library Journal is helping indie authors to get discovered in the library. Prior to working at Library Journal, Kiera was children’s librarian in various roles including head of children’s services at Darien Library in Connecticut, Darien’s children’s librarian / collection development coordinator and a children’s librarian at New York Public Library. Kiera’s favorite books are the ones that make her cry — or snort — on public transportation.

Jim Blanton was born and raised in Lexington, Kentucky. Upon graduating from U.K. in 2000 with his M.L.S., Jim went to work for the Chesapeake Public Library in Chesapeake, Virginia where he served in a variety of roles including Assistant Director. He was a two-time recipient of the Virginia Public Library Director’s award for Outstanding Adult Program of the Year, received the VPLD award for Outstanding Young Adult program and was also named by Library Journal as a 2012 Mover and Shaker for his work on a financial literacy game called Save Steve.

L. Penelope has been writing since she could hold a pen and loves getting lost in the worlds in her head. She is the author of new adult, fantasy and paranormal romance with characters who match the real world. Her debut novel, Song of Blood & Stone, won the 2016 Self-Publishing eBook Award from the Black Caucus of the American Library Association. Learn more about L. Penelope and her books on her website.

News Roundup [August 19, 2016]

News Roundup

Each Friday, NSR releases a compilation of news stories related to ebooks, epublishing, elibraries, and digital literacy from around the world. The goal is to help information professionals (of all walks of life) keep up with what is happening in the world of ebooks and econtent beyond the confines of their companies, institutions, countries, and continents.

This is by no means an all-inclusive list of the most important news that occurred this (or any other) week. But it is a curated list, and a way for NSR to not lose sight of the big picture. Here’s the thinking behind what we choose to highlight:

  • focus on diversity and giving equal voice to established news sources as well as to blogs run by independent thinkers
  • promotion of efforts that support digital literacy (in all incarnations)
  • attention to ebook and literacy initiatives in emerging markets
  • strong interest in ideas propelling the industry forward rather than promotions of certain brands
  • strong interest in professionals  challenging the status quo and leading the way

Enjoy this week’s compilation.


@rhizome Has Released the First Public Version of #Webrecorder Library Journal

Did You Know Audible Will Steal Away Your Credits If You Cancel Your Membership? The Digital Reader

Kindle in Motion: the Good, the Bad, and the Ugly about Amazon’s New Enhanced Format (Screenshots) The Digital Reader

Worldwide availability of current Kindle Models as of 8/11/16 Kindle World

eBook Accessibility Audit in UK Higher Education Cilip

The Idiomatic generates random idioms to annoy and confuse your friends Boingboing

Bibliothèque et Archives nationales du Québec adds 2.4 million bibliographic records to WorldCat OCIC

Mountain West Digital Library (MWDL) Adds Digital Collections From Utah State Archives aaa Infodocket

Author Co-Founds Enhanced eBook Startup The Digital Reader

Amazon Deletes Kannada-Langauge eBook, Indian Literary Community Freaks Out The Digital Reader

VAT ON BOOKS IS HARMING PUBLIC EDUCATION IN KENYA Bizna

The Connecticut State Library Announces the First Phase of the Development of a Statewide Library eBook Platform CT State Library

Comment le Réseau Carel tente d’améliorer le prêt numérique en bibliothèque et PNB Scoop It

Technology is not the death of deep reading No Shelf Required

Kindle Unlimited Funding Jumps in July 2016 The Digital Reader

The forgotten world of TV guide magazines, curated Boingboing

Kindle Instant Preview Indies Unlimited

New Report: “Digitizing Orphan Works: Legal Strategies to Reduce Risks for Open Access to Copyrighted #OrphanWorks” Infodocket

Condé Nast adds iPad support for The New Yorker Today app Talking New Media

Reference: The Bauhaus, a Comprehensive New Digital Resource, Launched By The Harvard Art Museums Infodocket

Book Making: The typographical challenges in publishing indigenous-language books Quill and Quire

Writers Can Earn Cash With In-Story Ads on Wattpad Wattpad

Why publishers are turning to the atomisation of content Fipp

Barnes & Noble Introduces the New Samsung Galaxy Tab A NOOK Barnes & Noble

Kobo’s new Aura One e-reader is big and waterproof Engadget

Librarian uses 21st-century technology to showcase Buffalo’s 19th-century splendor Library Stuff

Explore our Catalogue of Medieval Manuscripts, a free online resource for Middle Ages fans Medieval Manuscrip Blog

The Fourth Time is the Charm: Wattpad to Interrupt Stories With Adverts The Digital Reader

“Wayback Machine Won’t Censor Archive for Taste, Director Says After Olympics Article Scrubbed” Infodocket

The Best New Way to Read? Novels Told Through Text Messages Library Stuff

Ed Note: All titles of the articles listed below appear in the style used in the original sources.


Paul Biba is former Editor-in-Chief of TeleRead. For his curated ebook/elibrary/epublishing news, follow him on Twitter @paulkbiba.

Mirela Roncevic is Managing Editor at No Shelf Required. For all NSR-related news and reviews, follow her on Twitter @noshelfrequired. For her writings related to books and all things creativity and literacy, follow her on Facebook.

Book of the Week: Now That We’re Adults by Lynn Almengor

In an effort to draw attention to quality independent literature (fiction and nonfiction published by independent authors and indie publishers) and in agreement with BlueInk Review, NSR highlights reviews published on BIR’s site each week.

Now That We’re Adults

 

About Author

Lynn AlmengorLynn Almengor has been writing existential fiction since 2005 when she wrote and directed her first feature-length independent film. Now That We’re Adults, about the transition from college graduation into adulthood, is her first novel. Almengor holds a BA in video communication from Arcadia University and currently works as a web producer in her hometown of Philadelphia, PA., where she lives with her husband and their four ferrets.


About BlueInk Review

BlueInk Review was founded by Patti Thorn, former books editor of the Rocky Mountain News, and Patricia Moosbrugger, literary agent and subsidiary rights specialist. It offers serious, unbiased reviews of self-published books. Reviews are penned largely by writers drawn from major mainstream publications, such as The New York Times and Washington Post, and editors of respected traditional publishing houses. Select reviews appear in Booklist magazine.

Technology is not the death of deep reading

river image what is reference

In her opinion piece for No Shelf Required, Content and Media Editor at BiblioLabs, Emilie Hancock, argues that if we make even the smallest efforts to use technology as a means towards reading more, “we can re-establish a reading culture in the digital age.” At a time when so many ‘blame’ technology for ‘killing’ reading, Emilie’s article serves as a reminder that perhaps we haven’t been looking closely enough to notice that technology can, in fact, help us to read more, not less. This very thinking hits at the core of NSR’s own mission—to draw attention to the power of ebooks and econtent to transform the world into a place where reading flows and is an integral part of life in any enlightened society. Full article below.—Ed.


“People do still love to read, but they don’t have a lot of time.”

—Julian Yap, Co-Founder of Serial Box Publishing

By Emilie Hancock

Last month, National Public Radio (NPR) announced a new reason for bibliophiles to celebrate. In an article about publishers returning to serialized fiction, Serial Box Publishing Co-Founder Julian Yap reiterates an all-too-common argument for why most Americans — three quarters of us, according to an Associated Press-Ipsos poll — don’t read books: not enough time. While we have little chance of decreasing how much time we spend working, caring for family and commuting, the amount of time that could stand the most modification is leisure time.

Last year, the average American over 15 years old spent around 3 hours watching television every day. In contrast, only 15 minutes a day were spent reading. I think the real reason we don’t read books is much less complex than not having enough time. What we require is not the impossible feat of adding hours to each day, but rather a realistic and achievable change in how we use the hours we already have. What we need is a change of habit. By embracing reading material that transcends books of traditional length and publication method, we can re-establish a reading culture in the digital age.

For many Americans, habitually reading for pleasure might seem like a quaint relic of the past. But a plethora of modern studies prove that the positive effects of reading are still relevant today. Besides warding off the effects of mental aging, reducing stress and strengthening memory, attention and analytical thinking skills, a report by the Harvard Medical School shows that reading burns 50% more calories than watching T.V. does. Plus, a report by the National Endowment for the Arts shows that readers are more likely than non-readers to volunteer or do charity work, which means that reading ends up being good for everyone.

But knowing how reading improves quality of life doesn’t necessarily make it easier to fit into a daily routine. Many of us are deterred from reading by the simple — and false — assumption that reading for pleasure entails reading traditional books. Those aren’t for me, we think, those self-contained, slightly awkward remnants of the past. For many of us, settling for anything less than a multimedia experience seems like a choice for ascetic monks. Where are the graphics, the links? We protest. Not to mention that the thought of cracking open a book without chapters makes us feel on the verge of propelling endlessly through a murky abyss. What if I want to stop reading, but can’t find a good place? Rather than risk it, we avoid reading.

Study after study shows that increased media consumption has been the culprit in decreased reading in recent years. We read differently, quickly skimming for keywords, then abandoning the remaining text. The shift further away from deep reading to scanning seems inevitable. Digital mediums permeate our lives from work to play, and it seems that as innovators create more ways for consumers to use technology, reading books is rendered less likely. But this begs the question: Does this mean that reading is rendered less likely?

Not at all. There are countless places where reading indulges Americans’ increased use of digital devices. We just have to know where to find them. First thing’s first: reading doesn’t just mean reading books. While eBook reading is on the rise, there’s no need to limit ourselves to these digital iterations of traditional novels. Publishers like Serial Box tap into our newfound need for speed reading by churning out digestible chunks of material that take around 40 minutes to read and are designed to look good on mobile devices. Because no additional text is left looming unread, readers can enjoy wondering what happens next without feeling guilty about not reading the next chapter.

While you’re waiting for the next installment of serial fiction, you can find even more ways to read in small doses. Sign up to receive daily emails, and read a poem a day from the Poetry Foundation, flash fiction from Every Day Fiction, short nonfiction from Delancey Place or even classic literature from Daily Lit. Of course, there are plenty of other options, but you can simplify your search for digital literature by visiting the most iconic place to find reading material: the library.

No longer warehouses for print books, libraries are playing an increasingly active role as centers for community engagement. Part of their transformation addresses patrons’ growing demand for digital content by “offering eBooks and 21st century library services.” One way that many libraries choose to satisfy their patrons’ craving for digital is by offering on-demand reading experiences with the mobile library app BiblioBoard (Think Netflix for libraries). But one of the most effective ways that libraries can encourage reading is through a timeless service: directing patrons to reading materials they want. As libraries reach broader audiences through a shift towards community engagement, their ability to help communities find the intersection of reading and technology will become critical to re-establishing the habit of reading.

In NPR’s article on the return of serialized fiction, University of Virginia publishing expert Jane Friedman suggests that efforts to preserve habitual and deep reading in the digital age are hopeful. She says, “Most authors I talk to — and even Amazon — have said that every time they do a serial they make at least half their money on then selling the whole thing together as a bundle.” Despite starting life as shorter bits of text, published series are still consumed en masse. Perhaps this reveals a basic fact about habits: repetition is key. Fifteen minutes of reading a day has the potential to become 20, then 30 and so on. Technology is not the death of deep reading. By making a few small, conscious efforts to use technology as a means towards reading more, we can re-establish a reading culture in the digital age.


Emilie Hancock is Content and Media Editor at BiblioLabs, the creators of BiblioBoard. She is the founder of Books Unbound, a literacy program for incarcerated teens in South Carolina. She lives with her husband and their two bossy dogs, and is a patron of the Charleston County Public Library.

Portal on all things ebooks and econtent and for all reading, writing, publishing, curating, and distributing books and other content in digital format, including publishers, librarians, content developers, distributors, retailers, and educators. Managed and edited by Mirela Roncevic, with contributions from professionals and thought leaders in the United States and around the world.