Questions about our industry’s future
Would you pay for access to a website that has well-written stories and novels? If you spend $150 a year on books, would you pay $120 a year to be able to read or download stories from a single author or multiple authors?
Would you pay 99 cents to download 50 pages of a book by a compelling author? Then, if you liked what you read, would you pay another 99 cents for the next 50 pages?
Would you visit a blog that has episodic stories posted every month? Would you make a point of clicking through the ads for the sponsors of that site? Would you buy those products to help support the writer?
Would you tell your friends about such a site or a blog? Would you reference it on Facebook or in your e-mails to people?
Would you be less likely to read the site if the character drinks a Coke and the Coke is linked to the Coca-Cola website?
Do you absolutely need a physical book in your hands, so you can physically turn pages? Or if books moved to an electronic media, would you go along?
These questions are all hypothetical, but the answers will drive the future of how people publish and read books. The answers will also structure how literature is structured. If people pay to download sections of books, each section is more likely to end with a hook, sometime to entice the readers to come download the next section.
If the book is good enough, and the reason is compelling enough, you’ll probably go outside the boundaries of what you think you’d like. And once you’ve done that, you might do it again. Which brings us to the final question: Is a great story any less great if it’s told in an electronic format?
Bob Sanders will be the Sunday keynote speaker at this years’ conference, speaking about the future of publishing. Mundania Publishing started in 2002, and currently features fantasy, science fiction, mystery, and historical novels. Mundania is sells ebooks and is active in MySpace and YouTube.
Mundania started with a reprint of Piers Anthony’s novel Pornucorpia and has grown from there, now featuring books from 88 authors.
Here’s a link to a podcast Bob did about writing and for the Science Fiction and Fantasy Markets. Click on Bob’s picture to listen.