Posted on 2012-Dec-24
The Cost of Independent Spirit
In our earlier post, we mentioned how independent authors in the 21st century need to adapt themselves to the ever-changing environment of the digital publication industry. Authors are not expected to just live like hermits isolating themselves from the crowd to finding refuge in the remotest wood cabins. Although they can still preserve the guarded privacy by writing in a very quiet work setting to concentrate on crafting words and ideas, the communicative skills have become the new essential challenges or probably obstacles authors have to overcome. Mingling in society and promoting books are not the sole responsibilities of book publicists any longer. When your independent spirit keeps your aspiration grounded, you have many more duties cut out for you.
Children Book’s Enhancement
Children book authors must have advanced their storytelling technique past the current year’s technological offerings. They always keep an eye on the new colorful method to hypnotize and mesmerize the young readers’ mind with pictures, audible narration, video, and other thrilling animation to make sure their target audience will pay enough attention.
When there is so much more to expect from the author, plot is not the only priority they remain focused on. Multimedia content becomes a must-have to upstage a plain story. The eBook platform is known not to be resourceful enough to support this technological advancement (audio and video are very poorly supported across all eBook platforms). Creating an application-presenting the best possible children books- gains popularity and gets approval among authors. Mobile app stores are known to provide the apps galore ranging from reinventing the classics (e.g. Rapunzel, The Nativity, Noah’s Ark) and reengineer the modern tales with the likes of Madagascar or Kung Fu Panda.
Application’s Performance Varies
Unfortunately, I do not possess an Apple products to toy with so I grabbed iStoryBooks and Tidel’s Little Red Riding Hood from Amazon’s Android Apps Store instead. The former app requires huge amount of available space to showcase high-res photos, smooth page-turning animation, and white text on dark background caption whereas the latter takes tiny portion of space to show the simple illustration side by side with dark on white background. Texts on the latter app are much more readable than the fanciful app mentioned earlier. I did not notice the lag while swiping across the screen to change the page. Perhaps, the way the app creator keeps the graphic to a minimum could boost navigational performance.
Back to What Authors Know best
Before I read any further, the Little Red Riding Hood app crashed but luckily resumed the previous reading progress. To feed my curiosity, I reached inside a messy drawer and grabbed a hardcopy of children’s eBook that tells the story of a turtle who wants to jump. Although I have the digital copy of this physical copy, I decide to cite the physical copy to get the quickest comparison with the apps on mobile screen. Unlike the futuristic breed of children’s “technologists,” the Turtle author keeps the static text simple but invests a great deal of creative energy in building moral lessons, and, most of all, new characters and stories. The name of the illustrator is credited at the bottom of the cover. Seeing these initiatives brings back a memorable sense of appreciation when stories matter the most. Do not get me wrong. Enhanced or interactive books can play a significant role in promoting children’s performance on tests.
Jack of All Trades
Nonetheless, multi-talented authors who happen to wear different hats as “designers,” “developers,” and “producers” might encounter the endless challenge to fulfill the perfection ideology. Authors can learn how to socialize with their followers on social media, type their manuscript, learn the basic skills about eBook production process, and publicize their hardworking endeavors. When we blogged how bestselling author, Guy Kawasaki, suggested that authors prioritize marketing, the comments by fellow colleagues were so thought-provoking to reexamine what the writing profession originally requires from you and what your reader expects to see: unique storytelling.
Technology vs. Story
Although doing a bit self-study on technology might help you save some money, make sure you are able to set the limit to the extent of what level of proficiency suits you well. If your level of graphical expertise serves you right, you might enjoy the post-production process painting your stories more vivid and enjoyable with the aid of software development and video-editing experiment. But if you are a natural storyteller, chances are your energy will be poured onto the next project by the time you finish the current book. My question is how much you are willing to sacrifice to unleash the full potential of a plethora of technological alternatives? If you happen to be a children book’s author, at what level are you obligated to design, develop, and produce the content that can revolutionize telling a good story?
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