I’ve been thinking a fair bit about bookleteer’s role in creating poetry pamphlets and short story collections, and the lack of much of either from budding bookleteers.
It’s boggling – they suit the format perfectly as portable, pocket sized A6 books, or the grander A5 size, and can be made very quickly without any design knowledge, in any word processing application. Use them as cheap and plentiful portfolios of work, or travel booklets for personal reading – anyone with a computer and printer has access to their own print on demand service. If you need to make changes, or they get damaged, make some more.
Or, use the online bookreader to share digital versions, and embed into websites. I’ve lost count of the amount of times I’ve edited eBooks embedded in my portfolio site, but as the link remains the same, there’s no need to re-upload.
Despite the tone of this post, this is not a sale pitch. bookleteer is free, you skeptics. I just want see fellow writers embracing it and adding to our library of eBooks, Diffusion. Get busy!
A document of the five City As Material events we ran in London last year, this eBook collects the blog posts penned after each event, a selection of photographs taken, as well as an introduction to the project and our motives for undertaking it. Created in place of an individual eBook for Sonic Geographies, due to the absence of a special guest, this account of the series provides a narrative that was lacking from the other books produced, detailing the experience from each event on the day, not just the resulting output, and hopefully intriguing potential future collaborators.
Simply using the existing text from the bookleteer blog and full-page photographs as covers for each section, in a book, turns transitory blog posts and assorted snapshots into a publication that can stand on its own right, demonstrating the transformational effect and credence associated with a printed document (although it’s also readable online), made possible with the eBook format.
Read City As Material: An Overview with the online bookreader below, or download, print and make via Diffusion.
A collaborative eBook produced as a result of our City As Material: Skyline event, Ancient Lights, City Shadows features mixed media collected on the day and material we were inspired to create after our wander through the city.
Adorning the cover is one of Martin Fidler’s intricate skyline drawings, opposed with an ambiguous photograph of Tower 42, taken from ground level, looking up – once the image is reversed, it resembles surreal train tracks, running into the horizon. Flowing throughout the book are two lines, mapping our elevation over distance and over duration, captured via a iPhone GPS / Altitude app. They stream through notebook scraps and photos, providing a locational narrative – we liked the idea of extending and distorting this digital data into an abstract visual, creating our own man-made skyline for the backdrop of the eBook.
Read Ancient Lights, City Shadows below, using our online bookreader, or download on Diffusion.
We’re really excited to announce a major new feature to bookleteer : an online bookreader allowing you to read and share your eBooks online. The bookreader is built in HTML5 and can be opened by standard web browsers – so now your eBooks can also be read on screen on a computer, laptop, smartphone (iPhone/Android etc) or tablet (iPad etc). Anyone can read an eBook that’s been shared via bookreader, but authors wanting to share their eBooks with bookreader will need to join the Alpha Club for the time being or have a Guest or Pro account.
The QR code image can be embedded in websites, or downloaded and printed onto stickers, or incorporated into other things (postcards, business cards, other publications etc).
Embedding your eBook in your website or blog
The bookreader also allows you to embed a ‘mini reader’ of your eBook in web pages or blog posts (see below). You can share it in single or double page mode, as well as specifying a specific page to open to:
A link in the mini reader opens up the full screen version.
To see more examples please visit http://diffusion.org.uk/?tag=bookreader where we’ll be adding more embedded eBooks into the post pages over time.
Re-vamped interface for creating/editing eBooks
We’ve also re-vamped the interface for creating and editing eBooks to make choosing the right format easier. Selecting which design (Basic or Custom) you want to use is done by toggling the panes, then selecting the radio button at the bottom of each icon to decide which binding and orientation you want. The drop down menus below allow you to select the Sheet Size (A3 or A4) and the Reading (Left to Right or Right to Left) :
A new section now enables you to add more information to your book such as a short summary, an author bio, the name of the publisher, and copyright statement. This information show up in the bookreader’s information window.
You can add your own personal bio in the “my account’ page then simply click the “add my bio” button to add it to each publication you make rather than fill it in each time:
Acknowledgements & Thanks
The bookreader is open source software from the Open Library, who maintain one of the largest online knowledge resources and are part of the Internet Archive. Huge thanks to them for making this fantastic piece of software available to others to use.