Common Core Standards

Friday, June 24, 2011

My Book an eBook

So after eleven years in the making, Lissy-Lost!, my first book written and illustrated by moi, has taken the digital leap to an eBook. 

"L2" (Lissy-Lost!) as my daughter so lovingly calls this book, is now available from Barnes & Noble for the mere price of $3.99. (And you can even download free eBook reader apps at BN for your PC, Android, iPad and Pod and more!)

When I purchased my Nook color I never really thought about having L2 go digital. But after getting the book reprinted I thought why the heck not jump on the bitmap bandwagon.

It started off as an experiment to see how it would go. I download books on my Nook every so often--OK all the time--but only to see how other books look:  illustrations, layout, overall feel. (OK, I love story.) But the L2 paperback book is glossy, colorful and can be flipped to pictures and passages. Pages can be dog-eared, bent and even colored in if you are six (my first book altering art pieces had coloring and signatures in them--Marie still laughs at me as I still sign my name in my books--in a family of six as a kid you had to claim your things).

So now that L2 is out there floating on the waves of electronica, how do I market it?  Any suggestions?  I have read a few blogs and such going over the same problem or challenge. Blog about it, tell folks on FB...umm I ran out of ideas. Why? Because my brain is usually in CREATE mode NOT market mode and moves on to the next shiny thing. 

I have a book signing at our Pinckney Library next week and will have books there to sign and do a small program for kids and I will mention the new "eL2". But how do you sign an eBook? Collect signatures in a drawing program? I did download a kid's coloring program on my Nook and actually thought about having Ruth McNally Barshaw of Ellie McDoodle fame sign her name with her finger and draw her Ellie at the Comic Jam in Chelsea last week.

Will my next book be an eBook? Perhaps not. I like the paper. Heck, L2 is a 30% post-consumer waste and the printer supports the Plant a Billion Trees Program. But with Holly Wild, or HW, you will be able to stick it in a pocket, it will need no batteries or charging and can get it wet in a tent on a dark and spooky, stormy night. And I want kids to draw in it, fold it, color it--interact with it. Make it personal and sign their own name in it. Afterall, reading a book is a personal experience.

Like we writers, illustrators and editors said when we met over a month ago over dinner, we (the public) won't be handing down eBooks to Grandma's grandkids when she dies or saying fondly, "Oh, that was Grandma's favorite app! Who gets it?" There will be no wear and tear and aging of these eBooks. My daughter and I collect old, old kids books and run and fight over who saw what first when we shop for them. I can't see this happening with eBooks. (AND the names and coloring of pictures in those books make them more so endearing.)

Sign my Nook drawing program?

I love my Nook because I do love books. I still use our local library (mostly for a pickup point for MEL books) and even request books from them on my Nook. I'm not right, I know. But my Nook is handy--a portfolio, email and FB at a WiFi touch and I can pull it out and jump into a book at any time--and the kid drawing program occasionally soothes my artist ADD--but give me paper or a paper book anytime for pure fun.

I still love the creating process of sketching and drawing and try to stress this to folks young and old that I meet. After I sold a book to a family last weekend at the Ann Arbor Artisan Market I showed them the sketches I did while doodling and how they became the final illustrations for the book.

I'll always like the primitive feel and smell of pen and pencil on paper. And to draw with a Nook finger is a bit like an Etch-a-Sketch. So I can't see doing any eBook signings anytime soon.

But if you purchase a copy of L2 online at Barnes and Noble, I'll email you a bookmark!

But if you want the old-fashioned paperback it is available for purchase at many fine stores listed on my website.

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