Hyper Speed-Reading!

Think you’re a speed-reader? There’s a new piece of technology that will allow you to up your game and allow others to catch up.

Samsung is about to release a new app that will let you read a book in under 90 minutes.

How does it work? The app allows text to simply flash rapidly on the screen. According to the article, “our eyes don’t move at all as we see the words, and we can therefore process information instantaneously rather than spend time decoding each word.”

Very efficient, if your heart can take it.

But what do you think? Do you think that this app would ruin the overall reading experience by rushing you through a book? Or will this enhance the reading experience by allowing you to absorb information faster?

See you out there!

If you’re a writer, write. And if you’re a reader, keep reading. We need you!

Author Richard S. Todd

Richard Todd is a novelist, screenplay writer, and social media guy. Plus a few other things that get lost in the clutter. Visit him online at www.richard-todd.com.


eBooks Today. Hard Copies Tomorrow.

I read an interesting article in the Globe and Mail the other day. It’s about that classic literary triumvirate: the writer, the reader, and the publisher.

It wasn’t too long ago that these three entities relied on each other for success. Take one away and the whole house of cards that is the publishing industry crashes to the floor.

But not anymore. One of these players is increasingly finding itself pushed out of the equation. As more writers are self-publishing through eBooks and interacting directly with the reading public, the publisher is finding itself less and less crucial to the equation.

Many of us were forced to self-publish because we couldn’t attract the golden ring that is a publishing contract. But more and more authors are volunteering to self-publish and circumvent that painstaking and possibly disappointing route of finding a traditional publisher, opting instead to just go ahead and do it themselves.

Although the author’s success as described in the article might not be typical, it still strengthened my resolve to go eBook first with my upcoming novel The Orphans of the Creek, aggressively promote it using Social Media marketing, and invest the proceeds into a limited print run. I can then arrange for in-store and book fair appearances, just like I did with Raincloud.

I’ll be sure to blog about my progress and share my successes and failures with you. Hopefully you can benefit from whatever happens to me.

But for now, if you’ll excuse me, I have to finish the book first.

See you out there!

If you’re a writer, write. And if you’re a reader, keep reading. We need you!

Richard Todd is an author, blogger, and Social Media guy. Plus a few other things that get lost in the clutter. Visit him online at www.richard-todd.com.

eBooks – A Digital Evolution or a Corporate Solution?

Remember vinyl records? There was a time when it seemed nothing could displace them. Reel-to-reel tapes couldn’t. 8-tracks couldn’t. Cassettes came close with the emergence of the Sony Walkman but still those 33s and 45s lined record shops and home entertainment units.

Until the dawn of the CD. Bye bye vinyl. Long live CDs! Until digital downloads arrived. And that idea was so revolutionary that it took videocassettes with them and still remains a threat to the DVD industry.

It was only a matter of time that digital books would follow. With eBook sales expected to rise dramatically over the next few years, those beloved hard and softcovers could start disappearing as fast as vinyl did.

Or will they? I find that there’s something intimate about holding a book that never applied to vinyl. After all, you can’t hold music. Sure, you can hold the cardboard sleeve but the sleeve isn’t really the medium. You can hold a book and it is the medium. Yet despite this, eBook sales continue to rise.

Yes, with an eReader you can carry a dozen books in your suitcase without weighing yourself down. Yes, you can download many classic books for free. But isn’t there something cold and impersonal about staring at yet another screen? Don’t we do enough of that already with monitors, televisions, and wireless devices?

Sure, you might argue that eBooks save loads of a paper and, by extension, trees. But I would also submit that acres of trees get wiped out by the plants producing the plastic eReaders.

The argument can go on and on but I’m not hopeful for the survival of the traditional book. The bottom line is the bottom line and, quite simply, eBooks are cheaper for the publishers to produce. Music lovers didn’t ask for 45s to be discontinued. The industry took them away.

Hug those books tightly. Soon we’ll be told what we can and cannot buy. Again.

Richard S. Todd is a Canadian author and blogger. Visit him online at www.richard-todd.com.