With the public promiscuously hopping from one format to another, reports of the e-reader’s death look distinctly premature…
The rise of these electronic devices built only for reading has been a boon to the books sector. The transition to digital reading brought with it a new kind of publishing that was distinctly more experimental, energetic and (nakedly) commercial than that which preceded it. Just this week the publisher Little, Brown began publishing ebook shorts based on the hugely successful Broadchurch TV series that are made available to download in the hours after each show.
Outside of traditional publishing, digital reading has allowed authors to publish directly to marketplaces run by Amazon, Nook and Kobo. We have also seen the rise of fan-fiction sites (one of which helped create Fifty Shades) and writer development sites such as Wattpad and Movellas.
There is a vibrancy and quickness around publishing that can be directly linked to the arrival of the ebook. It has helped revive the print book market, with titles such as The Miniaturist and H is for Hawk published as beautifully rendered physical editions to be held, read and kept. The better publishers understand the boundaries of these different channels, the better they have become at delivering content to them.