I
I
I
I
I
I
I
I
HOW E-BOOKS WORK

 

‘An eBook is considered by the industry intelligentsia to be a book that is in electronic form. It is instantaneously distributed over the Internet within seconds; Gutenberg would be impressed.’  
 
- How E-books Work,             
www.enovel.com

‘Where the electronic novel really scores is in the features that elevate it beyond the limitations of a traditional printed book: at the click of a key, it will go into Large Print format, a boon for the poorly sighted and for tired eyes. Ultimately the reader, not the publisher, will select the font and size with which he or she is comfortable reading …Electronic books are smart. They can remember where you got to, so no more dog-earing, or losing bookmarks. They have all the search and find features of a word processor – enter a word or phrase and you will find the passage instantly.’
-
Horror writer Peter James speaking at a conference. (See Ray Hammond’s ‘DIGITAL BUSINESS: Surviving and Thriving in an Online World’, www.hammond.co.uk, Published in book form by Hodder & Stoughton)

Digital AuthorE-books, the literary world’s version of fast food, are written works of fact, fiction or “faction” (a mixture of the previous two) that exist in digital format . Because their production does not include such expenses as printing, paper, binding, warehousing and distribution, they are sold at a fraction of the cost of physical books (about one fifth of bookshop prices). Some websites, such as www.free-ebooks.net , give e-books way free of charge).

E-books are sold or otherwise distributed over the Internet at high speeds. They can be downloaded onto a PC, a PDA (Personal Digital Assistant) like Palm Pilot, a hand-held computer or an e-reader (palm-top device that is dedicated to e-books) such as the Microsoft Reader. Hand-helds and e-readers are gaining currency around the world for their convenience. Some of them can store about fifty e-books, so book lovers can carry a virtual library without lugging around much weight. The glowing of the screen means that you can read your books in total darkness (If, say, you are out camping). The small size of the device allows you to read your novels in restaurants, vehicles, leisure parks and almost anywhere else – day or night.

E-books exist in various electronic formats and each format requires a special kind of software to enable the human reader to view the pages. The software in question is simply referred to an ‘e-book reader’. The most popular kind of e-book reader is the Adobe Acrobat Reader that opens books saved in Adobe PDF (Portable Document Format). Another common e-book reader is the Microsoft Reader. E-book readers are distributed over the Internet free of charge. They can be downloaded from their maker’s official sites, eg. www.microsoft.com/reader and www.adobe.com/products/acrobat , or from e-book sellers such as www.ebookmall.com and www.enovel.com.

Of the various e-formats available , Alexander Nderitu, the first Kenyan to write a novel exclusively for the Internet,  prefers Adobe PDF which is the de facto standard for electronically published books.

‘ Adobe PDF best illustrates the evolution of the printed word,’ says the digital author from the hills of Nyeri. ‘A PDF book looks like a conventional book except that it is not tangible and its Acrobat reader comes with all the electronic wonders you except from e-book readers. You can zoom to a particular page, insert electronic bookmarks, consult a digital Thesaurus, adjust the font size, click on live hyperlinks, turn the leaves by either scrolling or paging and so on. PDF books can also be read on any computer operating system, including Macintosh, Linux and Unix.’

Digital books are written using word processors such a Microsoft Word and then converted into e-book format using software generally referred to as e-book compilers. The compliers, such as Adobe Acrobat for Windows are NOT given away free. Other E-book creators include Activ E-book Compiler, E-Book Edit Pro, E-Book Generator and Pro Compiler.

 

Support independent 



publishing: Buy this e-book on Lulu.  Share on Facebook I

< Return to Home page