AnzAuthors Blog   

E-publishing. What is it and where will it take us?

What is it?

E-publishing is the distribution of information via electronic devices. The number of works published online in this alternative form of publishing has made a massive leap forward in recent years. Due in no small way, I am sure, to the development in technology of handheld portable electronic readers.

Image courtesy ClipArt Etc
From 1440 in Germany and the invention of the Gutenberg press, to the 1830s Penny Dreadfuls and the advent of paperback books a century later, in our increasingly digital world, information is now delivered instantly for the want it now generation. E-books are a fast and great value buy – usually cheaper than print – and downloaded in seconds. They are a digital version of a print book specially designed to read on computers or e-book reading devices.

Books are usually cheaper in this format and, unlike their print versions, don’t have a limited shelf life but are available long term. An author’s backlist that previously might have been out of print can now find new life in this latest format. This makes their stories available to another generation of readers.

I was amazed to recently discover that e-publishing is 40 years old this year since the first book was created and made available electronically in 1971 by Michael Hart – the American Declaration of Independence. Source:    

Where will it take us in the future?
Who knows? But from my own personal author’s viewpoint, I see it as an exciting extra dimension of the publishing world, keeping pace with 21st century technology and the needs of its reading population. Its popularity is supported by its growth so I doubt it will fade anytime soon. E-publishing will ultimately allow all my backlist to reach a new readership  and the writer usually receives higher royalties.

Once I master the fiddly process of self-publishing, it is uplifting to see the stories I worked so hard to produce still have another life and be available in this latest version, keeping pace with trends. I could never imagine not holding a book in my hands but I look forward to embracing the new e-publishing direction for literature. It can only promote reading and that’s a plus.

What does this new arena of publishing mean for authors and readers?

As an author, what are your thoughts and predictions on the e-publishing phenomenon?

As a reader, do you like and embrace the new direction and format?

Do you have an e-reader? If so, what has been your experience with it?


 Written by Noelene Jenkinson  

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