Dominique RaccahFor publishers, authors and their readers, 2010 will likely go down as the year when e-books finally and decisively won a permanent place in the literary hierarchy.

At Beyond the Book, we’ve followed in recent weeks a number of angles in this important story: Covering issues from the pricing wars with Amazon and Apple, to the formatting conundrums facing authors and publishers. We will continue this special coverage in coming weeks with a focus series on e-books that debuts Wednesday, February 24, at with an interview with copyright commentator and industry iconoclast Cory Doctorow. Our regular reporting on the publishing and media industry continues here at where the e-book series will also appear on its own channel.

To set the stage, we bring back Dominique Raccah who asked many of the important questions to be confronted by publishers and authors in her keynote address to the 2009 PubWest Conference. Months ago, she gave early hints at finding opportunities in “digital products” beyond e-books, from iPhone apps to software. Understand “what you are expert at [and] which communities are you connected to,” she advised. Raccah also cautioned the audience to be on the look-out, though: “At what point does something stop being a book?

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