Recipes For Successful E-Books

Liisa McCloy-KelleyThe questions editors and designers must ask when developing e-books are not only different than for printed volumes, but also different between e-versions of cookbooks and poetry collections, notes Liisa McCloy-Kelley, vice president and director of e-book development and innovation at Random House.

“With a cookbook, we’re trying to create a book that’s easy to read, that is gorgeous, that is interactive, and that is also easy to prop up on your kitchen counter and cook from,” she explains. “When we’re looking at something like a poetry title, we’re thinking about what is going to make this a good experience for someone reading the book across many different kinds of devices. The most important thing in poetry is to maintain the formatting that the author originally intended for the text.”

As resident faculty at the recently-completed Yale Publishing Course, McCloy-Kelley advised attendees to consider a radical re-do of book creation whatever the subject material.  “We’ve put information on pages bound to spines for hundreds of years, and this is an opportunity to pull that apart and give other ways to experience the book,” she tells CCC’s Chris Kenneally.

The annual Yale Publishing Course – with separate week-long programs in “Leadership Strategies in Magazine and Digital Publishing” and “Leadership Strategies in Book Publishing” –  draws mid- to senior level publishing professionals from over 30 countries, from Abu Dhabi to Athens, Shanghai to Sao Paulo, and from all over the United States. The intensive five days of each program held at Yale University includes overview lectures of industry trends and challenges, case studies, hands-on sessions involving active class participation, and one-on-one counseling with the speakers.

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