As our Kickstarter project starts heading to its finish we’re working hard here at the Airstream Chronicles to provide a little more content behind what it is we’re doing. Yesterday we popped up an update video over at Kickstarter comparing our experiences in a National Monument and a National Park over the Labor Day weekend. Hands down, our experience at the National Monument was more satisfying due to the difference in the number of people. Check out the post and video linked above if you like.
Today we’ve been working all day (and several days before) on a sample chapter to share with backers. And that sample chapter is now ready to roll. It covers Hovenweep National Monument, and it’s in PDF format. In total, when this project is completed the E-Book will be listed through Kindle, through Apple’s IBook store, and in PDF download format as well. We’ll leave it up to readers to decide on what platform they prefer to use and make sure we’re not restrictive on that front. Today’s PDF example is not my preference, but currently InDesign cannot make a “Fixed Layout epub” with active links. It’s a bug, and that is one that will certainly be worked out in under 6 months.
While we’re going to produce “The RV’ers Guide to the National Monuments of the Southwest,” in standard book format (6 x 9 inches), I’m very excited about the E-Book version. If you’ve followed along for any amount of time you know that:
- I’m full time in a 25 foot Airstream.
- There’s not a lot of space in a 25 foot Airstream.
- Avoiding adding additional items to my home is almost a recreational activity at this point.
- I’m a tech junkie!
- I have an iPad and I know how to use it.
- Most of my training books are on my iPad instead of in real book form, saving me tons of space (see above), satisfying my tech lust, and keeping my library close at hand whenever I need to refer to something.
The E-Book format allows for so much more than your standard book. First of all reference links can be built right into your publication. If I’m talking about Hovenweep in a chapter I can link readers right to the official monument website (which I did). Another selling point for me would be the images. While they’re formatted with text around them, a reader can simply double tap the image to zoom it up to full screen. All the images put into the E-Book will be high resolution, and readers will be able to enjoy the photos full screen if they choose to do so. Oh, and here’s another…. Embedded video in the E-Book. We can actually place video clips into chapters if we find locations that warrant the video.
In total, the E-Book format will be less expensive than a traditional printed publication, it will take less space in your RV, it’s highly portable (put it on your computer, tablet, phone, whatever), and it has a host of features to enhance the reader’s experience.
Several years ago Scott Kelby, creator of Photoshop User Magazine, came out with a new magazine for photographers called “Light It.” The e-zine was the first I ever bought, and I was blown away. Video demonstrations in the magazine, zoomable images, and I keep them all on my iPad instead of stacking physical magazines in the Airstream. It was a win all the way around!
If you like the sound of all of this, then by all means help back the project today! We have 13 days remaining, so every backer helps. And feel free to share the project on Facebook, Twitter, Tumbler, and the rest of the social media outlets. This project is too big to do on a weekend here or there, and we’d like to focus 100% on launching a great new guidebook that will be available next year just in time for RV’ers to hit the road on their family vacations! Anything you can do to help get this project out there is appreciated!