Digital Book World 2012 has showcased a variety of forms of digital reading content or add-ons, essentially the ways that e-reading is so much more than just novels. Copia demonstrated its social reading platform and rolled out its college textbook interactivity, BookTracks offered samples of its fully integrated audio enhancements, and a variety of companies like start-ups BiblioCrunch and Robot Media demonstrated tools that authors and readers can use to develop their own ebooks and app books.
So it was no surprise that Evan Ratliff, CEO and founder of Atavist and a speaker on various panels at the event, was on hand to discuss the company’s publishing model for short-form non-fiction works. As a source for limited word count pieces and with plans to expand that platform to accepting authors’ submissions later this year, Atavist is reviving interest in the previously much-lauded essay format, much like Kindle Singles has encouraged the publication of non-anthologized short stories.
Ratliff made an interesting point in his interview with GoodEReader when he said that the popularity of short-form works like those published by Atavist and the transition of a lot of periodicals to digital format over print could lead to much longer article content than the reading public is typically accustomed to. Once the constraints of print such as the page layout and the need to balance article space versus advertising space are removed, we could see a shift to much longer and more in-depth articles than ever before.