It is no secret that some authors prefer their solitude when working, and an author’s work is never done. With the ever-expanding digital world, they now have more opportunities to connect with their readers without ever leaving their writing caves.
So you’re excited to open up your new book, freshly downloaded to an ereader. It might be the Amazon Kindle, maybe the Barnes & Noble Nook, or even a tablet using a book app. The anticipation rises, the new download opens to the title display, then after turning a few pages it opens to the first chapter. Three words in you realize you don’t like the font. Or maybe not. It’s more likely the font style and size are the furthest thing from your mind. As you read, a few hundred other people are likely reading that same novel, but are experiencing it in entirely different ways. Aside from the personal taste and perspective every reader brings to a story, there’s also the technical components of reading devices that allow people to customize their experience, and manufacturers to reach a wider audience with ebooks.
Ten percent of people in the developed world and fifteen percent in the developing world have some degree of impairment that can seriously affect their ability to read, such as blindness, low vision, dyslexia, or motor disabilities.
It would be easy to write off visual novels because of their technological medium, but anyone who can use a computer or operate an iPad—or better yet, program a VCR—can read one.
There are so many different types of wearable tech now—watches, glasses, cameras, headsets, and more—that ignoring such a market would be a missed opportunity. While it may seem as though the publishing industry has no place in such tiny tech, research shows that there are ways that publishing companies can implement this technology to their benefit.
According to Reading Picture Books to Children by Megan Dowd Lambert, this is an opportunity for both parties to engage in “extended, cognitively challenging conversation during the reading of a book.” It’s a free-flowing narrative experience that makes space for children to develop ideas about the structure and reasoning behind the narrative and art of books.