As the age of technology produces even more advancements, people young and old have discovered the ways of piracy. For years Hollywood and the music industry have been bending over backwards to stop people from pirating their products. As the Internet and e-books become increasingly popular, pirated books are popping up on many P2P (peer-to-peer) file sharing networks.
(Previously published in the Taking Charge blog.)
TSTC Publishing, the publishing arm of Texas State Technical College (TSTC), recently presented the Texas Youth Commission (TYC) more than 200 books to the McLennan County State Juvenile Correctional Facility Unit 2 in Mart. “Taking Charge: Your Education, Your Career, Your Life is a book related to personal growth so students can see these skills are part of an integral part of the ongoing development of life,” said Publisher Mark Long. “We are delighted to present this best-selling book to a local TYC school dedicated to helping young men turn their lives around. Two of our staff members, Marketing Manager Sheila Boggess and Sales Manager Wes Lowe are involved as volunteers at the Mart facility.” The book is written by Katharine O’Moore-Klopf and Karen Mitchell Smith.
There is a lot to be said about readers. Those who persist in an understated medium, an art form that may appear to be losing a battle with the distractions of electronic amusement. It is a comforting image: a young person curled up in a chair by the window, sunlight streaming in and illuminating the pages of the book clutched in eager hands. The image celebrates those whose imaginations are still active enough to be able to derive pleasure from words woven to educate, to provoke, or to entertain. That said, I have discovered a new appreciation for those who make books. While I highly uphold writers on a pedestal, people possessing a gift and a passion for stringing together words and birthing new ideas, new worlds, new people; I am speaking instead about book producers. As an intern, my new-found admiration is for book publishers.
Matt Stewart, a San Francisco-based writer, posted his entire book, The French Revolution, on Twitter. All 95,000 words of it. This experiment took him four months and 5,000 tweets to complete. With the advancement of technology and all the new forms of communication, Stewart was seeking another way to reach his audience. Now his book is coming out in print form but that isn’t stopping him from trying to make book reading more interesting. He has teamed up with Ricoh Innovations to create a free companion iPhone application to the book. He is intrigued with the idea of giving books the same kind of bonus features and deleted scenes as movies have. An iPad would be able to do this, showing pictures of different locations from the book and interviews, but not many people are reading books on the iPad yet.
It’s been a few weeks since TSTC Publishing staffed its last booth of the season at the National Institute for Staff and Organizational Development (NISOD) in Austin. Since October when I started with TSTC Publishing, I’ve helped to staff a booth at the Texas Book Festival in Austin, Texas Community College Teachers Association (TCCTA) in Houston, Texas Library Association (TLA) in San Antonio, American Wind Energy Association (AWEA) in Dallas and this last one in Austin. While certainly not a pro yet, I, at least, can say I’ve gained experience in using conferences to help get the word out about our books.