Saturday, October 20, 2012

What the Heck is an Ebook Anyway?....Author Margaret Lesh gives us a Primer

As much as we tout the digital age of publishing, there is still a huge faction of people that don't love or even own an ereader.  My own father falls in this category.  He wants to support his little girl (me), but hasn't the first idea where books have gone in the last decade.  When I read this post, I knew I had to share it.  It's so simple and straightforward.  This one's for my Daddy.

There’s This eBook I Want To Read. Now What..?

or… StoryRhyme’s Relatively Painless and Slightly Boring Guide to Ebooks so You Can Download Fifty Shades of Grey...
Note: I’ve been meaning to write this post for a while now, but each time I try to write it, I fall asleep. Here is my post on ebooks. Now I’ll go take that nap.

With my debut novel’s recent publication as an ebook , I’ve received thousands of (umm, a few) questions from folks. For many, ebooks are newfangled, slightly scary, and a little mysterious. There are many misconceptions, and many of us are learning—especially those of us who aren’t, erm, techies.

What is an Ebook?

Technically, an ebook is nothing more than a file that you download to your computer, phone, tablet, etc., to read.

So, an ebook is not a physical book one can hold in their hands, but it is in every other sense a book with a delightful cover, an index, dedication, chapters, and an acknowledgements page at the end. It’s been professionally edited and published by a real publisher (there are also some great self-published ebooks).

So, it's just the "electronic version" of any book you'd find in your local bookstore and library.

The quality of any ebook, as with traditionally-published books, varies, but one can almost always read a sample of the book on to see if it piques their interest.

What are the Advantages of an Ebook?

Ebooks do have some advantages over paper books. Here are but a few: They’re usually far less-expensive than their paper book counterparts because they don’t cost as much to produce, ship and stock. They’re searchable, can contain hyperlinks to further information, imbed media (pictures, audio, movies). You can even easily change the type size and style! (Take that, tiny hard-to-read print.)

Depending on your ebook reader, they can even be read aloud by your device (phone, tablet, computer).

Oh, and there are thousands of free ebooks available; from classics to newly-released titles.

You can carry your entire book library around in your pocket!

What do I Need to Read an Ebook?

Very good question, if I do say so myself. You may read your shiny ebook on your computer (if you’re the iconoclastic type), or your iPad (if you’re very cool), iPod (yeah, we know you), your Kindle (if you’re a trendsetter), your Android phone (if you’re one of the hip ones), your Blackberry (if you still have one of those), or your netbook (if you’re like me). You can read your ebook on pretty much anything with a screen and a reader. Yes, people read ebooks on their mobile phones. I’ve seen this; I know it happens.

What are the most common ebook formats? (Another very good question. I give myself ten points.)

Epub—developed as an industry standard. Use if you have a Nook, iPad, iPhone, iPod, Android phones and tablets.


PDF—Most Windows-based and Mac computers.


A common misconception: I can’t buy an ebook on because I don’t own a Kindle.

Untrue! Anyone can purchase an ebook from (the behemoth of the ebook world). As long as you have a way to read the book on whatever device you choose, you may purchase from Musa Publishing offers ebooks in all four main formats, so this is very handy, and everyone can join in the ereading fun. (Yes, I just wrote that.)

Okay, Really, I Just Want to Read an Ebook.

Here’s one super-fast and easy way: Just go here and download Amazon’s free Kindle app and start reading... 

It doesn’t matter what computery thingy you have. If you have an iPod, iPhone or iPad. If you have an Android phone or tablet. If you have any Macintosh. If you have a Windows PC or laptop. Even if you have a Blackberry or Windows phone. Everything works!

Once you have the free Kindle app, you can use it to find and read just about any ebook out there. It's really that simple.

I hope you’ve enjoyed StoryRhyme’s instructional guide. Questions? Feel free to post, and we’ll see if we can help you.

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