Writing for Publication/Display Formats

Amazon recently announced a new, shorter format for its ereader called Kindle Singles (cue mental image of floppy yellow-orange cheese square). The works to be published will range from 10,000 to 30,000 words. Part of Amazon’s marketing spiel includes a “call to serious writers, thinkers, scientists, business leaders, historians, politicians and publishers” to submit their work. New authors, new revenue for Ama$on. What do you think, writers (“serious” writers, that is)? Will this be an interesting option for you?

This got me thinking about writing for constraints: cutting or adding words and ideas to fit publishing formats such as a novella, a novel, a news article. One of my favorite examples of writing as “constrained publication format” is theĀ  wacky and brilliant piece Daft Bodies. I know it’s just hot chicks grooving to pop music, but I think it’s a fine illustration of recombinant writing:

I come across quite a few lovely pieces that make good use of the constraints of display technology, but with text that is far from engaging. Dentsu London’s pretty “iPad writing” comes to mind:

What would you write, if it was to be featured in this type of three-dimensional typography animation?

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3 thoughts on “Writing for Publication/Display Formats

  1. Well, longer short stories (I guess this would go up to novella length) are really hard to place, so…I’m hesitantly optimistic about it? What’s your first impression, Aya?

  2. i am definitely optimistic about Kindle Singles. i bet young adult novels will sell well, kids reading on their parents’ devices. will it have an impact on longer books similar to itunes’ effect on albums? how will the authors promote their work?

  3. I’d also think it would work well for graphic work, comics or novels, as well as serials, maybe chapbooks, short collections, even magazines or one-offs. Seems to have a lot of potential. Although I just looked into how to make a book into an e-format, and man, it’s a pain in the butt.

    It would be fun to release something, a “single” as we’re calling it, one long short story, to get your work out to more people. I can also see more people doing this themselves, as promotion, really.

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