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On digital publishing in 2014 » Elliot Jay Stocks

Dev.Opera — Responsive Images: Use Cases and Documented Code Snippets to Get You Started

On Web Typography

Jason Santa Maria’s newly published book on the art of web typography

"Typography is your design’s voice and the most powerful tool you have to communicate with your readers. Learn how to wield type with care and wit: how to evaluate typefaces, consider technical constraints, create flexible typographic systems, and put together your own collection of favorite faces.

Jason Santa Maria wants you to see type beyond code or flourishes. You’ll discover how typography shapes the way we read and how you can adapt the craft’s practices for the screen. So go ahead. Choose, combine, and set typefaces with ease—and invite readers in.”

How to create a book out of your blog posts

In our last blog post, we discussed reasons to reuse articles or content for yourself, your publication or your company. Today we’re going to take a deeper dive into one way to do exactly that. We will cover how to create a book out of a blog. (You can see examples of books like these here on our samples page: http://woop.ie/samples.html.)


You’ll need a Woopie account, if you don’t already have one.
Click here to sign up for an account.


Simply use Woopie’s “Create from Blog” button. Add the URL of your blog and click “import.” It’s as easy as that!


Perhaps you want to focus the content a bit more. If you don’t want the last ten posts of your blog, you can also import a custom RSS feed or one sorted by tags or categories. 

As an example, here’s the RSS feed from Inc.com with only the “startup advice” posts: 

Here’s an RSS feed from Woopie with only the “epub” posts: 

Using WordPress for your blog? Getting a specific RSS feed from WordPress is really easy. Just type your URL plus either “category” or “tag” followed by the word you want and then “/feed/“. 

Some examples: 

Tumblr is just as easy. It’s just the URL followed by “tagged” and the category name. 

Some examples:

You’re all set to publish your book and then a new article is posted to the blog, which you’d like to include. Do you have to start over? 

Nope. You can simply import that extra article right from its URL. Go to the article listing. At the top right, you’ll see a “New Article From URL” button. Click that and paste in the URL of the article. Woopie does the rest. 


Creating a self-contained ebook for Amazon or iBooks requires us to import your images or they will appear as broken links. However the image importing takes a bit more time than just the text. 


As a rule of thumb, you can skip image importing if you just need a web version of your book or the content will always be online. If you need it to be available offline, it is safer to import the images. 


You can now simply click the “Generate” button on the article listing page to have Woopie create your book. Simple!

Next week we’ll cover previewing and publishing your work through Woopie. In the meantime, be sure to check out our ebook samples at http://woop.ie/samples.html.

Woopie’s simple RSS import function means it’s a snap to pull in your best blog posts and turn them into ready-to-sell ebooks. Try it for free for 30 days at http://woop.ie/

The evolution of the Kindle

The evolution of the Kindle

News:Rewired Showcase

A great collection of components to help tell interactive stories

My first quarter century

Repurposing your content to save time & build your audience

Have you been thinking about repurposing some of the great writing you have produced? For a lot of companies and publishers, this just makes good business sense. Spending time and money on creating great articles often means that they have a longer lifespan and will stay relevant, so why not take advantage of that and give them a broader audience? 

The possibilities are endless for reusing written content. From blog posts to newsletters to ebooks to annual reports and interactive documents, if it is thoughtful and well-written, it likely does not need to be a one-time-use article. 

Responsive blog themes & templates are good ways to keep valuable content readable and accessible. This way, no matter how readers choose to view articles, whether through a mobile RSS-reader, a desktop browser or on a tablet, it is easy to do so. But there are additionally many reasons readers may want or need to read offline, ranging from distractions online to poor wifi signals in certain areas to wanting to binge on a particular subject, and beyond. 

Here are some of the ways we are seeing people do this today: 

  •  - Offering a “Best of” collection of articles and blog posts for readers who want an offline-capable copy to binge (movies page sample)
  •  - Giving away an ebook to help customers learn more and get them onto useful mailing lists
    (just like Woopie customer ReadyForZero: http://blog.readyforzero.com/)
  •  - Creating an interactive or highlighted version of a document or report
    (just like Woopie customer Gov’t of Maharashtra:
  •  - Moving the best content into a subscription or “premium access” type of site
    (just like Woopie customer Idea magazine:
  •  - Reusing snippets of blog posts for a collection of highlights for a customer or investor newsletter 
  •  - Doing a deep-dive on articles where readers are asking for more information or discussion 
  •  - Highlighting articles which have moved back into the spotlight due to recent news events or announcements

Revenue Opportunity
If you need another incentive to reuse your existing content, how about revenue? Once you’ve created additional versions of your publication or articles, they can go into the Amazon store as a Kindle book, the iBooks store, Google Play Books, the Nook store. Or sell it on your own site. Put it behind a paywall or offer the downloadable versions to paying customers. 

Who pays for freely available content? 
Why would readers pay for content that is already available for free on the web? I wondered too, so I asked several avid readers who have bought books like this through the Kindle store. Most of their answers fell into one of three categories:

“I had been reading her stuff for a while so for me it was a way to give back or show some appreciation”
“I can’t read on the web, everything is so distracting - when I want to focus I put things on my Kindle”
“I wanted to have this on my Kindle for easy access, I find myself reading these posts frequently so I’m happy to pay for the convenience.”

Image courtesy of https://www.flickr.com/photos/43602175@N06/

With readers trending toward paying for content they value and appreciate (success stories like The Information, The Intercept, and over $53M pledged to publishing projects on Kickstarter are great examples), it is a good time to think about how to make your writing more valuable for your community, whether that means enabling offline reading, not making them pinch-and-zoom to read

Woopie’s simple RSS import function means it’s a snap to pull in your best blog posts and turn them into ready-to-sell ebooks. Try it for free for 30 days at http://woop.ie/

Backgrounds don’t have to be static

Here’s a clever use of SVG animation combined with scrolling, used to neat effect here on a New York Times article

Five Things You Should Know About Metadata