Lori Colbeck’s innovative idea to get readers involved in the writing process has me thinking about the future of digital publishing, its audience and innovation.

Colbeck will be launching www.booksfromscratch.com, a site that will allow authors to contribute chapters to a story, which site visitors will then vote on to dictate the narrative of the final book.

Colbeck’s project involves audience interactivity during the creation of the book, but with reader involvement becoming more and more popular the natural direction of development is interactivity in the final digitally-published product.

Interactivity and reader control are areas that video has already tackled. Since 2005 the term interactive video has been on the rise – its main benefit being allowing viewers to choose from set options, taking the narrative down their own route – giving them the sense of control.

Radio YouTube interactive video is a great example of user involvement and power

The future for digital publishing could see readers engaging and customising publications in a similar way that they do in an interactive video, taking the next step-up from Colbeck’s idea. The progression being that each readers experience will be completely bespoke, they choose what content they want and don’t want coming to them, resulting in personalised custom editions of a single publication with filters set just for them.

Another exciting future development for digital publishing to look forward too and maintain a close eye on over the next few years. You can be sure that as digital publishing develops so will Page Lizard.

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