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Archive for June 15th, 2009:

The Digi-Novel Puts the Multi in Multimedia

posted June 15, 2009

Posted by Mariko Fujinaka in publishing technology trends

Photo courtesy of the Level 26 web site

Photo courtesy of the Level 26 web site

If you find it tough to get through a long book these days, you are not alone–Anthony Zuiker, the man behind the popular CSI television series, admits he can’t get through a 400-page book, and now he’s doing something about it. Zuiker inked a deal with¬†imprint Dutton to produce a series of three “digi-novels,” novels that come with accompanying videos.

The first of the series, Level 26: Dark Origins, is scheduled for release in September 2009. The books will be cowritten by Zuiker and writer and comic book creator Duane Swierczynski. Each digi-novel includes a book plus 20 3-minute videos (Zuiker calls them “cyber-bridges”) that readers can access online. The videos are intended to enhance the reading experience. A video will be available every 20 pages or so.

For those who fear the books themselves will be poorly written and the whole thing smelling too gimmicky, rest assured; Dutton’s Brian Tart, who is responsible for the deal with Zuiker, said in USA Today that the books must be of high quality and “have to stand on their own as books.” He added that “publishers need to experiment with new ways of engaging readers. Books were a primary form of entertainment when there were only a couple of TV channels and no Internet.”

For more information, see Swierczynski’s post about his involvement with the project.