Jan 29, 2014
I cringe at having to write this. It’s almost getting silly. It’s timely that Sunday is Groundhog Day since this is becoming like the movie Groundhog Day—where the same cycle repeats over and over again: I post a date, then I announce a further delay. Then do it again. And I am doing it again now. I hate this because I know a lot of you are eagerly awaiting the Kindle/Nook/epub version of the book. And it’s embarrassing to keep missing my own stated dates.
What’s Going On
What’s going on is this: we are using a much more complicated approach to creating the epub/mobi file. It’s more complicated than what 99% of publishers do (epub and mobi is what goes into Kindles and iBooks and Nook books). And it’s a brand new process. As a result, our contractor is taking much longer than we (or they) thought it would take to create the files. It’s also a very expensive process for us, much more handwork. But the payoff to this more complicated approach is rather good for the reader, so I think it’s worth the wait. Here are some of the benefits to this approach:
- A better match between the paper book and the ebook. So the ebook will be cleaner and be more pleasing to read.
- Active links in the Index. This is a big priority for us—I think every reference book should do this (and few do).
- Easier and more often “free” updates. I recently blogged on this. The complicated handwork is done only once in the original book files, and from then on creating new ebooks from updates to the original is easy for us. So we are more likely to release frequent updates.
Again, our apologies on the continued delay. I hesitate to even predict the next date now. Perhaps mid-February. But we’ll see. We may even beat that, or miss it!
By the way, we intend to activate Amazon’s Matchbook program where if you bought the paper book of Ed. 4, you can get the Kindle version for only $2.99. It applies even if you bought the book months ago.