Digital Serialization

One of our readers just sent a link to this article in Crain’s about a partnership between DailyLit and Grove/Atlantic to e-serialize Mike Lawson’s House Rules before the book is officially released.

DailyLit, an online service that delivers installments of books via email or RSS feeds, announced on Wednesday a deal with publisher Grove/Atlantic to serialize House Rules, a thriller by Mike Lawson, ahead of the book’s June 10 publication date.

The deal marks Mamaroneck, N.Y.-based DailyLit’s first new-title deal. The company, which works with publishers that include Chronicle Books, Oxford University Press and Harlequin, as well as a library of open source publications, has in the past distributed books only after their print release date. House Rules—to be released in 139 installments, for $9.95—marks its first title to be released pre-publication, an option DailyLit says can help publishers create hype before a book is released.

For whatever, I love serialized novels, and plan on trying out DailyLit at some point. (Though probably with one of the free offerings.) I know E.J. is skeptical of this format, figuring he (and by extension, most people) would fall behind, and the rss/e-mail bits would pile up and up until reaching the point when it was like reading the full book, but in e-mails. Which I can see happening—especially with Moby Dick or something like that—but I think I’d personally keep on top of it for a new book that I’m getting a chance to read weeks before it’s released. (For instance, I would pay $10 for a serialized version of the 1000+ page 2666 if the sections started appearing in June . . .)

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