As a “computer guy” coming to the world of publishing, I read a lot about the world of high technology and startups, so I couldn’t help but notice this book/experiment: Every Book is a Startup
He describes the project in more detail here: http://toddsattersten.com/2011/07/my-summer-project-every-book-is-a-startup.html
Briefly, he’s going to write the book a bit at a time, and people who have purchased it will get updates “free”. He will also change direction depending on the feedback he gets.
So far, it’s pretty brief, and seems a bit more geared to the author’s area of expertise in business books than, say, fiction. However, for $5, I’m willing to give it a shot and see how it grows with time.
In particular, I think it’s an interesting way of taking advantage of the fact that eBooks are much more flexible than paper books. With a paper book, it would be extremely expensive to ship an update every month or two (although of course you could simply call it a “magazine”!), but an eBook is a much more fluid vehicle for publishing. Perhaps one negative aspect we may see with this in the future is that it’s harder to declare something “done” if it’s very easy to update. In practice, this doesn’t seem to be an issue with books we’ve published at LiberWriter so far.