Monthly Archives: July 2013

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Transcript for the 7/28/13 #storyappchat: Story Interactivity with Andrea Phillips

Here’s the transcript for the July 28, 2013 #storyappchat, a weekly Twitter gathering where we discuss all things related to creating storybook apps and ebooks for kids. Guest host author Andrea Phillips (@andrhia) talks about Story Interaction and Transmedia. More about Andrea at deusexmachinatio.com/about-me

AND the first episode of Andrea’s Book of Secrets (The Daring Adventures of Captain Lucy Smokeheart) will be 100% free for two days starting tomorrow, July 29-30, 2013! Download the Kindle edition for free!

Guest Host for the 7/28/13 #storyappchat: Andrea Phillips, on Story Interaction

Andrea Phillips, award-winning transmedia writer

Andrea Phillips, award-winning transmedia writer

We’re excited to have author Andrea Phillips as our guest host this week. Andrea is an award-winning transmedia writer, game designer and author. Her book, A Creator’s Guide to Transmedia Storytelling, is published by McGraw-Hill. We’ll explore different kinds of interaction, “particularly the kind that makes the reader feel like they’ve stumbled into a piece of the story themselves. It’s a really wonderful, magical feeling. On a simple level it can be done with letters and photographs from characters in the story, but it could also be creating ways to ex. send email to a character in the story and have them email you back.”

Andrea’s work includes includes a variety of educational and commercial projects, including Floating City with Thomas Dolby, The Maester’s Path for HBO’s Game of Thrones with Campfire Media, The Drunk and On Drugs Happy Funtime Hour Quest with Stitch Media, America 2049 with human rights nonprofit Breakthrough, Routes Game for Channel 4 Education, the independent commercial ARG Perplex City, and The 2012 Experience for Sony Pictures.

Help us welcome Andrea to #storyappchat this Sunday, July 28, at 9:00 p.m. Eastern/6:00 p.m. Pacific. Just start including the #storyappchat hashtag to participate, or try using our new #TWUBS account, twubs.com/storyappchat. And follow @storyappchat for resources, transcripts and updates! Follow us on Facebook too. We’ll see you there.

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Transcript for the 7/21/13 #storyappchat: Open Mic Night

Transcript for the 7/21/13 #storyappchat: Open Mic Night

Here’s the transcript for the July 21, 2013 #storyappchat, a weekly Twitter gathering where we discuss all things related to creating storybook apps and ebooks for kids. The topic for this edition was “Open Mic Night” — we chose topics on the fly including app tracking, COPPA, parents only area…

Open Mic Night for #storyappchat THIS Sunday, July 21, 2013

Plan to drop by the weekly #storyappchat this coming Sunday [July 21] at 9 p.m. Eastern (6 p.m. Pacific) for Open Mic Night. That’s right–the topic or topics are up to YOU. The possibilities are endless:

  • Writers and illustrators: ask the developers about the ins and outs of getting your story built into an app or ebook
  • Story app developers and story app service providers: meet and get to know talented digital artists and writers; find out what your users like and don’t like about your apps
  • Moms, dads, teachers and caregivers: find out about new apps for your kids, and discover how they were created

Since you can create your own topic during the chat hour, there’s no reason why we won’t be seeing YOU this Sunday night at 6 pm PT/ 9 pm ET. Use the #storyappchat hashtag, and tweet away!

P.S. Try using our new #TWUBS account, http://twubs.com/storyappchat and follow @storyappchat for resources, transcripts and updates!

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Transcript for the 7/14/13 #storyappchat: Sponsored Apps

Transcript for the 7/14/13 #storyappchat: Sponsored Apps

Here is the transcript for the July 14, 2013 #storyappchat, a very lively discussion on a rather controversial topic, which was “Sponsored Apps: Finding the Right Balance.” Enjoy and we’ll see you next week!

Topic for the 7/14/13 #storyappchat: Sponsored Apps

#storyappchat topic badgeNobody likes ads in their apps, right? Well, it depends. Sometimes unobtrusive ads are OK if it means we get the app for free. And the placement and handling of the ad(s) or product mention(s) make a huge difference. A simple welcome screen including the words “sponsored by” and a company name is a lot more palatable than rotating pop-up ads that insist you view them before moving on in the app.

As creators of storybook apps for kids, we need to be very careful how we incorporate ads in our products, if at all. In fact, a recent update for a book app  that customers had already paid for included new ads, and users were presented with the option to pay again in order to remove the ads. This was an unfortunate decision, especially in an app designed for children featuring trusted, popular characters. There are ways to monetize content without making people feel as though they’re getting ripped off.

On the other hand, if done tastefully and unobtrusively, a sponsorship could make the difference between an app or ebook getting made or not. Perhaps more companies with deep pockets will be willing in the future to pay to sponsor our work, in exchange for a mention and website link. This could be placed on a “For Parents” page in an electronic story, so as not to interfere with the reading experience for a youngster.

Let’s talk about the pros and cons of introducing sponsors and other paid content in apps and ebooks during the next #storyappchat, this Sunday (July 14) at 9:00 p.m. Eastern/6:00 p.m. Pacific. Just start tweeting using the #storyappchat hashtag to take part!

Last Week’s Transcript: on Monday morning I tweeted a link to the 7/7/13 transcript (Selling in Non-U.S. Markets), but if you missed it, the link is here. Follow us on Twitter to get all the latest updates!

Topic for the 7/7/13 #storyappchat: Selling in Other Countries

#storyappchat topic badgeI admit with some embarrassment that #storyappchat is somewhat USA-centric. Since all of us involved with keeping the chat and blog going are here in the States, it’s easy to forget that there is a lot of exciting mobile development (and great stories being written and illustrated) in other parts of the world. I’d like to be more clued in to what’s going on internationally.

In addition, there are real and potential sales from mobile customers in other countries, and both Apple and Amazon make it pretty easy to start selling internationally. But what are the things to watch out for when making apps and ebooks available worldwide? Should our content be translated? What are the best ways to reach customers who don’t speak English?

Let’s discuss the realities, both positive and negative, of selling storybook apps in other countries during the next #storyappchat. We’ll kick things off at 9:00 p.m. Eastern/6:00 p.m. Pacific on Sunday, July 7.