Is this the future of coach education materials? Maybe…
Since my book was released yesterday, I already have some frequently asked questions, and I want to give a clear description of exactly what it is and why it is only available in its current format. You can also view my previous post with screen shots, and I hope to have the introduction video, which appears at the beginning of the book, up later today.
To call it a “book” may be a bit of a misnomer. While it does include text, it certainly goes beyond what a traditional book is. In my research of e-books and books released in the iBookstore, none have taken advantage of the technology and types of content that are available in a digital format. The e-books I viewed in my research were simply a digital version of what could be read in a paper book.
I had been looking for a format for years, and e-pub seemed a bit challenging in being able to incorporate the dynamic content. I didn’t necessarily want to become an expert in the technology of writing a digital book, which I felt I would have to do to write the book I wanted to, so my project and ideas were put on the shelf until I could learn how to use the technology.
In 2011 I stumbled across iBooks Author, and I thought I had found the format and technology I needed to create my digital book. As I started working with it, I found some problems in how it converted to landscape to portrait orientation and the end result wasn’t exactly how I wanted it to look, and adding video was proving to be a chore. I put the project on the shelf again until I could learn more.
In late 2012, iBooks Author included an update for portrait only orientation, and most of my technical issues were solved. I wrote 101+ Pro Style Pistol Offense Plays primarily over the course of a two week period around the holidays. I had set up and written much of the content in the summer, but as I stated what it was looking like when it switched orientations wasn’t like I wanted it to be. Additionally the update of the software made adding video much easier which obviously was important for this project.
I chose the “101 plays” format because I thought it was perfect for this technology. This was a great format to make the black and white x’s and o’s diagrammed in those types of books come alive with video. Now a coach can get the diagram, but also sees exactly how that play looks when it is executed on the field with the included video cut-ups.
I understand that making this available for the iPad certainly limits my audience, but understand that my audience wasn’t necessarily book readers. It goes beyond that. This provides much more than a typical book, and currently the only format available to handle this is the iPad.
I also did a very informal poll about the price. Most advised me to offer it at a higher price. Some even suggested prices that I felt were outrageous. Typically books are around the $20 range and videos are $40. For the price of a book, the consumer gets much more. Having purchased thousands of dollars worth of coaching materials over the years, I felt that this price is fair. I foresee being able to release smaller, clinic length products at a much lower price in the future as well. Because the cost of producing iBooks (no printing involved) is less, smaller length works become a viable option.
I have the structure set up for several more works. Some of these titles will include much deeper detail on the techniques and specifics of the offensive strategies being explained. I’m excited to be able to produce more of these iBooks. Look for these in the summer.
Can I watch this on my iPhone or a smart phone? Answer: no, the format is created for optimal viewing on the iPad and the technology does not allow it at this time (this is per Apple).
Will there be a version for Kindle or Nook? Answer: At the present time, only iPad is able to handle the content that I have included. If something becomes available in the future then maybe, but that requires me to “rewrite it” in another format for use on those devices. Unless it’s very easy to do, then probably not.
Will there be a printed version of this book? Answer: No. Video and animated presentations do not play well on paper.