Digital collections for individual subscribers

Exact Editions is now working with publishers to develop collections of books for sale to institutions and individual enthusiasts and collectors. One of the first collections, from the poetry publisher Carcanet, is now available on the Exact Editions platform. It provides immediate access to 70 books from the Carcanet list of poetry and literature and subscribers will get access to an additional 30+ books in the course of their first year subscription.

The Carcanet publisher, Michael Schmidt, likens his collection to a zoo for poetry lovers:

Most poetry readers have a handful of poets they know well and they are often wary of going outside their familiar spaces. If they suddenly have access to a whole zoo, they might well get beyond the giraffes and elephants and find an okapi or the butterfly house, or the hihi bird, assuming New Zealand still exports such creatures…

Carcanet’s books are carefully presented and typeset, so that the look and proportion of each poem on its page matters. The Exact Editions platform replicates each page exactly as it is in print so the ‘feel’ of the digital book is very similar to the feel of the print book, and of course, all page numbers and page citations match up perfectly to the print. This importance of layout and design makes the platform a very good fit for poetry publishers. But there are many other classes of book that have a careful layout or design and if they have a potential market with libraries and institutions they should be sold in a way that respects their design values.

from Vahni Capildeo’s Measures of Expatriation

Exact Editions has been developing the platform to sell well illustrated books as collections to libraries for over a year. The Carcanet Collection is the first to be offered as an annual subscription to individuals (£49.99 or $64.99 for the full set for a year), and Exact Editions’ Managing Director, Daryl Rayner, thinks that the ability to sell collections also to individuals is win-win for publishers, authors and readers. “We have been selling subscriptions to digital consumer magazines to individuals and libraries for over 10 years, the case for also offering high quality books as a subscription package for individuals is really a no-brainer”.

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