Tablo

Medium for ebooks.

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Ryan HooverPro@rrhoover · Founder, Product Hunt
I like that Tablo helps build a more direct connection with authors and readers but I don't see a way for them to interact with one another. Like on Medium, I would LOVE to be able to ask the author questions or add my commentary inline within the book. There's also a big opportunity in gathering feedback from readers before publishing a book but I haven't found an easy way to do so. @nireyal shared a pre-release version of Hooked: How to Build Habit-Forming Products via Google Docs with his followers (which sort of worked but as soon as 100+ people joined the doc, it would freeze). Hundreds of people read and annotated what they liked, didn't like, found confusing, etc. This crowdsourced editing improved the final product and made readers feel a part of the creation of the book (and they were to a small extent).
Ash Davies@photoguides · Tablo.io
@rrhoover This is a really nice thought. Building a great feedback and collaboration tool is a really exciting concept for us. Medium's a great source of inspiration for inline comments and contextual discussions, but we're also drawing a lot of inspiration from YouTube. Ultimately, we'd love share a map of a reader's engagement with a book - kind of like YouTube's audience retention graphs. It's all technically possible, we just have to nail the design :)
Matt Lanham@mattlanham · Founder of geckoengage.com
Seems really nice, having the editor in there really helped to engage me quickly and start writing something. I tried Liberio yesterday but it seems more geared towards turning existing books into ePub, so I quickly got stuck, so Tablo certainly has my vote.
Tom MasieroHunter@blendahtom · GM of LaunchBit
Similar to Liberio. Would love for @PhotoGuides to jump in and discuss this beautiful product.
Ash Davies@photoguides · Tablo.io
@BlendahTom Thanks for sharing Tom!
Tom MasieroHunter@blendahtom · GM of LaunchBit
@photoguides my pleasure!
Nathan Bashaw@nbashaw · Head of Product at Gimlet Media
Lots of startups in this space — it'll be interesting to see if any of them can pull away from the pack and start to attract serious authors. To me the most interesting so far is Wattpad, which has managed build a community of readers interested in reading stories by non-traditional indie authors. Lots of fan fiction, romance, short stories, etc.
Ben Parr@benparr · Co-founder and CMO, Octane AI
There are a decent amount of these -- I'm pitched one every few months. What's the differentiator here?
Ash Davies@photoguides · Tablo.io
@benparr You're right, there are a few eBook publishing tools in the space. The breakthrough for us was realising that eBooks don't matter - it's the connection between the author and readers that matter. With other tools you can create a book and publish it, but with Tablo you can be a new, emerging author with a single chapter and immediately build a following. It's more about the discovery layer than the eBooks - bestsellers can now be spotted before they've been published.
Ben Parr@benparr · Co-founder and CMO, Octane AI
@photoguides The issue here is that, more than anything, authors/bloggers care about amplification and platform. Medium works because it's both beautiful AND it has a decent-sized userbase that can drive pageviews. This has the feeling of a chicken and egg problem, where for it to attract decent authors, it needs to have traffic, and for it to have traffic, it needs decent authors. Authors typically don't have followings, so you're going to have to provide it in the beginning. How will you get that without decent authors to attract people first? Side note: Bestsellers aren't found -- they're made, and once pieces of a book have been unveiled, it loses most of its capability to be a bestseller. Bestsellers are all about up-front sales.
Ash Davies@photoguides · Tablo.io
@benparr It's a challenge, but we've made great progress. We've hand picked a few bestselling authors, across a few genres and niches, and sponsored them write their next books on Tablo. Their campaigns will be launching soon. Our authors engagement is already really strong, readers are the next step. We have a few products in the works that are tailored around the reading experience - I unfortunately can't share these yet. It's an interesting progression for us. We've been focusing relentlessly on our authors and accidentally built a two sided marketplace. Our early numbers are looking strong though, we just need to invest in both sides of the market to keep things going.