Precious Cargo coverThis may seem kind of random, but Vanguard Press (the publishers of Clyde Ford's new novel Precious Cargo) has agreed to allow me to show a HUGE preview of the book since they picked up on my blog entry, "Precious Cargo, by Clyde Ford." It's fantastic to know my blog is being read by so many different types of audiences. You can read the first 11 chapters of Precious Cargo via a PDF on my SkyDrive site. Wow! For those of you who know my undergraduate degree was in English, Creative Writing, you know I'm psyched about this!

The online interaction with the novel uses Virtual Earth to pinpoint and highlight specific locations mentioned throughout or significant to the novel. I was impressed to actually see polygons and embedded video and images on the map - very nice! Also, watch the eerie video preview featuring Morgan Freeman on Clyde Ford's web site.

I asked the publishers why use Virtual Earth to promote the book? It's a pretty incredible idea, so I wanted to know the driving force behind the decision. Per the author himself, Clyde Ford said, "We're losing a generation of readers to the Internet and to visual means of entertainment. I wanted to show that a book can be as exciting as a film and as engaging as a video game. I also wanted to give my readers the thrill of experiencing an area that I know intimately from two decades of cruising the Inside Passage aboard my boat. The satellite imagery is so good that I can actually tag the building where I set the climactic ending scene from Precious Cargo."

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And, it looks like this is only the beginning. Per the folks at Vanguard, "This is a state-of-the-art example of an author taking the tools of modern technology and enhancing the craft of storytelling, expanding what the reader experiences and adding layers of detail that would have been impossible before now. Not every book is appropriate to this sort of integrated content, but the nature of Precious Cargo made it a perfect candidate, and Clyde's own technical background made it possible for him to engineer the breakthrough."

Well done, sir. You've sold at least one more copy of your book as a part of your efforts.

CP