Digital books definitely have their advantages. I, for one, love the ability to be able to access one book or a whole library through one device, my tablet. Yet, now that I’ve published a book, friends and family keep reminding me of the one shortcoming of e-books: they cannot be autographed. Just recently, a friend asked me if I was planning on publishing the paperback version of my book because she wanted to have an autographed copy. Then, my friend Cathy asked me if I would sign her Nook. They made me wonder if signing an e-book was possible. A quick search on the Internet pointed me towards a neat service called Authorgraph. Created by Evan Jacobs, a software developer and entrepreneur, Authorgraph allows you to have the closest thing to having your e-book autographed by your favorite author. Both authors and readers must sign up for an account at the Authorgraph website. For authors, they must also create a Twitter account if they don’t have one already. Once an author has an account, he/she can “enroll” his/her book by simply entering its ASIN numbers. And that’s it. Evan will send you an e-mail requesting your authorgraph so that you can start practicing your digital signature. What the readers get is a PDF document with the book cover and a signed personal message from the author. Then readers can download the document to their devices or save it in their computers (for Kindle owners, there’s a warning that Amazon may charge a small fee for delivering the document to them). The document, however, remains separate from the e-book. To request an autograph is as easy as navigating to the book’s page on the Authorgraph website and clicking the “Request an Authorgraph” button.
I decided to sign up for Authorgraph because I think it is currently the best solution for satisfying e-book readers’ cravings for an autograph. It is not perfect but it comes close. I think it will help me connect with my fans. Also, it’s a free service for both authors and readers and it’s very user friendly. Now drawing my signature with the mouse…that’s a different story.