Writing Children’s Picture Books? Check out Ourboox.com

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Mel Rosenberg

www.Ourboox.com is a new start-up going live this week at the DLD event in Germany and the education technologies conference, BETT2014, in the UK.

Ourboox is building a growing international community of writers and illustrators sharing the world’s simplest platform for self-publishing and promoting ebooks.  Writers can easily copy text into the platform, as well as illustrations, photos, etc. They can reach out across the community to find illustrators, editors, translators and others who are wiling to collaborate. The books are free to publish and share (each book has a unique URL) across the internet. All the books are all searchable and higly ranked by search engines. Furthermore,  every time a book is created and shared among family and friends, more and more people become aware of the community, platform and website.
Ourboox was founded by Prof. Mel Rosenberg, children’s book writer, musician, scientist and inventor, and Ran Shternin,  leading web developer. Mel had the idea for ourboox after attending the Bologna children’s book fair four years ago. There he encountered four stadiums full of books from over 160 countries,and hundreds of publishers striving to achieve sales. Unpublished writers were there in droves, trying to find agents and publishers, to little avail. There he realized that for every published author, there are hundreds or thousands of writers who never find an agent or publisher.  The same is true for up-and-coming illustrators, who find it difficult to get their artwork published. “Why not connect writers and illustrators over a joint internet platform to help them help one another”, he asked himself. He bought the domain ‘ourboox.com‘ and started looking for a co-founder.
Mel looked for a computer maven to partner with for over a year, until he met Ran Shternin, who fell in love with the concept and agreed to develop the website, platform and community. Their approach was to come up with a simple and free internet platform, enabling anyone to copy and paste text and artwork. The pages would flip just like a regular book. Each book would have its own URL identity, allowing books to be shared for free via Facebook, Twitter and other social media.
Up till now, a closed but growing community of writers and illustrators have produced several dozen square-format books, which are now available on the fledgling site. There are childrern books, travel poetry, a cook book, a book of health tips, comedy, and other genres. Rosenberg and Shternin are working on a second textbook style platform, ideal for novels, and scientific theses.
Now that the site is live, Rosenberg notes that some of the books have already been read hundreds of times, and that the stories are highly ranked in Google searches. He expects that within a week or two, new writers and illustrators will begin to add books, followed by children involved in school projects.
He believes in a world of “reverse literacy” in which children love making their own books, as well as reading the works of others.
Here Mel explains what it’s all about:

About the author

Mel Rosenberg has had multiple careers as university professor, inventor, jazz musician and children’s book writer.

As professor of microbiology at Tel Aviv University he became a world authority on the diagnosis and treatment of bad breath (halitosis), and published over a hundred scientific articles, reviews and books. He held honorary academic positions at the University of London, Univerity of Pennsylvania, University of Toronto and University of Rochester. Mel has lectured internationally on science, innovation and creative thinking. His research, primarily on the diagnosis and treatment of halitosis, has been featured internationally on television, and in the printed press (New Scientist, CNN, BBC, CBC, Times of London, and Vogue. He is inventor of Dentyl Active mouthwash and other products for oral hygiene.

After taking an early retirement from Tel Aviv University, Mel has focused on education and entrepreneurship. He is founder (together with Ran Shternin) of www.ourboox.com a platform which will enable children and adults everywhere to publish and share books with a large community, while maintaining their copyrights. He believes that this initiative will disrupt current publishing and change the way that people share the excitement of writing, illustrating and creating books.

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