In February 2013, after letting the idea percolate for almost a year, the University of Chicago Press launched Chicago Shorts -- selections of digital short-form reads culled from the press's archive. The Shorts are a mix of chapters and sections from both previously published and unseen material, released in DRM-free e-book format. The Press announced the publication of its third batch of Shorts on January 7.
"Though we'd been kicking around the idea for quite some time, on the heels of Kindle Singles and the short-form e-book attempts of other scholarly presses, it was with the idea of making the Shorts DRM-free and focusing on a mix of new materials from engaging scholars, deep cuts from Chicago's amazing archive, and samples of the latest scholarship and high-quality short-form writing, that we moved forward," says Kristi McGuire, web and new media editor at the UCP.
The latest batch of nine winter Shorts brings the total number of e-books in the series to 24. The new Shorts include Hayek’s The Road to Serfdom: A Brief Introduction by Bruce Caldwell; Expecting: A Brief History of Pregnancy Advice by Marika Seigel; and How to Humble a Wingnut and Other Lessons from Behavioral Economics by Cass R. Sunstein, all priced at $2.99. Ice Age Forensics: Reconstructing the Death of a Wooly Bison by Dale Guthrie; We All Feel: Understanding Animal Grief and Love by Barbara J. King; The Art of Backscratching in Chicago: Driving with Ed McElroy by Neil Steinberg; and Murder in Ancient China: Two Judge Dee Mysteries by Robert van Gulik, are listed at $0.99.
UCP is aiming to deliver new batches of Shorts, available across e-book platforms and on its Web site, every four to six months.