In a twist on the subscription e-book model, Plympton/DailyLit, a digital reading venture specializing in serialized content, is launching Rooster, a reading app that picks books for you to read and delivers them in installments to mobile devices. Rooster charges the reader $4.99 a month to get two curated book choices—a contemporary work is paired with a literary classic—each month. The app is launching with Rachel Kadish’s thriller I Was Here and Herman Melville’s classic novel, Billy Budd.
The release of the Rooster app willl be announced at SXSW Interactive by Plympton/Daily, a digital reading venture cofounded by CEO Jennifer 8 Lee, editorial director Yael Goldstein Love, and CTO Jacky Chang. Rooster’s model is based on DailyLit, an email reading service that delivers short installments of short stories, literary classics to a consumers’ device.
Love says Rooster, much like DailyLit, is a way for busy book lovers to find time to read. “We’re constantly amazed by how many people tell us they wish they had the time to read novels. We thought: if people want to read more, let’s help them find the time.”
Love says Rooster offers three services to its subscribers. Rooster has an editorial team that recommends titles. The app will recommend two books each month--one contemporary, the other a classic—to read and the Rooster subsceriber can start with either. The Rooster staff also chops the book into short installments—about 15 minutes of reading time—that can be read quickly whenever the consumer has spare time. And finally, much like DailyLit, Rooster users can schedule when their installments arrive and have them delivered in the morning, the afternoon, everyday, three days a week, or whatever they choose.
Rooster also partners with publishers to promote their authors and its list will include such award-winning novelists Julia Glass, Adam Haslett, Chang-Rae Lee and Molly Antopol among others. Plympton/DailyLit is based in San Francisco and merged with DailyLit, an email reading venture launched 2006, in 2013.
Lee also said that Rooster also offers a reading experience specifically designed for the smartphone, a device used more than ever for reading. “We wanted to create a reading experience that was designed for mobile from the ground up. That means we have to build a beautiful reader, find the right types of stories that fit a small screen, and thinking about how it fits reading fits into daily lives given that we now carry a computing device in our pocket.”