Tuesday, August 27, 2013

What The French?! or Why I haven't been posting much

This is not about photography, but it explains why I've been doing fewer posts this year. When Apple announced the iAuthor program for developing iBooks for iPad (that's a lot of "i"s) and launched the textbook section of the iBookstore back in January, I decided to write a French grammar review textbook that would cover everything from your first course in High School through at least four semesters of college French—but with attitude you don't get from the typical textbook. 

I've written for textbooks before (when I was desperate for the money) and I've written a distance-learning French literature course that got a national award, but I pretty much hate the textbook industry. My oldest son starts his freshman year of college next week and most of his textbooks cost more than a gorgeous multi-volume Steidl set of photobooks, which makes absolutely no sense. 

So I teamed up with Andrew Livingston (a grad student in linguistics and author of the daily web comic CrustaceanSingles.com) and we have spent the past 8 months writing What The French?! It just went on sale on the iBookstore today (for only $9.99).

I'm kind of annoyed that Apple listed it under "language reference" (where it will be buried amid tons of books)  instead of "textbook" (where it would have been one of two French textbooks), but maybe our un-textbook-like approach contributed to that problem. Anyway, we're not trying to get schools to adopt us as their textbook; we want the students to adopt us as the perfect way to undermine the annoying $200 textbook that they are forced to use. You can buy the book on iTunes (for iPad only right now) or learn more at our site, whatthefrench.com.

So that's what I've been up to. If you have any friends who are taking (or want to brush up on) French, spread the word. I'm obviously biased, but I think it pretty great. I promise to have a photo-related post soon. 


Castles Crowns and Cottages said...

Salut Marc!

J'ai vu que vous êtes venu voir mon billet! Alors, vous êtes prof de français?

Je suis en train de preparer un autre billet. Je vous remercie de me laisser des commentaires! Anita

marc said...

Oui, je suis prof de français (de littérature française, surtout le 18e siècle), mais j'adore la photo depuis l'âge de 7 ans et de temps en temps je donne des cours de civilisation française à travers la photographie. Mon projet "What The French?!" c'est tout récent. Je voulais écrire un iBook qui serait une révision de grammaire sans la prétension (ni le prix) des textes de grammaire typiques. Mon ancien assistant (et co-auteur/dessinateur) partageait mes opinions, alors on a décidé de commencer une série de livres sur le français (notre prochain projet: vocabulaire et conversation). C'est beaucoup plus amusant que les articles académiques que je dois écrire en tant que prof.