Local News

Seattle man aims to make reading as exciting as gaming

SEATTLE —  What if we could get kids to be just as excited about reading as they are about video games?

A Seattle man thinks he’s found a way, and it’s as simple as downloading and app.

The new e-book is called Jackson’s Choice, and right from the beginning, it draws you in. The story revolves around a young journalist in Greece who is fighting for his life; in this e-book, the reader gets to throw the punches.

“Now that these devices are in our lives, how can we use that to make pure fiction some alive,” Joe Booth said.

Booth has been working in video games for most of his career. He created this new interactive e-book concept and is hoping to bring the addictive excitement of gaming to young readers.The story jumps off the page.

A shaky screen makes you feel what Jackson feels, as he wakes up from being unconscious. The more you read, the more points and perks you earn.

“If you think about the journey a child goes through and the confidence they need to learn how to read, I think it`s good to have as many options as they can,” Booth said.

The kind of options he could have used as a kid.

“I was very smart at some things and not so much at other things, it was confusing,” Booth said.

Booth is dyslexic. School was tough, but video games came easy. He grew up to work on games like The Need for Speed, FIFA Soccer, and other popular titles , all without being able to read well.

Then, a friend gave him a copy of John Irving novel “A Prayer for Owen Meany,” in which a main character, who is dyslexic, uses various techniques to teach himself to read.

“I tried that and it was like a light bulb went off and that really changed it,” Booth said.

Booth’s own son Jackson, who this first e-book is named after, had trouble reading too.

“I think our core is a person who loves fiction and the idea of fiction and part of that is people who, it`s been out of their grasp and we help them get there,” says Booth.

If you want to check out the app, it’s called Crowded Fiction.  You can find it here in the iTunes App Store.

Or here is the website and Facebook page.

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