Pay as You Read

Take a peek at *bylines*, Jon Franklin’s (and associates) ambitious pay-as-you-read “gallery of fine writing.”

Franklin, a Pulitzer Prize-winning exponent of literary journalism, believes that readers will pay as much for a good feature story as they do for a cup of coffee. Actually, several of the dozen-plus works on the site are cheaper than a grande at Starbucks, including Michael Lenehan’s 1982 AtlanticMonthly feature about the making of a Steinway (just 79 cents). The Mark, Jacques Leslie’s stirring book about his days as a Vietnam war correspondent, is a steal at $2.50, especially seeing as Amazon wants $15.40 plus shipping for the hardcover.

Chatterbox can’t decide if it is more exciting that somebody has finally stopped talking about micropricing journalism and literature on the web and finally started to do it, or that these great works–many of which are out of print, like Franklin’s Shocktrauma–are available once again.

Visit the site, and don’t forget to bring your MasterCard or Visa. Someday you’ll buy all your favorite books and periodicals this way.