The Orson Story

Pleasure in publishing

At Orson, we believe writers can lead the technology of storytelling. We know tech can deepen the imaginative experience. When actors, musicians, photographers, authors and readers collaborate, the result is life-changing works of art. We call them Orsons.

It all began in August 2010 when co-founder Richard Mason saw an iPad for the first time. His novel, History of a Pleasure Seeker (“the best new work of fiction in many moons” – Washington Post), was scheduled to come out in hardback, and he saw the future of storytelling in touchscreen devices. He knew the inclusion of the music and sights within the story could fuel his readers’ imaginations.

Fast forward to 2016 and under the guidance of fellow co-founder Benjamin Morse, the team at Orson have realised that vision in technicolor. Orsons are a vivid step in the evolution of digital books that respect the fundamental principle in storytelling: the fusion of the author’s imagination with the reader’s own.

Orson’s bespoke approach broadens the dimensions of publishing. Just as film brought performance culture beyond the theatre, the Orson introduces a new medium to literary culture.

The Team

Frequently Asked Questions

What is an Orson?

An Orson is the ultimate digital edition, created by authors and artists and inspired by the belief that tech should deepen the imaginative experience, not distract from it.

When will the Orson app be available?

Orson is currently inviting US and UK iPad and iPhone owners to download and preview its sample titles in its beta version of the free bookshelf app.

What does the app cost?

The Orson app is available for free in the App Store, for iPads and iPhones. Individual titles are purchased within the app using one’s Apple ID.

Why the name Orson?

The founders felt Morse & Mason sounded like a paint company, deleted a few letters, and liked the associations of Orson. They wanted an imaginative product name that preceded tech and was not linked to ebooks.

Is Orson available in languages other than English?

For 2017, Orson is available in English. Please check back as we continue to add support for more regions of the world.

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Orson invites you to preview its US and UK apps.

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