The Future of Reading in Pictures

Right now I see readers existing on a continuum. At one end we have the addict…

  “I read that GRRM novel in two days. You got anything else? Robin Hobb? Joe Abercrombie? Scott Lynch? Brandon Sanderson? Nothing! C’mon, man, I’m dying! What about a World of Warcraft tie-in novel…”

At the other end we have the fetishist…

“… wraparound gold embossed *gasp* slip cover with *pant* waxen end pages and *sniff* mint-tinged book binding glue *squee*…”

Of course both can and do exist in the same person, which is great as long as the overall environment they exist in is healthy. Trouble is that as the distance between poles increases, books cease to be objects we encounter in our day-to-day lives and reading becomes marginalized until it’s either as effortless as eating a tube of Pringles or so fraught with arcana that one expects rites and initiations, along with a full bank account, are required to do it.

Books as addictive substance, or books as art object, support either, but if one side wins it’s likely to be a loss for everyone.

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2 responses to “The Future of Reading in Pictures”

  1. Rick Bowes says :

    Yeah, the guys in “the bends” as we used to call them – doesn’t look like it’s that bad yet. But what the hell is “Tension in the Tradition” – he’s in withdrawal from traditional narrative methods?

    • Justin says :

      Think you’re supposed to read it as “… in the EC tradition”, you know ’cause they’re the publisher. Then again maybe he stumbled upon a nonlinear story and he’s just screaming out for a “good story”.

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