‘Nobody reads anymore!’ Really?

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It’s a common point of conversation in bookworm circles, ‘Nobody reads anymore!’ Similar threads can be picked up from the floors of bookstores, the foyers of creative writing seminars and workshops… I think we need to be more specific. This hyperbole is doing nobody any favours.

If I were to take this phrase literally, ‘Nobody reads anymore!’ Well Charlie, I would call you a flat out liar with ya butt in the air in ya head in the sand. Because people do still read –  hell – maybe more than ever! People these days fill the small gaps of their lives with words. When they’re waiting inline, at the doctor’s office, at the servo, on the loo and even when their having coffee with a friend. People are reading their FaceBook feeds, tweets, Instagram posts, blog posts, reviews and articles, maybe even some news!

I would say that we are reading more than ever. People who don’t even like reading are now forced (heh-heh-heh) to read more thanks to our nifty, portable, mini-computers.

Maybe it would be more accurate to say that no one reads novels anymore? But that too feels a bit lofty. Obviously there’s enough statistical data to support this, and I’m sure I could research it and rehash here but a) I don’t want to research it and b) I’m sure you don’t want to read about it.

What I do know is that the people in my life who love books, love books.

Passionately.

Intensely.

Desperately.

Their eyes dance when they start talking about their latest read, there’s always a paperback in their bag and with twenty (+) unread books on the shelf at home, they still emerge from their local with fresh pressed purchases pinned to their chest.

Perhaps our gang is shrinking, but I tell ya, the loyalty is fierce.

Where there are readers, there are writers. One invariably leads to the other. My masters course, the first for the university, anticipated ten students. Twenty-two hopeful Poe’s made the grade. Brandon Sanderson (Sci-fi/fantasy writer) teacher’s creative writing at BYU to a packed class every year, many students who want to participate in his course are turned away because, well, there’s only so many seats. The upswing of that however, is someone videoed all the lectures and you can find them here. You’re welcome.

I might be pulling my rope a little tight here but stick with me. Have you noticed all the book that have been turned into movies lately? Someone out there in Hollywood is still reading, and he’s making a neat mint off it too.

I know it’s a bit of a bleak wasteland out there. Publishing houses are shrinking. Amazon. Self-publishing. Declining rates. Gasp! There is a wee spark though and it is this, books aren’t going away. Maybe things will change but what doesn’t?

Read on bookworms, and I’ll see you down at the local, where we can split a chai and talk about ‘kids these days.’

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