Saturday, December 13, 2008

Books Endure

John Updike, who I met at the Kent State Writers' Conference some years ago, has written:

"By and large, times move with merciful slowness in the old-fashioned world of writing. The 88-year-old Doris Lessing won the Nobel Prize in Literature, Elmore Leonard and P.D. James continue, into their 80s, to produce bestselling thrillers. Although books circulate ever more swiftly through the bookstores and back to the publisher again, the rhythms of readers are leisurely. They spread recommendations by word of mouth and 'get around' to titles and authors years after making a mental note of them. A movie has a few weeks to find its audience, and television shows flit by in an hour, but books physically endure, in public and private libraries, for generations."

From "The Writer in Winter" by John Updike, published in AARP, Nov.-Dec. 2008, p. 42.

No comments: