Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Has the Pop Era in Literature Already Begun?

At work yesterday one of my colleagues-- who doesn't know I write-- began telling me about this great book she'd read on her Kindle. It was about cloned Presidents, corrupt politicians, and had an amazing over-the-top plot. It sounded crazy and marvelous. She said it was so involving, like nothing she'd ever read, she couldn't put it down.

What was this imaginative work, I wondered? Something by Ben Marcus or David Foster Wallace?

No. The author was J.A. Konrath, who's one of the leading ebook writers, by all accounts selling enormous amounts.

I began thinking about the importance of my co-worker's unsolicited comment. Could 2012 become a dividing-line year in the world of American literature? I'm thinking of 1956 and 1964 in the realm of popular music-- years when styles and modes turned on their head. What had been "in" one day became instantly obsolete the next.

In the context of dynamite pop writers like Konrath, the snobby opinions of the once all-powerful literary establishment look quaint and stale.

The next year or two could be enormously exciting. Stay tuned to this blog. I intend to cover the changes as thoroughly as possible.

1 comment:

  1. eBooks change the format, distro and money (and they totally save on paper and oil). But do they affect the PR? Where do pop-readers get their tips from? Word of mouth, maybe. Amazon reviews? It's possible that the old power-chain will be destroyed, but it seems likely that it'll morph its way into the new structure and retake its position as gatekeeper.