Flash Me Please

4 Apr

I just ran across this over at Bartleby Snopes.  This is one of the more interesting ideas I’ve seen for new directions in publishing literature.

We all know that literary publishing is running into a problem.  There are too many publications, and not enough readers or time for those readers.  The result is inevitable fragmentation.  I am not bemoaning the commercial consequences of this–I’m concerned about the artistic ones.  Literature, as an art form, has a unique impact on readers’ views of the world in a way that the (static) visual arts do not.  Fragmentation threatens to damage literature’s ability to have that impact.

The flash novel is interesting to me because it is an effort to solve the problem.  People have been saying the novel is dead for a century.  It may not be dead, but it is sick.  To the extent that the flash novel can be distinguished from the novella, it may be an interesting adaptation to the conditions of the literary markets of the 21st century.

I am very intrigued by this.


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