There is much to discuss on the future of the book. Arguments abound that e-books have killed off the book and with the decline in funding for libraries and the startling figures that we have lost over 400 independent bookshops in the last 10 years, what future does the hard copy book have?
Personally, I think the book is now more vital than ever. I am a great support of digital technologies but I know the power a real book has to catch an imagination. A book is a secretive, private thing, it is a lover, a best friend, it is yours and for awhile all that goes on in that book fills your world. When you have finished it you want to scream from the rooftops if it is great, you want to yell at people if you catch them reading it if it is bad. A number of writers come to mind but for legal reasons we won’t go into lists of bad writers and poets. It is a subjective argument and largely pointless beyond making ourselves feel superior for some awful and dark reasons. That is why it is great when one dying technology gets a new lease of life from another technology that people are shouting is also dead. The old red phone box has got a new lease of life as a library, the trend is spreading and if you are in any of these areas, lost and looking for a phone you will be up shit creek if you enter any of these boxes. No phone, just books in the smallest community run libraries in the UK:
St Margaret South Elmham, Suffolk
Marton cum Grafton, Yorkshire
Little Shelford, Cambridgeshire
West and East Horrington, Somerset