About Me

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Lake Charles, Louisiana, United States
Hello, and welcome to my blog! I like to write about children's literature, fairy tales, feminism, and pop culture in general. I've recently earned my Ph.D. in children's literature at the University of Louisiana at Lafayette. I also review children's and young adult books for Kirkus and teach English at Sowela Technical Community College. Oh, and I like cats! [Banner image artwork by Yuki Midorikawa]

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Books v. eBooks ... and the winner is?

An intriguing post from Maria Tartar's blog got me thinking.

It’s an interesting debate—which are better, books or online readers? Traditionalists are going to fight vehemently for the book; people already talk depressingly about the death of the book. Those who consider themselves more in tune with the times boast about how often and easily they use their kindles, laptops, iPhones and iPads, but sometimes guiltily admit that they still enjoy reading a good, solid book.

I wonder how this might be turned toward fanfiction and fan culture.

This is a wholly online culture. A great many (impossible to guess how many) members of these various online communities are children or young adults. I have sat in front of my laptop, enjoying a nice long fic or series of fics, all likely written by someone half my age, with a hot cup of tea and a cat in my lap for hours. It’s no more or less comfortable than sitting in my comfy white chair in the living room with an actual book (likely written for someone half my age) in my hands. Regardless, at some point I have to get up and stretch my legs, take a bathroom break, or what have you. But the story always brings me back, regardless of the medium.

That being said, I’ve had people tell me that they actually print out stories I have posted online, so that they can read them at work, at school, in bed, wherever.

Maybe this is our own 21st century Battle of the Books?

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