Synopses & Reviews
An anthology of original essays from our most intriguing young writers, Bookmark Now
boldly addresses the significance of the production of literature in the twenty-first century. Or simply, "How do we talk about writing and reading in an age where they both seem almost quaint?"
The book features authors in their twenties and thirties those raised when TV, video games, and then the Internet supplanted books as dominant cultural mediums and their intent is to examine: (1) how this generation came to writing as a calling, (2) what they see as literature's relevance when media consumption and competition have reached unprecedented levels, and (3) how writing and reading fit in with the rest of our rapid, multitasking world.
The result offers a voyeuristic peek into the private, creative lives of today's writers and sheds light on what their work means at a time when the book business is changing, yet almost paradoxically a time when storytelling as a means of both self-realization and community building (be it via e-mail, weblogs, or This American Life) seems more relevant than ever before.
Edited by Kevin Smokler, a Bay Area entrepreneur who has devoted himself to fostering literary culture and cultivating fresh talent, Bookmark Now is a collection that both captures the state of the art and provides inspiration to aspiring writers at all levels.
"If you're a writer, Bookmark is pure inspirational power juice. If you're a reader (we know you're out there), it provides lots of heartening evidence that literature isn't dead, and that novelists can be just as entertaining as Dave Chappelle." Marc Weingarten, Los Angeles Times
"...since I've never been on time for any cultural trend in my life, I'd rather be at the party now, with great potential just ahead, than in some imagined past where a nation read together, authors walked as gods on earth and publishers went home fat and happy every afternoon." -from the Introduction
The sky is NOT caving in on American letters. Far from it. The immensely talented writers in this collection all came of age professionally in the last decade and all chose reading and writing over another more lucrative and decidedly flashier pursuits. They became producers and consumers of the written word at the most media-saturated time in history, a time when books face greater cultural competition than ever before. Why? How did they come to writing as a calling? What's the relevance of literature when the very term seems quaint? Bookmark Now answers these questions and many more you probably never thought to ask. Like: What to do when your rabid fans start writing fiction about you? Why don't you have to choose between John Updike and Grand Theft Auto? And, Can you really get paid for it?
The end result is not only a voyeuristic peek into the creative lives of today's writers, but a timely glimpse into a changing book business. Storytelling, it will become clear as a means of self-realization, community building, or simply putting one's point across is NOW more relevant than ever before.
A few big names in fiction, a handful of below-the-radar faves, and a lot of writers to watch discuss why books? why now?” in this collective credo about the future of literature
About the Author
Kevin Smokler's writing has appeared in the San Francisco Chronicle, The Believer, ReadyMade, and on National Public Radio. He lives in San Francisco, California.