First, how have reading and books changed since you were a child, for you specifically?
Books for me have not changed hugely but still have changed. I believe that the stigma of being a nerd because you read, choosing reading material without shame and more types of writing styles are available.
I remember being young and my peers relating reading to being a nerd. It was not cool or the thing to do. I enjoyed reading and it took me away from the everyday drama. I had a teacher that read “The Boxcar Children”. This story and the way she read hooked me onto reading. I wanted to find more stories that made me want to keep reading to find out the ending. A stigma was also attached to what type of books you read so sometimes I found myself hiding what I read.
Reading books that were scary, paranormal or murder made some people make remarks about me possibly being in a cult or not Christian like. I did not share book recommendations or what I was currently reading with anyone unless they read similar books. I found out that my books taste also rolled over into my movie choices. As the years have passed I have found that more genres have expanded my reading choices.
Paranormal, urban fiction and young adult that reads like adult fiction have expanded my reading choices. I do not remember these being genres available as I was growing up. I enjoy the fact that I can read a young adult book and it not be too simple and directed toward juvenile readers. They also focus on things that I can relate too when I went through my high school years. Several of the young adult books have been rolled over to film. This brings my choices of reading into my movie styles.
Second, talk a little about what you see in the future for reading, books, or publishing - say 20 years from now.
Where do I see the future for reading, books or publishing years from now? I see reading being more for pleasure, books still in print but more in eBook format, and publishing fighting with libraries over eBooks.
With the ease of access to books in eBook, online, and downloadable formats, people will be able to read wherever they are. Because of this reading will be more of a pleasure for people. They will not have go into a book store or library to find what they are looking for. It will be immediate satisfaction.
Books written just in eBook format will grow in the next 20 years. The reason for this is the ability to get published is easier, cost of production is less and the publishers have control of lending facilities such as libraries. As it stands now, some publishers have made it difficult for libraries to lend eBooks with limitations. These limitations include how many times it can be borrowed and the cost is the same as print material.
The battle between publishers and libraries will continue to grow. The dollar is mighty for the profit world and limited in the library world. Libraries have tried to keep up with the needs and wants of patrons while dealing with budget restrictions. These restrictions are also the reason for less materials being purchased. In order to use tax dollars wisely libraries need to purchase wisely. Publishers can make this difficult.