The Future of the Novel

May 13, 2013

Listen to this quote: "I have just ... paid a depressing visit to an electronic computer which can write sonnets if fed with the right material... I have a feeling that by Christmas it will have written its first novel, and possibly by next Christmas novel sets will be on sale at Woolworths and you will all be able to buy them, and write your own." That was the writer Lawrence Durrell issuing a gloomy forecast, 50 years ago.

For about 45 of those years, novels didn't change all that much, but, of late, the Digital Revolution seems to be catching up to the novel. With ebooks and self publishing becoming more the rule, less the exception.  What seemed like an endangered form five decades ago seems even more imperiled, and paradoxically energized, today.

Coming up, four novelists tell us their hopes and fears.

Please leave your comments below, email us at Colin@wnpr.org or tweet us @wnprcolin.

Super special thanks to intern Jules Lefebvre for co-producing this show!!