Is The Story Dead?
Whilst many of us are scrolling through the lives of others via social media and revelling in the fact we can experience so much from our phones, without ever lifting a finger (apart from a well-rehearsed "swipe"), I do wonder whether we are losing the ability to connect to life? However, do I worry too much about the time my children spend on social media, reading inane rubbish, following A-List, B-List and C-List celebrities and their busy lives? Perhaps it's me that has the problem?
Like many, I probably do resist change a fair bit, and whilst I have been hunkering down trying to preserve the humble book and even an eReader (if I must), perhaps I have been missing the evolution of reading? I have spent much time looking backwards and voicing this perfect childhood of reading books and reading at all opportunities but there is a part of me that is wondering whether I have failed to notice a slow switch in reading material.
I have been reconsidering my overbearing opinions about traditional forms of reading and how the book is dying (sob!) to try and have an open mind about the future of reading. Storytelling nowadays can be found in many places and in different ways, whether it's by image, text, podcast, or even cereal boxes and these widening mediums is allowing this age-old activity to be accessible to all, in different places, with different abilities and background. Diversity is key in all that we do, surely this evolving world of literature to less traditional forms is just that - a building diversity in storytelling medium?
My children are busy following photos, texts and diaries of socialites, sending messages, laughing, crying and learning and I think about what the "story" is. Long ago you would listen to a reading, or an elder who would be passing on snippets of their life, teaching others about mistakes made, behaviour and opinions, and since the beginning of time, storytelling has been about learning and engaging. Surely, social media is still providing this?
So, hold your horses and before my children think this blog is the open door to a free reign of social media and screen time, no it isn't. I do believe I need to perhaps be a little less vocal over my opinions of screen time, but as with all that we do, moderation should still be applied. The more diverse our material, the more questions we ask and the more we seek to learn - the more enriched our lives become. So pick up a book, an eReader or a phone or tablet, but don't forget about one of the best stories out there, the one that can't be found in any of these mediums. The story of your life, the most important one, the one that really needs to be lived.