Golden Gate Area - Free State, South Africa.


During a most enjoyable excursion to the stunning Golden Gate section of the Free State over the weekend, one aspect filled me with depression.  I took the opportunity to try and interest the owners of some local bookstores in stocking my novels, and the reaction was an instant and flat negative.   The blunt opinion was that they have too many words and not enough pictures for modern youth. 

 In vain I mentioned books like Harry Potter.   The reaction was that in such cases extraordinary luck had been followed by massive publicity, but that with current reading trends it was a phenomenon only likely to recur in the most scattered and limited instances.  One bookseller mentioned an excellent children’s novel written by a local author – in five years, exactly two copies had been sold.

 Daughter bought a book there for little granddaughter.  She rather regretted it when, later, she discovered it contained gems like, ‘This is an dog’.  It was probably, like so many today, mass-produced in China.

 Is it true, though?  Are Potter and perhaps Snickett the only books youngsters are likely to read these days before relapsing back into a fixation with TV, computer games, and cellphones?  Should writers give up producing any sort of length or quality – or, better still, just give up full stop?


© July 2010 Colonialist (WordPress)

About colonialist

Active septic geranium who plays with words writing fantasy novels and professionally editing, with notes writing classical music, and with riding a mountain bike, horses and dinghies. Recently Indie Publishing has been added to this list.
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  1. Catwoman says:

    What an absolutely stunning picture 🙂


  2. cindy says:

    Never give up. I’ve just had a string of birthday parties for 12 year olds, both boys and girls, and ALL OF THEM had the Twighlight books on their wishlists. You’ll be encouraged to know that, when asked what they wanted, most suggested a voucher from Exclusive Books.


  3. adeeyoyo says:

    Stunning photo, Col! Unfortunately I haven’t been to that part of the ‘Berg.

    Re the book issue: Like many other ‘essentials’ falling by the wayside, it is up to parents and schools to encourage reading.


    • colonialist says:

      Definitely a part to see if you get the chance!

      So few parents and schools seem to offer that encouragement, these days. Already, at only just over 2, the granddaughter is hooked on books.


  4. 68ghia says:

    You should not give up Col!
    I think it’s the adults that buys the books and read them. Not the kids so much.
    I do think things are moving away from books and more in the electronic side of things which is very sad!
    Nothing quite like buying a brand new book, smelling the paper and ink, parking off in your fav chair for a good time spent in the company of far off places and people…


  5. Tokeloshe says:

    Great photo!

    We saw the area years ago in Autumn, it is beautiful.

    It is great pity about the stores and some of today’s readers.
    I think writers should not give up on their readers.


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