William Gibson on Reading

The recently released Zero History by William Gibson concludes the "informal trilogy begun by Pattern Recognition and features Hollis Henry and Milgrim from Spook Country, the middle book, as the protagonists."*

I finished Spook Country last week, it was OK, but Pattern Recognition is a masterpiece. I'm interested in how Zero History will taste. I'll get it from the library soon.

In response to a question from the audience at the first public reading from Zero History, William Gibson had this to say about reading:

Q: Tomorrow is the first day of high school around here, and I’ll be teaching 14-and 15-year olds language arts. I was just wondering [what] you would say to young people about the importance of reading…

A: Oh, dear. [Audience laughter.] Well, it’s difficult. That’s a good question, a tough question. It’s … such a huge thing for me, that it’s really a stretch for me to imagine its opposite. And that makes it difficult for me.

Think kids. These black marks on this white paper? It’ll make you have really intense CG-like experiences [audience laughter] in your head. But only when you’ve learned to interpret them within an extremely rigid and complicated [set of] rules. And you’ll then have to be introduced into the cultural nature of enjoying this ancient but vivid platform which I’m hoping you will take up and cherish. [Audience laughter & applause.]

(Q & A Lifted from www.wiredpen.com)

No comments: