Story on Morning Edition on NPR
Ten years ago, few imagined that by decade’s end, people would be reading novels on cell phones. A lot has changed in the book world.
“Over the last couple of years, I’ve really noticed if I sit down with a book, after a few paragraphs, I’ll say, ‘You know, where’s the links?
Where’s the e-mail? Where’s all the stuff going on?’ ” says writer Nicholas Carr. “And it’s kind of sad.”
Carr says he’s thought of himself as a serious reader all his life, but in an article in The Atlantic, he argued that the Internet is training us to read in a distracted and disjointed way. But does that mean writers will have to change the way they write to capture the attention of an audience accustomed to this new way of reading? Carr thinks the answer is yes, and he looks to the past to make his point.