Bob recently gave a presentation at The Grolier Club titled, “Good News! The Book is Dead.” While this title sounds dreary, his speech presented a very positive outlook on the future of books. With this topic being on our minds here at Oak Knoll, we began sharing our thoughts of how we think books will change in the future. Read to see what Cara, an Oak Knoll intern from the University of Delaware thinks about the future of the book.
Click. Delete. The book is dead. One key stroke is all it takes to erase an entire industry and culture. Or is it? Can the book ever truly be stripped from our hands and replaced with fluorescent screens? Are we forever finished flipping the page and instead content with scrolling down? As a 21 year old student, a girl caught between my childhood of renting dusty library books and my present life of MP3 players and GPS cell phones, I don’t think we are quite ready to close that chapter.
I’ve heard the stories, read the articles, and watched the news. I know all about what people are saying. However, I’ve also talked to students, the main advertising market for those oh-so-fabulous e-books, portable Kindles, and iPads. Although every kid likes a new toy, they do grow tired of its plastic exterior and over-processed quality. They eventually always return to their old favorite friend, that tattered stuffed animal or beaten-up doll. So it is with e-books and actual books. Yes, we are fascinated with these new gadgets, but I know that we will return to what is familiar and friendly.
This does not mean that things aren’t changing, because they are. Publishers will have to discover new ways to keep current by marketing themselves with the ever-moving electronic age. However, I know that there are still people out there, myself included, that will always prefer the hard copy to the digital page.
Two new students from the University of Delaware are interning at Oak Knoll. Here are their first blog entries. Hope you enjoy getting to know them!
I grew up in a world of books. I’ve ridden a raft with Huck and Finn, pined after Mr. Darcy with Elizabeth Bennet, conquered Lord Voldemort with Harry Potter, and stood on a cliff with Holden Caulfield. My life has been filled with characters, both fictional and non-fictional, and as I enter my spring semester of my junior year, I have met even more at Oak Knoll Books & Press.
As both an English and Communications major at the University of Delaware, I have searched for a career experience that could give me more insight into the stories and books that I have grown to cherish. Even though it has only been a few days since I have started my internship, Oak Knoll has already opened my eyes to what it really takes to put a book together. From new and scary words like “frontispiece” and “colophon,” to more familiar ones such as “binding” and “title page,” my publishing vocabulary and expertise has grown immensely. I hope to learn even more about the structure and marketing of books as the semester goes on, and I know the people at Oak Knoll will fulfill their promise.
Just like in any other story I have read since childhood, I have embarked on a journey with the characters at Oak Knoll. I am looking forward to the beginning chapters of getting to know everyone, the rising action of attempting a difficult task, the climax of having accomplished something important, and the ultimate final chapter when I will leave Oak Knoll with a newfound knowledge and appreciation for the book itself, and not just the story it holds. Thank you to all my fellow characters at Oak Knoll Books & Press! I know this will be an exciting adventure.
And so begins another new chapter…
A new leaf has turned at Oak Knoll, and as 50% of the fresh meat interning here this semester, it’s been a blast getting to know the historic Opera House and its hardworking inhabitants.
What I find most valuable about my time here is that even as a newbie intern, I’ve already had the opportunity to take part in several key parts of the publishing process: write, read, revise, design, discuss, distribute. I’m about 180 pages into editing my first manuscript and have helped catalogue books whose values most likely exceed my own. Cheers.
As a graduating senior, an internship with Oak Knoll couldn’t come at a better time. Every day, I am surrounded by relics of a time gone by as I walk through the endless shelves of books, my footsteps echoing much as they would in a museum.
Oak Knoll is a company whose employees provide great company as I get my first glimpse at life as a publisher. Here’s to a great first month and many more!