Archive for February 25th, 2010

When is a blog a book?

25 February 2010

By Juliana Adelman

Unsurprisingly the proliferation in blogs has lead to many of them morphing into paperback form.  So far we have had Stuff White People Like, Animal Review, and Postcards from Yo Momma among many.   The last is probably most obviously amenable to the process of ‘bookization’ being a kind of record of correspondence, however flippant the title.  Mutation between literary forms is of course nothing new.  In the 19th C lectures moved into the printed sphere often first as newspaper reports, then possibly became the basis for a journal article, then the article was cut and pasted into lots of cheaper journals, and then sometimes the speaker might have published a book or pamphlet based on the lecture.  Then the same essay might have appeared in a collected works after the author’s death.  And on it went.  Suddenly a few thousands words are available in a myriad of formats to different audiences.  Anyway, I was thinking of this when I was reading Mary Beard’s It’s a don’s life which is a book version of her blog.  I wondered what publishers expect the audience for a book-of-blog to be: readers of the blog? or people who need technology brought to them in paper form?  I suppose I answered my own question by buying the book as both a reader of the blog and also a person who likes things on paper. Read more