I love it when the blogosphere introduces me to new people. That happened recently and my new friend's name is Jean Gralley. Jean's bio says that she "writes and illustrates picture books and believes their future is in motion." I have to admit that I don't spend much time thinking about children's books when I wonder about the future of publishing but it's great to know that people like Jean do.
Jean is working on an initiative she calls Books Unbound. If you'd like to know what Books Unbound is all about, be sure to take a couple of minutes and watch this video. You won't be disappointed. She also wrote an article about her vision called Liftoff: When Books Leave the Page.
When I watched her video and read her article I immediately wondered how much flak she's taking on all this. After all, we want to encourage kids to read, not spend even more time in front of yet another electronic device, right? She mentioned that she does indeed hear her share of grumbles and that "a librarian who heard me speak once blogged that she liked my books well enough to buy multiple copies for her library but Books Unbound made her want to rip them all up!"
My opinion is that I'd rather have a child reading, period, and I don't care whether it's content in print or on screen. If there are ways people like Jean can integrate that content with other forms of entertainment, great, especially if it results in more kids reading. If you agree or if you've got feedback for Jean, please be sure to visit her website and hook up with her as well.
I agree with you! I'd be happy with a child reading. Whether it's on a computer (or other electronic device) or a book. Of course, I'll always push the books 'cause I love them so darn much! :-)
Integrating new technology with literature is a great way to get kids to read (as you pointed out). I'm glad someone out there is pushing this concept further!
Posted by: Brad V. | December 31, 2007 at 04:41 PM
Thanks for introducing Jean Gralley and her fantastic website! I enjoyed reading her article in Horn Book (Lift-Off: "When Books Leave the Page"). Speaking of "hornbooks" and digital media, it occurs to me (and I'm sure I'm late to the party on this one) that digital books are the modern version of hornbooks: once upon a time, children learned their ABCs from hornbooks which, "...were not real books...but only small wooden tablets, with the carefully printed letters covered by a thin piece of horn to protect them from the soiled fingers of the children." (from: Sunbonnet Babies ABC Book: A Modern Hornbook, by Eulalie Osgood Grover, Rand McNally & Co, 1929.)
Posted by: Beth Aguiar | January 02, 2008 at 10:18 AM