Inspiration is the key!
We’ve all been fascinated by novels which have been written in the past centuries. Think of Charles Dickens, or the Bronte sisters, up to fairly recent writers such as Virginia Woolf or George Orwell. We now know how Literature has evolved in the last few centuries and what movements have gained popularity and led Literature in its evolution. What now? As recently written on this blog, what one might notice after browsing today’s best selling books, is that both fantasy and fiction share an equal amount of success: JK Rowling’s Harry Potter’s series presents us a world of wizardry and magical creatures in the same way JRR Tolkien and CS Lewis used to create their own worlds. Fiction based on everyday drama, relationships and the human condition also investigate on the human behaviour and relationships between people as much as Modernist writers used to.
Are we then living in the echoes of past Literary movements? Seems like it.
I am aware that there are ground breaking novels out there, but somehow the ones who get most popularity seem to belong to genres we’re already too familiar with. The question is: are we ever going to establish a brand new genre of its own for our future? Have we reached saturation point on this or is there something new to unveil? One thing that cannot be denied is how society is strongly tied to literature, so that as society changes so should literature and its genres. It’s not really happening, and I cannot help but think marketing has a big role in this. Could it be that people buy what is being presented to them as the “best selling novel you’ve got to have” rather than buy what inspires them the most? I believe the marketing machine has stolen lots of spontaneity to this process. Would our beloved writers from the past find fortune in today’s world?
My take on this is that there is a subculture of genres that has yet to be unveiled to the world. Luckily, the internet is now changing the whole landscape of literature again, perhaps. And the marketing machine is still on, but the internet gives everyone a chance to promote their own work, be their own publishing company. My bet is technology will be part of tomorrow’s literary genres, meaning that as technology increases its presence in our lives, it will soon be found in the plot of our books too.