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Hughes: "The Indies are therefore indispensable to a healthy publishing world."

02 Mar 2011 in international | questo post è lungo 651 parole

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Rhys HughesRhys Hughes «Influenced by Borges, Calvino and Stanislaw Lem, Hughes's fiction is both intellectual and hilarious with plenty of jokes, puns and satirical side-swipes to keep the reader constantly amused» [Fantastifiction] The Astral Disruptor |** Twisthorn Bellow | Better The Devil Check out The Phantom Festival** (published today!)****

I’m a convert to the concept, but I don’t actually own a Kindle or any other ebook reader. I own very little in the way of practical technology. I don’t have a cell phone or a television. I like to say that I’m more interested in the philosophy of the future than the trappings that will make the future work, but the truth is that I’m simply behind the times when it comes to gadgets. I feel slightly adrift in the digital world. I fondly remember the days when I could scan the airwaves with a short wave radio, carefully adjusting the variable capacitor to pick up obscure transmissions from places that no longer exist, such as Río de Oro, Transjordan, the Duchy of Savoy and Atlantis. Only joking about Atlantis! They didn’t have radio transmitters back then, only huge semaphore towers on crags... But as for ebooks, yes they really are the future of publishing...

I worry about how robots are going to fit into our civilisation. As they get more and more advanced, and perhaps develop minds and souls of their own, robots will be able to suffer just as much as any organic lifeform. I note that robots are already being forced to run marathons for our amusement. The human race plans to use robots as slaves, but this will be just another chapter in the neverending book of historical oppression. I really hope we don’t exploit robots. What’s the point of creating something just to make it do work? Work isn’t necessarily moral. That’s one of the big lies of our times.

Independent publishers are issuing great works by fine new writers who might never have a chance with the big publishing houses. The Indies are therefore indispensable to a healthy publishing world. Most of my books have been issued by independent publishers. Having said that, most of my favourite writers are published by major houses. But the Indies are essential and long may they thrive! But if they ever use robots as editors and proofreaders I hope that the working conditions will be reasonable for them.

I’m not really qualified to say anything about prices. If all the money I have ever spent on books during my lifetime was piled up into one room I think it would be enough to buy a luxury yacht or a light aircraft... For anyone who lives in Britain right now, however, the word “prices” is generally linked to the outrageous cost of food. Food prices here have gone up enormously in the past few years. We currently have idiots in charge of the government. I look forward to our first robot prime minister and/or monarch, who will surely be more humane than the human options we have been lumbered with!

Innovation makes the world go round. As well as gravity, inertia and the hypothetical impact of Theia, which apparently was another planet that collided with our own world about 4.6 billion years ago. Anything alive on the Earth at that time would have been destroyed instantly. Luckily this happened before life originated, and long before robots were invented, to the best of our knowledge. I’m a big fan of innovation. I wonder who invented innovation? He must have been very innovative even before he invented it, but that means... Paradox! My favourite thing, even more so than innovation!

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