I think one of the problems is that there’s no such thing as an Alternative or Experimental Literature scene. Almost all of the books published are rather conservative. Sort of like if Cliff Richards dominated the music world.

The experimental books I have browsed have either been too pretentious to read or too ’emo’. Usually a bit of both. Generally unreadable, unless you want to impress people.

But then any story told wholly in words seems conservative by medium alone. Especially since there’s never any variation from the standard font, although I guess there are many good reasons for that. The only book I’ve read in handwriting rather than print was Badjelly the Witch by Spike Milligna, the well-known typing error. Illustrations in novels, if they existed in adult novels, which they don’t, tend to merely reflect what has been written rather than show something new in themselves. If they did that, you could probably classify them as comic books. A Series Of Unfortunate Events had interesting crinkly pages, but you’d never see that in an adult book.

I guess what I’m trying to say is that I wish adult books were allowed to be more like children’s books and comic books. It’s not like books these days are technologically restricted to adhere to a particular look and style. But then two authors have had their book covers ‘adultified’ (Terry Prachett and J.K. Rowling), and no authors have ever had their books covers ‘juvenilified’ (except perhaps the alternative cover of the latest Jeffrey Archer book), so I guess that particular march of progress is a backwards one.

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