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Writers and wreaders

23 April 2007

'It would be hard these days to create a new model of copyright based on who is cool and uncool, but it is time to make a distinction between writing which is produced with the intention of being literature, and what I call 'wreading', words produced primarily as personal documentation, an activity which has mushroomed online.

What do I mean by a Wreader? Someone who leaves reviews on Amazon, writes a blog about the books and films they enjoy (which may include extracts and samples of these), writes stories and poems as a form of self-expression. Their website is their diary, notebook and commonplace book.

If wreader turns writer, it means they are choosing to present a crafted work of art to the world, and await the world's verdict on its quality. Or else their work has caught the eye of passing browsers - like the millions who can latch onto a blog or YouTube miming teen, making its creator an accidental and probably very temporary star. In this way Wreaders can define what they want to see in print and writers can build a readership in advance of a book's actual publication.'

Chris Meade, Director of Booktrust in his Bookfutures blog