The future of the book is oh my god not again yes yes just hold on a minute because the book of the future will stand over your shoulder and cough politely like Jeeves before asking you if you want to hear a chapter or two. The future of the book somehow presumes 100% illiteracy and swerves into paroxysms of anxiety if it dips to 98 or 99. The future of the book will have characters saying lines like, “Jeff Be-who?” The future of the book will see writers who can afford it slowly fill notebooks a la Jung’s Red Book or like a textual version of Jonathan Richman’s “The Laura Palmer Tapes” and only send those finished results and those alone to the exact reader they want to want to write to, which could make them feel peaceful, safe, excited, overjoyed, surprised (if you know their daily routine, you can transform their daily routine), annoyed (see previous parenthesis), or all of these things. Of the latter, there is much more to say.
The future of the book will not be defined by a liberal, prose-based abuse of parataxis. The future of the book will be defined by Maghreb-soaked French translating John Updike’s eyeball on the mundane into a summer blockbuster, because wouldn’t that be something? The future of the book will see books pass from one language to the other with the swift, natural flow of a spring cloudburst passing from one end of the city to the other. The future of the book will see self-published, middle-aged individuals living in Maine writing about middle-aged individuals living in Maine. The future of the book will see a small-industry pop up analyzing in multi-volume detail the “Law and Order” theme, which is only fine, fair, and just. The future of the book will fix Brazil’s purportedly stagnant literary festivals.
The future of the book is a book, end of story and/or to be continued.