A Farewell to Words?

by Mary Frances Erler

I have suspected for a long time that blogs are going the way of landline phones, snail-mail, and even email.  The popular media are now based largely on pictures.  (After all, one picture is worth a thousand words.) And soundbytes.  Instagram, Snapchat, and others are beginning to leave even Facebook in the dust.

It’s ironic to me that one of the first books I wrote, Peaks at the Edge of the World: Finding the Light, begun in the early 1970s but not published until the Twenty-first Century, was a sci-fi story based a thousand years in the future, when written words had become obsolete.  Books, representing “Old Ways” were banned.  Even learning to read the written word was forbidden.  I admit the seed of my idea was inspired by Ray Bradbury’s classic Fahrenheit 451.

So I find myself, as the coordinator of Montana Women Writers blogposts for the past year and a half, offering up our final blog.  Our farewell to words, at least in this medium.  Though as authors who work almost with daily with words, we hope that this is not a total farewell.

In my first book, there were still a hidden minority who kept illegal books, and shared them with their children as well as they could.  I have a feeling some of us will become one of those “reading renegades.” 

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