Tuesday, September 06, 2011

Serials: Reborn Yet

Have serials made a come back?  That's the giga-zillion question today.  Now for all you out there that do not read, let me explain.  A serial is book (a novel if you will) that is released in regularly scheduled parts, usually once a week, or as often as once a day.  Like a TV series, the book is presented as one part of the whole, and you have to read each part as it comes, or wait for the novel version.

At one time many, many books (or works of literature) were published this way (Charles Dickens is known for his serial publications).  Some were then repackaged into a collection known as a novel, but many were not until much later.  It is not that a full length work such as a novel is bad, or that it is something really new, but the serial seems to had faded, but maybe not.

The Return of the Serial
The serial is making a comeback on the world wide web.  I see blogs that act very much like serials, and some are specifically designed to be very much like a serial.  I think the difference here is that most of them are in the draft.  We are not yet seeing an organized finished product like was published in the Saturday Evening Post, or the New Yorker, but rough drafts being published in serial form because they are being written on the blog.

So is a blog a serial?  Not all of them, and certainly very few are planned that way.  So I would say no, the serial is a blog, and the blog is not a serial.  There are glimmers of the serial within many blogs, and a few blogs act a lot like a serial, but nothing has the scheduled release and finish that the serials had.

So, no serials are not back, yet, but they may be making a come back soon.
9/6/11 JD

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