Neil Gaiman, bestselling author, tweeted today encouraging people to read a speech he gave that was recently re-printed in The Guardian. He tweeted that our future relies on “libraries, reading and daydreaming.”
Gaiman is famous for many things, his many novels including “The Graveyard Book,” “American Gods,” and most recently “The Ocean at the End of the Lane.” He also writes for Doctor Who, has written many graphic novels, written screenplays, and is now married to the musician Amanda Palmer.
In his speech, given for The Reading Agency’s annual lecture, he speaks as an advocate for passion. He pleads that children are not stopped from reading what they love, or encouraged to read what they hate. He suggests that reading is so very, fundamentally important for children. He also comments that reading gives children the ability to imagine, and work for a better world instead of being happy with the one they will grow up in. It encourages discontent, which encourages improvement.
His message is an important one, especially in an age where kids go to sleep with iPads in their hands. Technology has very quickly become a big part of children’s lives – what does that mean for their future? Perhaps it is a good thing, perhaps a bad thing. It is certainly not a black and white issue. But this technology that was not available ten or even five years ago can’t replace fundamental building blocks, like reading, visiting libraries, sharing in the community.
It’s a reminder for all of us, that reading does nothing to diminish imagination.
The re-printed speech can be read here: http://www.theguardian.com/books/2013/oct/15/neil-gaiman-future-libraries-reading-daydreaming?CMP=twt_gu
For more information about Neil Gaiman, check out his website: www.neilgaiman.com/
And to follow him on twitter, check out @neilhimself