Reading a novel feels almost a thing of the past in our fast-paced, digitised world. We are a generation fed on clickbait and piecemeal information.
We balk when we see an article larger than a page (not to worry, I won’t keep you that long today). More and more books are consigned to dusty second-hand store shelves and the hipsters who faithfully trawl them.
With this in mind, The New York Public Library has introduced a digitally innovative way to read novels with InstaNovels. The NYPL posts classical novels and short stories to their Instagram highlights, accompanied by photo and video storytelling.
This is brilliant news not only for those of us who have forgotten what it feels like to hold a book. It’s a convenient way to digest some quality literature on the commute home when you’ve reached yesterday’s Instagram posts.
More than that, the initiative encourages, and perhaps introduces, young readers to classical titles and “aims to make great stories available even more widely” (NYPL). The NYPL teamed up with independent creative and advertising agency Mother in New York to create the lively stories.
The library launched the idea with Lewis Carroll’s Alice in Wonderland and design by popular artist, Magoz. You can still view this on their Insta Highlights. In the coming months, they plan to release “The Yellow Wallpaper”, a short story by Charlotte Perkins Gilman, illustrated by Buck, and “The Metamorphosis” a novella by Franz Kafka and illustrated by Cesar Pelizer.
This is not the first move made by the NYPL in an attempt to reach and relate to digital users. #BookfaceFriday is an example of another fun project created by the library, where every Friday they post a photo of a reader holding a book against a similar backdrop as the cover artwork.
Also worth checking out are their hashtags #captionthis and #bibliofortune. Although the library is over 100 years old, they clearly don’t intend to be left behind.