This CNN.com article on “internet novels” in China is tantalizing. It’s an interesting story, but this treatment is too shallow—it reads like gee-golly dot-com coverage circa 2000.
It’s about the rise of young writers who build huge audiences on bulletin boards:
Today [Murong Xuecun] is considered one of the most famous authors to have emerged in contemporary China. His debut work, “Leave Me Alone: A novel of Chengdu,” has been read by millions of Chinese “netizens” […] and adapted for film and television and translated into German, French and English.
He also is viewed as a pioneer of what has become nothing short of a literary renaissance online in the country, particularly among young Chinese writers. This is a constituency that has struggled to find a platform for their work in a publishing industry that is viewed as conservative as it often faces state censorship. Instead of remaining silent, a new generation of authors has found its voice on the Web.
Mostly I like the idea of the “internet novel” as a genre:
Bookstores now have sections devoted to Internet novels published as paperbacks […]
And mostly mostly I am just fascinated with the culture of reading and writing in China. I want to know more, more, more. Where’s James Fallows when you need him?