LIBRARIES NEED INVESTMENTS TO SURVIVE
They would doubtless deny it, but today’s release of a new set of figures from the Department for Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) looks like a textbook case of softening up the public for yet another fall of the axe.
The subject is our public libraries – which, to read the accompanying coverage, are in danger of falling into dusty decline. Apparently, only 12.8% of us made a monthly habit of visiting our local library last year, and just 40% of us went there at least once. The DCMS reckons that the number of weekly visitors to libraries has fallen by 32% in five years.
Cue the inevitable noises about greater use of volunteers and the possibility of moving book-lending services into pubs and shops (predictably enough, supermarkets are usually mentioned), as well as sad predictions about what is now likely to transpire.
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BUILDING BRIDGES BETWEEN SCIENCE FICTION ROMANCE AUTHORS AND READERS
Given the niche nature of SFR, I have to frequently search both on but mostly off the beaten path to satisfy my need for such stories. I can’t afford to stick to just one type of medium or distribution system. Furthermore, above all I’m a fan of the subgenre rather than specific authors or filmmakers. I will try any and all stories as well as most of their sources. In fact, I’d probably be that way even if science fiction romance were a hot trend.
What this means for science fiction romance authors is that rock star credentials don’t carry any more weight with me than a pass for an entry-level stage hand. Anyone with an SFR story available for consumption is a star in my eyes.
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How do you feel about the fact that so many libraries are closing across the country?