A reader tells me of a proposed US congressional act – The Persons With No Abilities Act of 2013 – that he thinks South Africa should adopt holus-bolus.
He might be kidding, of course, but I instantly liked the idea. Yet, when I considered it more deeply, I realised all that the Americans propose doing is to formalise a policy South Africa has tacitly pursued for years.
The main difference between what is published in newspapers and what is published on the internet is that generally the internet is often believable, but untrue, whereas what’s in the newspapers is often unbelievable but, sadly, true.
For example: the internet has spread a story that a Bloemfontein hospital’s intensive care unit found that patients in a particular bed always died on Sunday mornings.
Arnu Garg, who runs that fascinating free daily website called Awad (A Word a Day – wordsmith.org/awad), recently introduced the Sanskrit word dharma. He was writing about attending a 10-day meditation retreat during which he was “secluded from the outside world for the first nine days: no e-mail, no cellphones, no reading, no writing. And no talking.”
I have decided that, for the time being at least, I will publish my own books. I’ll do so via the Kindle – that book-sized tablet with various little keys enabling the reader to browse any one of a million and more books, even best-sellers, more cheaply than a bookshop.
Thousands of authors are today going for self-publishing as the conventional publishing industry and book retailers are currently reeling about, wondering what’s going on.