Alejandro Jodorowsky 2/3
|Will you mourn the loss of the physical book if eBooks become the dominant format? |
William Gibson : It doesn’t fill me with quite the degree of horror and sorrow that it seems to fill many of my friends. For one thing, I don’t think that physical books will cease to be produced. But the ecological impact of book manufacture and traditional book marketing –- I think that should really be considered. We have this industry in which we cut down trees to make the paper that we then use enormous amounts of electricity to turn into books that weigh a great deal and are then shipped enormous distances to point-of-sale retail. Often times they are remained or returned, using double the carbon footprint. And more electricity is used to pulp them and turn them into more books. If you look at it from a purely ecological point of view, it’s crazy.
|Vice: I feel a little bad because I read your Twitter, and there were a couple of posts on there recently about how the process of doing interviews for new books is sort of torturous for you. |
[b]William Gibson : [/b]That will come later, toward the end of the tour. But you’re at the front of the queue. [laughs] I’m saying things here more or less for the first time, and I still haven’t been compelled by repetition to pointlessly change what I’m saying.
Hopefully I’ll get this out before that time comes for you. In your last three books, you’ve developed this world where marketing is treated like espionage. There are agents and double agents and intrigue upon intrigue, but it will be in the service of something like a new denim line. Is this approach intended to be satire? Or is it closer to the truth as you see it?
[b]William Gibson : [/b]If something really is satire, I don’t enjoy it. It can’t be satire and be that good. What I like is something that’s closer to a useful, anthropological description that has a really, really sharp satirical edge. Satire, traditionally in our culture, pushes the exaggeration past where the edge really hurts, and you sort of just goof on it. But other cultures, like the British, totally get it. Where you want to be with satire is right on the razor’s edge, where it really hurts and you can’t tell whether you’re being put on or not.