The Society of Authors has been ACCUSED of trying to 'dumb down' published works after new guidelines for novelists and historians were issued.
Dubbed 'Sun-script', the proposals include the EMPHASIS of at least one key word per paragraph, typically in bold capitals, and the reduction of chapters to smaller, more easily digestible 'chunks', headed with a single, apparently random, word from the following text.
'We're hoping to cast a wider audience net for literature,' said Tom Holland, chairman of the Society, 'and people clearly prefer the writing style of many of the current crop of periodicals. Without the visual clues provided by proper use of tabloid emphasis, many people become bored or LOSE their place on the page. The boredom effect is most pronounced with purely historical texts, although it can also happen particularly easily when reading fiction.'
'Non-fiction, non-historical writing -- classical works such as 'Take A Break' or 'Pick Me Up' -- really show the benefit that this technique has for keeping readers' attention,' he continued. 'To be able to maintain interest in what is QUINTESSENTIALLY a collection of the same stories week after week takes a true lyrical genius.'
Most authors are said to be 'horrified' at the request, some claiming that they will revert to potato stamps to publish their own work rather than adhere to the new publishing rules. J.K.Rowling has, however, agreed to COMPLETELY re-write every Harry Potter story on the basis that the move will bring in 'rucks more money'. 'I'm only in this for the cash, after all,' she said.