Literary journal launches app to promote 'serious' reading

Updated: 2015-03-18 08:18

By Xing Yi(China Daily)

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Literary journal launches app to promote 'serious' reading

A reader surfs People's Literature's online literature app, Thinker. [Photo by Wei Xiaohao/China Daily]

With online literature websites and mobile applications flourishing in China, a wide genre of fiction is readily available for readers. But most such writings online are considered more entertaining than "serious", which is why a new phone app called Thinker has been launched by People's Literature, a leading literary journal in China.

The app is a digital reading platform, where readers can download full texts of literary works published by People's Literature, and the app serves as a social network platform for writers and readers, where registered users can leave comments below an article and discuss their reading experiences.

"Traditional literary publications shouldn't be forgotten in the digital era, so we introduced some new media channels to encourage more contact between writers and readers, and to draw more attention to our journal from the younger generation," Ning Xiaoling, the deputy editor-in-chief of People's Literature, tells China Daily.

People's Literature opened its official account on Chinese microblog Sina Weibo in 2009, and today has more than 20,000 followers.

The app Thinker was put online to test public response last May, and it was also introduced to the country's literary circles through a network of staffers at People's Literature last year.

"We are still exploring ways to showcase traditional writers and their works online," Pan Suo, the editor of Thinker, says. "Existing platforms haven't provided them good market and reader access."

Thinker wants to be that platform, he says, adding that it makes increasing sense to have a strong online stage for traditional literature as fewer Chinese are buying printed journals these days. They are mostly reading books online.

Besides established authors, anyone willing to have works published on Thinker can submit them to the editor. The possibility of getting such writings published on Thinker is higher than getting them printed in journals such as People's Literature, according to Pan.

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