It is these qualities that Mills says she hopes to incorporate in her work — albeit in a format that would be wildly unfamiliar to Hardy, the Brontës, or du Maurier.
Last month, she began writing for Hooked, an app that publishes fictional text message conversations.
I find it helps with the very different attention spans nowadays.” Since the birth of the novel, the discussion of how a story’s form influences the quality of its content has always been a charged one.
Even the current Encyclopedia Britannica entry for the word snootily asserts that “despite the high example of novelists of the most profound seriousness, such as Tolstoy, Henry James, and Virginia Woolf, the term novel still, in some quarters, carries overtones of lightness and frivolity.” This long-standing debate has only been magnified in the age of the internet, as young, experimental writers have found new ways to adapt their prose to the world’s most trafficked platforms.
In 2012, author Jennifer Egan collaborated with was translated into emoji and that version was later accepted into the Library of Congress.
So far, Mills’s first tale has earned over 85,000 views.
“When I think about releasing things in smaller episodes, I think of Dickens,” Mills said.
For one, the majority of American teens now own smartphones, and — according to research from the Pew Institute — are almost constantly online.
At the same time, more and more studies indicate that young adults’ interest in reading has waned.