Today my short parody, “Please Publish My Adult Coloring Book: Grow the F*ck Up!” is featured on McSweeney’s Internet Tendency. I’m perversely proud of this, for some reason. Mostly, I think, because it validates my thinking that this silly piece actually contains a great idea for a book!
However, I am also sensitive to the notion that adult coloring books have therapeutic value. When my dad had a stroke, this was something I bought him to help retrain motor memory and create even though debilitated. I also think coloring is fun, and it’s kind of cool when groups of people gather together in coffeeshops to fill in the blanks and chat in a sort of crayola-laden kaffeeklatsch.
Or as @ShinyZomby puts it on twitter:
— Megan (@ShinyZomby) April 25, 2016
Anyway — no, it’s not the therapeutic value, it’s the denegration of publishing and the deskilling of the arts I’m against. We are substituting artistic creation with…something else. So I’ve gathered together a list of some research I’ve been doing (and madly sharing on twitter all day) as a sort of “but seriously!” counter-message campaign:
Adult Colouring Book Craze Triggers Global Pencil Shortage (Independent UK)
Why Adults are Buying Coloring Books for Themselves (New Yorker)
I do like some coloring books.
The kind where the pages turn yellow-colored with time, for instance.
Thanks again, McSweeney’s!
I hope this becomes some kind of ouroboros and Arnzen's pitch for a new adult coloring book actually gets published. https://t.co/WbcT5JJ4KA
— Jeremy R Johnson (@JRJ_Is_Probable) April 25, 2016
Thanks Jeremy! I totally concur!