The 43 Percent

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The National Endowment for the Arts recently published its Annual Arts Basic Survey, and the news isn’t so great for literature. As reported by Dani Spencer at Electric Literature, only 43 percent of American adults read a novel, short story, poem or play on their own for pleasure in 2015. That’s down from a recent high of more than 50 percent in 2008. A higher percentage of women read than men, and those with more education were also more likely to read.


Kelly Lynn Thomas reads, writes, and sometimes sews in Pittsburgh, PA. Her creative work has appeared in Sou’wester, Thin Air Magazine, Heavy Feather Review, metazen, and others, and she received her MFA in Creative Writing from Chatham University. She is hopelessly obsessed with Star Wars and can always be found with a large mug of tea. She also runs the very small Wild Age Press. Read more at kellylynnthomas.com. More from this author →