Twitter Chat in Review: Where is the Great Preservation Novel?

Posted on: March 9th, 2012 by Sarah Heffern

Another monthly Twitter chat has come and gone, and with it the usual lively exchange of ideas - this time, on the topic of books about preservation. I was surprised to discover how heavily the recommended books skewed towards nonfiction/academic titles rather than fiction -- in fact, we eventually added the disclaimer that a novel could just really effectively evoke a "sense of place" to pass muster as preservation novel.

I am hoping this is mostly a result of the fact that our chatters seem to include a higher-than-average number of folks enrolled in undergraduate and graduate preservation programs -- and not because there aren't enough preservation-centric novels. Though if the problem is the latter, it provides an excellent opportunity for aspiring writers, yes?

As always, we have a full transcript of the chat available,  but to whet your appetite for it, here's a selection of the books recommended:

Nonfiction

Fiction

One last note ... Both through the Twitter chat and other conversations, the idea of doing a Twitter-based preservation book chat has come up more than a few times, so I thought this presented an excellent opportunity to survey PreservationNation readers to see if there was sufficient interest to support such an undertaking. I've drafted a short survey (only six super-easy questions) to help us figure out if this is something folks want to do. You can take the survey here. Thanks in advance for taking the time to give us feedback on this idea.

The National Trust for Historic Preservation works to save America's historic places. Join us today to help protect the places that matter to you.

Sarah Heffern

Sarah Heffern

Sarah Heffern is the social media strategist for the National Trust’s Public Affairs team. While she embraces all things online and pixel-centric, she’s also a hard-core building hugger, having fallen for preservation in a fifth grade “Built Environment” class. Follow her on Twitter at @smheffern.

General, Social Media