The future is already here – it’s just not evenly distributed.
Writing about tech is as necessary for me as breathing. It’s something I do every day and have done for a long time. It’s probably not surprising that the novel I’m working on involves a tech company. When I started, I didn’t think of myself as writing science fiction. There are no jetpacks. There is no space travel. There are no cats shooting lasers out of their butts.
I spent quite a while setting up a story world that would help me reinforce the story I am telling. This has included creating a fake office, fake products and fake managers with fake management problems. It has included creating company in-jokes and company events. There is a boss and a boss’s wife.
This is stuff I’ve been working on since 2010. I named the company Time.ly.
This morning, as I was writing, I noticed that when I typed the company name, it turned into a URL. Initially, I dismissed it as my writing software mimic-ing Word’s annoying habit of turning all URLs into a link. In trying to remove the distracting hyperlink formatting, I discovered that it goes somewhere.
Try it: Time.ly
This is but one small problem. I won’t even go into the challenge of writing about cutting edge products that will still seem cutting edge when I finish the novel.
It turns out that I am not alone in my struggles.
Earlier in the week, this article came out with writer Warren Ellis saying, “Futurism’s gotten harder to write, because the future arrives so quickly.” Although he’s talking about the future, I would extend that to writing about today as non-historical fiction which is why I totally get the next thing Ellis says which is that his new novel is set in,”near-as-damnit present day.” (hat tip to Chris McMahon for the article)
The photo of Ellis in the article shows his bald head in the foreground yet lined up with a row of skulls in the background. I’ve seen this photo before…
only it wasn’t a photo. It was writing.
Alas, poor Yorick! I knew him, Horatio; a fellow of infinite jest, of most excellent fancy; he hath borne me on his back a thousand times; and now, how abhorred in my imagination it is! My gorge rises at it. Here hung those lips that I have kissed I know not how oft. Where be your gibes now? Your gambols? Your songs? Your flashes of merriment, that were wont to set the table on a roar? (Hamlet, V.i)