Writing Tips by Gary Speer

Tips for writers, musing about writing and life

Fiction writers must stay on top of changing technology

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If you hope to capture an audience and/or get your fiction published, you must work hard to stay on top of changing technology.

I’m not talking about something as simple as learning the latest computer software, or upgrading to a new computer, or even getting a new “smartphone.” I’m talking about the widespread changes in society prompted by new and newly spread technology.

Take security cameras as an easy example. If you are aware of the prevalence of a security cameras in our society when you write a scene — bank holdup, convenience store robbery, street crime, whatever — it will shape the way you write the scene. If you choose to ignore that prevalence, you will lose your readers and probably be called on it by an editor or publisher.

The fact is, such simple things as security cameras and telephone caller ID functions, mean you must write crime stories and thrillers differently than you might have only a decade ago.

Sure, if you want to think only about writing tools — computers, software, smartphones, etc. — when you think high-tech, you’re free to do so. But if you write fiction and you want it published and read, you need to think social changes, too, when you think about staying on top of changing technology.

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