Will all the different hats muddle our heads? Stop us from concentrating on the job in hand – the incredibly important requirement to provide reading matter to the rest of the world.
Sitting on a bench on a windy day pondering seems to have been replaced by Facebook posts. How sad.
Thankfully, diaries are with us still in the form of blogs. After all, writers must expunge the mental gunk somehow – but while we all become extremely proficient at all of the above while snapping quick photos and uploading them to enhance our blogs, does it add to our writing life or dilute it?
When, once we could hunker down over a leather-topped desk, pouring out plots, either bashing away at an old Olivetti typewriter or scribbling frantically with a Parker pen, there was far less noise to drag us away from the process of story creation. No Tweets, emails, PMs, IMs, texts, etc, and for that matter, no twitching to check, lest we miss the thing, that may, possibly, be the most important thing, the most exciting, life-changing titbit of news.
We’ve all seen the people crossing the park on the way to work in the morning, phone either clamped to one ear or being checked every thirty seconds in case they – miss something!
Certainly we can write about all that technology brings to our lives, but what of all those mediums we have lost? Letters, telegrams, notes, memos, postcards, things we can look at, touch, smell and remember. I often think of letters found in dusty trunks in attics when an aged relative pootled off to the great upstairs. At some point, those fantastic finds will fade away.
And what was the cut-off date when it all stopped? When the scythe fell to all that was tangible; when everything became digital, deletable?
Back to those postcards! How I loved getting pictures of faraway places, scribblings of the lucky traveller’s experiences; beautiful exotic stamps – and sometimes an exciting stain or two to be sniffed and wondered over. Was the writer quaffing brandy and spilled a splot when pontificating on the gorgeousness of the roué they met by the pool?
And then there’s body language – all those subtle nuances that give us away. Twitches and flickers an inquisitive observer will dive on immediately. The glint in the eye, a visible paling of the cheek belying some heart-felt emotion, all will be over-looked by those with their eyes ever-glued to their hand-held devices.
When we write about characters, reflecting upon their lives, will the new superficiality come across in our words?
Things are evolving apace; I do hope our brains can keep up. It’s all very well to sport different hats but we must wear them well.