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One of the most challenging things about writing fantasy is creating realms that breathe. And another is constructing societies that actively change. It’s not just about creating the now when the story takes place, but it’s imaging the realm five years down the road, or throughout the series.
Underneath our way of living is a degree of uncertainty that is fundamental is any world. As long as we have people with a semblance of humanity in our writing, there will always be the fear of the unknown. This is what makes the adventure exciting. We don’t always want to know what’s next. We don’t always want the characters to know about the betrayal on page 301 either.
The core of this revolves around the fact that we live in a society that’s always changing. It’s what gives me hope. Now, we think not giving women the right to vote is ridiculous (Well, hopefully most of you reading this do). Society didn’t always feel that way. It gives me hope, and I want to believe we can continue to evolve into a people who honor and revere equality above all else.
These are the types of things we have to consider when giving life to new worlds. What’s important to us? How can we show that without bogging the reader down with a soapbox? Fantasy gives us the opportunity to write about the issues, without making them issues. I love it!
Guess what got me thinking about all of this? The Olympics. I started wondering what our world would be like in four years. Understanding the ways a people change is a great study for the genre of fantasy.
This brings me to my goal for the post. I thought it would be fun to make a list of guesses for what the world will be like in four years. We can compare now to what it will be during the next Summer Olympics. Will you help contribute to the list? There are no wrong answers here. I thought I’d give some examples to show what I mean. These are little things. The key is in the details.
Some things that might change in four years:
5G will be the standard for smart phones.
Phone calls will only be socially acceptable after someone e-mails first.
All news will be world news.
Facebook will be different.
Social Media will not be promo spam.
A different platform will replace the promo-ing that goes on with Twitter now.
People will probably still care about Miley Cyrus’s haircuts (*sigh*… I will probably still click on the link to look at the picture. *second sigh*).
It will be socially required to be environmentally friendly.
There will be a new teenage boy band who I won’t know the name of.
All right, I laid my soul bare. Kidding. But really, what do you think?
Contest is over. Thank you!
Thank you for being loyal readers, and I promise in a few weeks we’ll have something really special for all of you. J
Kinley Baker (@kinleybaker)