Sunday, October 26, 2014

Michelle Conder: Technology

It’s pretty safe to say that I am not technologically savvy. I can use my mobile phone to call and text and I can even access Google Chrome as long as things are going well. As soon as there’s a glitch I’m done. I’m back at the shop handing it over for someone else to fix.

But I love technology. Being a writer would be that much more difficult without access to the web and I use it all the time. Something my children find very unfair because I don’t let them use it at all. In fact I don’t let them use any electronic devices other than a camera. My reasoning is that I use electronic devices for work. They are children. It is their job to play and learn how to be in the world. Computer games are a time sap and the internet was meant for adult usage. That means that it is full of adult content and I don’t want my children being inadvertently educated about life from unknown sources before they’re ready.

There’s another reason I limit their usage of technology while they’re young. I think there is this belief that technology has made life easier, but really I think it has just made life more accessible. And with accessibility has come the desire for more; which might account for why everyone I speak to starts out a conversation with a harried, “I’m so busy” statement. Somewhere, at some point, I think we need to pull back a little and turn our devices off if only to give ourselves some time for uninterrupted contemplation. Because without periods of uninterrupted contemplation we lose the capacity to learn about who we are in isolation to the influences around us.

This is particularly important when writing a novel. A story is made up of action scenes and reaction scenes. Something happens and our characters are fully immersed in the action. Then the character – and reader – needs to have some time to mull over that action. Some time to think and to plan. Some time to gather their courage and forge on. Without this it is just action, action, action which would become draining and ultimately boring to read.

In real life the danger of technology is that we don’t ever switch it off long enough to give ourselves that time. So my New Year’s resolution – late or early depending on your perspective - is to put technology in its place. To have it as a tool and not an extra appendage I can’t live without.
How do you feel about technology? Does it rule your life or do you have a healthy balance worked out for yourself? And if you do – pass on your secrets. I would love to hear them.

If you would like any information on my books and up and coming releases please jump on my website.

Best to everyone and happy reading!


1 comment:

Liz Flaherty said...

Gosh, I so agree with you. I'm almost sure if we'd HAD today's technology when my kids were young, I wouldn't have had the forethought to severely limit their usage of it. (I let them watch too much TV as it was!) I worry that children are entering school without knowing how to play. I enjoyed your post!