So, I watched this trailer:
I like the concept. I think I could enjoy the book. But…
Technology is a word commonly associated with computers and other devices which we use to manipulate the world around us. We think of technology as a product of post-industrial civilization. Many people recognize that technology poses (almost) as much of a threat as a benefit to us. Science fiction is a genre that frequently tries to raise awareness about the dangers of technology.
But there’s a problem with all of this. Technology is, technically speaking, anything and everything we make or use that gives us an “unnatural” advantage to survive, thrive, and dominate our world. Yes, computers are technology. But so is rope. Yes, cars are technology. But so is the wheel. Yes, bulldozers are technology. But so is a lever. Humanity thrives because we use technology. We are the dominant species on this planet because our brains allow us to invent and use technologies to give us advantages over competing species.
Therefore, the idea of outlawing technology is specious at best. We couldn’t do it and survive. We couldn’t build castles (shown in the video) or make swords if technology were outlawed, because both are pieces of technology.
Obviously this objection has less to do with the trailer itself and more to do with the concept and the misuse of a single word. I admit that. Sue me. But…I’ve simply had too much education both within and outside of school to let this pass.
Thanks to our technology, we are a society of buzz words. Technology itself is a buzz word. But that doesn’t mean the way we use it is accurate. If you want to reach an intelligent, sympathetic audience that is willing to suspend disbelief, and you want to do so in writing, then you have to take care with regards to your accuracy, especially with buzz words, and especially when using buzz words as a dominant part of your concept.
A willing suspension of disbelief is necessary for the success of all fiction. You can blow it with a single word, because a single word can plant the seed of doubt.