Technology is affecting our lives in many ways. Some are more obvious than others. For example, we rarely think of how it has changed the way people create works of fictions and how they are presented to us. But that simple fact has certainly made a great difference in our lives. Here are a few differences between yesterday and today, when it comes to works of fiction.
How Fiction is presented to Us
Ask anyone, not part of the film industry, if twenty years ago they thought cinemas would have to reinvent themselves, if they wanted to survive, and they will all say no. Why? Because even with the advent of VHS, BETA and DVDs, cinemas were still reaching its public in a completely different way than these other formats, that people could watch at home. But now, that the pandemic has locked us inside our home for various lengths and multiple periods of time, the crisis the dark rooms were already facing, before this health issue came along, has gotten to such a high level, that they are forced to entertain new ideas, if they want to go on existing.
It is not just the major internet platforms, like Netflix and Amazon that are causing them harm. People have adopted new ways of being entertained. For example, they listen to podcasts on Spotify, or they follow their favorite influencers on major social networks. And now, a new competitor will soon be coming along, as The Triality is bringing back the oral tradition of storytelling, using today’s technology, to access viewers around the world and place them in one giant amphitheater, every night.
More Work for the Writers
When a writer tells a story, he or she needs to take in account the media that will distribute it, in the end. When you write a book, descriptions are important, since the reader can only truly know the context and environment, if the writer provides it. Otherwise, it will leave blank spaces in the imagination of the reader, that he will need to fill by himself. Since not everyone are artists, these blanks create weaknesses in the story, for many readers who don’t possess sufficient imagination to continue the thought process of the writer, inside their mind.
At the opposite, writing a screenplay for a film or a TV series, emphasizes on the dialogue between the characters. The environment in which they move, through the various scenes, may be identified simply as “in the park” or “in the living room.” That is because the director of the movie will choose these locations, before shooting the film, as he or she envisions them to be.
But even that part is also changing, now that we have platforms like Netflix, needing lots of content to satisfy paying members. The cost of a great director is often considered to be secondary, nowadays. To compensate for this new weakness, the production companies often ask more of their writers, so that they can provide as much information to the director. That way, it doesn’t leave too much work to be handled by the director.
In TV series, the screenwriter is often the showrunner as well. That job comes on top of the director, as it is the showrunner who can accept or decline, scenes, according to how they were meant to be shot, when it was first written. If they are too far from that point in view, then the character may become unbelievable. That is why the screenwriter needs to step in, to correct the mistake.
In the Future
The evolution of society and technology will continue to modify how a writer creates and the role he plays in the creation process. Like all other jobs, the need to be flexible in the modern world for a writer, has become of primary importance. And it will only increase, since now, robots have started to enter the field as well.