Saturday, May 12, 2012

Execution


Today we watched our grandson graduate from New York State University at Oswego. He was amongst 1700 graduates who were born about the same year the internet came into existence. He and his fellow graduates all around the country have no understanding of what it is like to live without the internet, a cell phone, smart phone or I-phone.
In my Keegan Bay stories, the members of the Blenders are all fifty-five plus years old with some of the characters coming in under thirty, but not many. Thus it behooves me to stay up to date on all the latest gadgets available to the general public and to law enforcement as well.
Recently, a member of one of our writers’ groups presented a contemporary story where the main character, a man in his thirties, took notes on a steno pad and worried about finding a camera. With an I-phone, he could have something similar to an entire office complex available to him and the author would have a truly contemporary story.
In my current work-in-progress, The Corpse at Keegan Bay, I have a villainess who has already murdered one person and has plans to kill several more, including Doll Reynolds, the president of the Blenders. Agnes can work with poisons and creating accidents, but my challenge will be to use something technically contemporary as she stalks and attempts to kill Doll.
Doll’s job in the book will be to get herself up to date so she can figure out what is happening to her, before it’s too late. She has to buy herself a smart phone!
Some facts you might find interesting which I found about the smartphone while researching this: (From Popular Mechanics, July 2011) The origins of the mobile phone date back to Finland and Japan in the 70’s. The first billion units sold in twenty years, the second billion in four and the third billion in two. By the end of 2010 the subscription rate stood at 5 billion, or 75 per cent of all people on earth. The smartphone has been with us for the last twelve years—since my grandson was eight. This device is now a handheld PC, with wireless, GPS and multi-media enabled. Doll needs to communicate with her Blender colleagues. Today’s graduates are in constant communication via texting, and social-media, Facebook, Myspace and You-tube. The Internet has replaced the library as their research resource.
These are not second nature to Doll—yet.
I do not own a sophisticated wireless phone, only an old cell phone which I can use to talk to my domestic offspring and friends who are on the same service, and text to the same- service people. It takes pictures, but I haven’t a clue how to do anything with them. But my characters have all the up to date equipment, and if they don’t, when appropriate, they are willing to update themselves and their lives. Unless they are old fuddie-duddies who are still having trouble with automatic drive. So now I find myself playing catch-up with my own characters.

Veronica Helen Hart is the author of The Prince of Keegan Bay, Champagne Books. www.veronicahhart.com

3 comments:

Big Mike said...

I always enjoy research for a story. You learn things that typically don't comer up in day to day life.

Michael Davis (Davisstories.com)
Author of the Year (2008 and 2009)
Award of Excellence (2011)

Julie Eberhart Painter said...

So far, the smart phone is much smarter than I. However, I see prompts on my new Windows 7 and my replacement printer, so, let's say their is a smarter phone in my future than there has been in my past.

January Bain said...

Researching makes us smarter! Good blog, Veronica.