When all else is lost, the future still remains. ~ Christian Bovee
Science-fiction writers have long been looking ahead — getting readers to envision the future. To dream it. Feel it. Live it.
Fiction, in general, focuses on vision — dreaming up stories with little known characters and worlds. Such a narrative requires tensions and problems, which forces one to consider a spectrum of potential, of roles we might play in making the world better or worse.
The future remains a concept we explore in a myriad of ways.
In case you haven’t heard, FutureMe is a new website that allows you to write an email that will be delivered sometime later. Years from now, you could get a letter from your younger self saying, I hope you broke it off with that egomaniac and finally got around to the career you were talking about.
Of course, it would be better if it happened in reverse: Walk away from the guy with huge ego and go with the career, but we already talked about the younger-self in the previous post.
One question about the future I ask myself on occasions is how I might feel about certain issues down the line — politics, religion, writing, worldviews. Looking back at the younger self, the idealistic known-it-all college student, I can say that many things have changed since then, opinions have shifted over time.
Time will change and reverse many present opinion. ~ Plato
We change, no debate there. The world changes. Businesses change. Today, companies look into the future more than ever, searching for the next trend, next big concept. One of the most desired qualities in management-level positions, according to Forbes, is the ability to conceptualize — to study the market and predict needs and wants. Be at the forefront of the ‘idea’ business.
I used to say trends are for the very young, and I don’t need to know about the latest this or that. But to keep in step with the writing world, for example (not ahead but barely in step), one must know what’s developing in the publishing business, contests, marketing.
But is there no end to this conceptualizing process? Are we sacrificing the present at the hands of the future, or is this the new normal? Should I just shut up and go write a letter to my future self?
Photo courtesy: imgarcade.com