Timeless Writing?

How do you make your writing timeless? I read fragments of books which mention today’s biggest brands: Uggs, Starbucks… Will these references to images of the present compromise a work’s hold over future generations? Or will is make their impression stronger by providing a peep hole into a world which existed long ago and whose history fascinates readers in the future? Perhaps it is like Austen to us – a timeless window into a world no one living can still recount.

But this begs yet another question: is the propensity to reference current brands in fiction a comment on society itself? It hints that we need such ties to reality to engage with a story, to relate it to our own lives…It would be sad if it is the brands a character owns, rather than deeper elements of their humanity which speaks to us from the novels we read…

These are just thoughts which came to me today, I was reading a sample of a book on my kindle (you can get samples of books before buying them! Genius!), and the references to brands was insane – it felt like the author was trying to use them to draw you in…but I just felt conned, considering that the writing itself didn’t strike me as brilliant. Needless to say, by the time I finished the sample I didn’t go on to buy the book. So now I’ve moved on to Solar by Ian McEwan, and I’m reserving judgement for now! Although the style of writing is of the more intriguing type which I prefer, compared with the more obvious intrigue of plot which this other book suffered from. But these are all just personal opinions of course. Anyway! Enough of my rambling. The picture isn’t really related to the piece, more shows the way I’ve been spending my time while not at work and while the rare Netherlands sun is out: sitting in my favourite cafe, reading the economist on my Kindle, and drinking the best iced coffee I ever tasted! 


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