Dating is fun, right? Yeah, totally. Unless you've been doing it for an awfully long time, and then it's just tedious. :-)
Even though the occasional date is great, we as authors need to avoid dating ourselves or our books. Okay, that's totally cheesy. Sorry. :-)
What do I mean, you ask?
I started reading a book a few months ago that had been recently published. But the more into the book I got, the more I realized the author was very out of it when it came to technology terms, slang, and other things. The words he used showed he'd either written the book in the nineties, or was completely stuck in that era. And the dialog was so distracting, I couldn't finish the book. I spent most of the time rolling my eyes.
Not everyone is going to trip over this sort of thing, I know. So why does it matter? Mainly because a lot of readers will be pulled out of the story if they come across something that is really out-dated. It's really hard to find appropriate slang for all generations, so I think it's okay to slip in the occasional word here and there, but when the entire dialogue is mainly, "like, totally cool!" then we've got a problem. :-)
An example of one of my pet peeves: "Bye!" Sarah said, then snapped/flipped/clicked the phone shut.
Really? Most people don't use flip phones anymore. And those who do will end up switching for something newer when their current phone breaks and they can't find a flip phone. What's the better way to show that someone has ended a call? How about this: "Bye!" Sarah said, then ended the call. :-) Or, even though it's also dated, "hung up" can also be used.
The point is, think of ways that will be more universally acceptable over the next several years. Yeah, that's right. You heard me. Predict the future! :-)
What are some of your pet peeves when it comes to technology, slang, and other things being outdated? Have you ever noticed something like this when reading? If so, did it bother you? Or am I the only one? :-)