Whenever I read a contemporary literary novel that describes the world we're living in, I wait for the science fiction tools to come out. Because they have to - the material demands it.
I find it interesting to see people - mostly people who are younger than I am - going to considerable trouble to try to reproduce things from an era that was far more physical, from a less virtual day.
If you make something, it's an artifact. It's something that somebody or some corporate entity has caused to come into being. A great many human beings have thought about each of the artifacts that surround us. Different degrees of intelligence and attention have been brought to bear on anything.
I grew up in southwestern Virginia. I was born in South Carolina, but only because my parents had a vacation cabin or something there on the beach. I was like a summer baby. But I did grow up in the South. I grew up in serious, serious Appalachia, in a very small town.
As a writer of fiction who deals with technology, I necessarily deal with the history of technology and the history of technologically induced social change. I roam up and down it in a kind of special way because I roam down it into history, which is invariably itself a speculative affair.
I don't think nostalgia is a healthy modality. But nostalgia and a sense of history are not the same thing. Nostalgia is a dysfunction of the historical impulse, or a corruption of the historical impulse.
I think that our future has lost that capital F we used to spell it with. The science fiction future of my childhood has had a capital F - it was assumed to be an American Future because America was the future. The Future was assumed to be inherently heroic, and a lot of other things, as well.