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Cultural References in Books

I have already written quite a few of them into my book such as musicians they like, movies they watch, places they visit (ex: Petsmart), etc… but sometimes I wonder if I should give these places and/or things some non-dated names, things that won’t forever lock my book in the here and now.

I personally like running into these little things in books, like a character watching FOX news or reading The New York Times, or even taking common over the counter medicines like Tylenol PM, but I wonder what ratio of readers prefers to not see these similarities to their current life. Is mentioning things like this a deterrent to readers and something I should stay away from?

Fellow writers or just avid readers: What’s your take on cultural references in books?

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