A Bleak New World

Bleak New World coverA Bleak New World, a dystopian anthology, is now available from Raven International Publishing. Ten stories were chosen to give possible tragic twists to our society, and mine, Property, was one of them.

In general, I’ve noticed that public opinion swings from polar extreme to polar extreme, and when it does, it swings too hard. Consider Prohibition. A law outlawing alcohol was desired so fervently that an actual amendment to the Constitution was passed in the US. This has only happened twenty-seven times. And yet sixteen years later, this law was so hated that another amendment was passed to rid Americans of Prohibition.

So I took that thought and applied it to one of the most likely end-game scenarios, that of economic collapse. I went back to the old idea of debtor’s prisons, which existed in the Victorian age. Now, of course, we look at that concept and say, “Well, that’s stupid. How can you pay back a debt if you’re stuck in jail?” My story found a way to make debt bondage profitable to the state.

It’s all about what could happen in the future Republic of California after the economic Armageddon. I really hope this is not one of those life following art things because to quote one of my beta friends, Stephanie Hunter Nisbet, “Alright, you’ve crossed my line of creepy. And that’s hard to do.”

I actually feel quite proud of that comment. Creepy is not usually an area of strength for me.

On Gregory Norris’s blog, Clark Sullivan of Raven International Publishing stated that confronting possible dark scenarios was actually a form of dealing with the possibility of them in our lives.

Clark pic BNW“”I choose to be upbeat and positive. I have slogged through a lot of life, death of children, divorce, crises of faith, and then there was Iraq,” says Clark, a former and still part-time soldier. “What I did there and what I was willing to do there really made me look at myself in a negative light. When I got home I was drifting, had thoughts about killing myself or at least going back to the war. Some of my persona is a mask to hide that darkness, or at least keep it down. I want peace so badly in this life because I’ve seen the darkness. I feel that we need to confront those emotions and feelings and really look hard at ourselves. Through story we have that opportunity. And on the business side, my then partner and I thought the sci-fi community would be a good place to dive in.”

Aldous Huxley’s Brave New World was the inspiration behind Bleak.

“I read that and thought this isn’t much of a dystopia,” Clark adds. “Being satisfied with your lot in life, that sounds pretty great. I’d much rather live there than 1984. So I wanted to see what others could come up with and I was pleasantly surprised.”

Read the rest of the post here: http://www.gregorylnorris.blogspot.com/2015/10/behold-bleak-new-world.html.

A Bleak New World is available at Amazon.

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More posts:

Interview with Bleak New World’s Publisher–Clark Chamberlain

Chris Galford on A Bleak New World

Bleak New World is Coming Out!