Two more days to go…

On November 8th, the first anniversary of Trump’s election, MAGA 2020 & Beyond will go live. Pre-order the Kindle version now. Print versions will be available on the day of release.

Two of my short stories are included:

  • Dolus Magnus: The Great Hoax

MAGA2020.dolus

  • Equality

MAGA2020.equality

Edited by Jason Rennie, the anthology includes an intro by Milo Yiannopoulos, essays by John C. Wright, Ivan Throne, Dawn Witzke, and Alfred Genneson, as well as fiction by Scott Bell, Jon Del Arroz, L. Jagi Lamplighter, Marina Fontaine, Brad Torgersen, Arlan Andrews Sr., Alfred Genneson, Chris Donahue, Christine Chase, David Harr, Daniel Humphreys, Dawn Witzke, Elaine Arias, Justin Robinson, Molly Pitcher, P.A. Piatt, Richard B. Atkinson, Tamara Wilhite, and Sandor Novak. I also wrote the afterword.

Dignity, Discernment, and the Importance of Borders

The idea that good fences make good neighbors isn’t as old and outdated as some people would like you to believe. In fact, go to any counselor, advisor, or group for advice about dealing with hurtful people and eventually the subject of boundaries comes up. It’s common sense too. We don’t leave our doors unlocked. We don’t post our passwords on social media. As good as things are in our America, it is not utopia, and it’s populated with flawed human beings, not angels. My friend and co-author, talks about the inspiration for her first (and, I think, excellent) short story called “Auntie’s Magnificent Bricks.” #MAGA2020

American Slytherin

I wanted to tell you a bit about my first story. “Auntie’s Magnificent Bricks” was written specifically for the MAGA 2020 anthology. I took a good look at the call for entries and said to myself, “Sure, I can give that a shot!” Here’s what the call for entries said:

MAKE AMERICA GREAT AGAIN. Create a Utopian future that was brought to us by President Donald J. Trump. How big will the wall be, and will it make things better? Will the UN & NATO be replaced by something better? Will Russia & China become our new allies, help us destroy ISIS, and get Iran & North Korea in line? Under Trump will we colonize in space, will The Smithsonian divulge secrets of ancient cultures, will the celebrities move out of the USA, or will we see Hollywood lose its grip on America?

TRUMP HATERS NEED NOT APPLY. Looking for…

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A Russian immigrant’s musings on utopia

My friend and co-author, Marina Fontaine blogs about her upcoming story, Exile in the soon to be released MAGA:2020 & Beyond.

When I first heard of a pro-Trump anthology intended to show the bright side of Trump’s election, I was curious about the concept, but had no thought of contributing. For one, stories of a great future are hard to write. There is less conflict in a utopia. Typically, positive future stories tend to be science fiction, with Star Trek being probably the prime example. The appeal of Star Trek at its best comes from the sense of wonder and adventure, and the conflict, when it happens, is usually external in nature, be it hostile aliens or technical difficulties.The Federation is essentially a utopia, but the show doesn’t linger on the details. If someone decided to tell a story of the greatness of life in The Federation, it would likely be a snooze fest.

Add to it the fact that I am a dystopian author, and you can see why I initially scrolled on by when the submission call came across my Facebook feed.

But then, as I suppose is the case with many speculative fiction writers, I started thinking of the “what if.”

Read the rest of it here: http://marinafontaine.blogspot.com/2017/10/coming-nov-8-in-maga-2020-and-beyond.html

Coming Nov. 8, 2017…Equality

There is nothing quite like being able to condense an idea—especially a profound one—into a few memorable words or a single line. Some time ago I started collecting memorable quotes, and from time to time, I use them for inspiration, not just for my writing, but for life.

Among my favorites is Robert A. Heinlein’s “An armed society is a polite society.” Another is Jerry Pournelle’s “Freedom is not free. Free men are not equal. Equal men are not free.”

I came to the United States to be free, not to be equal. Under communism we were all equal—equally miserable, equally hopeless, equally oppressed.

But freedom comes with a price, because freedom is NOT free. Yes, a cliche. Like most, it’s a cliche for a reason. What is that price?

Responsibility.

I know. A dirty word these days. Too bad. And I’m not talking about the ersatz type of responsibility known as “collective responsibility.” I’m talking about the personal, individual kind.

Freedom means taking personal responsibility. See, I said it again. And I will keep saying it for as long as I draw breath.

Free men (yes, that means the entirety of humankind, both sexes) are responsible men. They are individually and personally responsible. For what? Well, for starters, they are responsible for their own safety. Today that means knowing how to defend yourself.

For a woman, especially, that can mean a firearm.

I have carried a firearm for almost thirty years.

Thank you, Founding Fathers.

Thank you, Second Amendment.

Thank you, NRA.

No woman should be denied the means to defend herself. No woman should be reduced to fighting a bigger, meaner attacker with her bare hands, or with ineffective second-rate tools. Women’s lives are worth more than that. You, your daughters’, your wives’, your sisters’, your mothers’ lives are worth more that some delusion that evil doesn’t exist or that a sign will stop a criminal or that the state will protect.

This lesson—that you are personally responsible for your own safety—is a lesson that I hope no woman will ever have to learn the hard way. Death is not something you can come back from.

One of the reasons I write is because a story is a means of allowing my readers to vicariously experience things they wouldn’t otherwise—whether that something is exploring a new planet, pretending to have superpowers or magic, or surviving a life-changing experience.

My short story, “Equality” (included in Superversive Press’s upcoming anthology, MAGA: 2020 & Beyond) is NOT about violence. Rather, it’s about empowerment. It’s the story of one woman’s journey from victimhood to personal responsibility.

“When seconds count, the police are only minutes away.”

MAGA: 2020 & Beyond will be released on Nov. 8th, 2017, exactly one year after Donald Trump’s election. It is available now for pre-order HERE.

 

 

 

Coming Nov. 8, 2017…Dolus Magnus: The Great Hoax

The first time I heard the term, GIGO, was in my machine language class—no, we weren’t using abaci or slide rules (we’d given those up the year before).

It’s an acronym that stands for “garbage in, garbage out” and it’s meant to convey the simple idea, that no matter how good your algorithm, if the data you enter is garbage, your output is also going to be garbage. For someone that works with data, GIGO becomes part of everyday life. It’s one of those axioms that you should never forget, but one that, unfortunately, many do.

Sometimes human beings get caught up in all that they think they can do and forget to stop and ask if it should be done at all—some would call this hubris. Scientists are just as vulnerable to hubris, and greed, as anyone else. There is nothing remotely Vulcan about them, despite portrayals to the contrary. We all have ego. We also all have mortgages and the desire to live well. We all have a desire to be relevant, to have our words and ideas given the respect we think they deserve. We are all, in essence, human beings first. And as such, we are prone to human frailties and while we may tell ourselves that we serve the better angels of our nature, we rarely do just that. There’s always a little bit more to it—like Pygmalion, we fall in love with our creation, be it a sculpture, a theory, or a computer model.

I have seen science corrupted by a strident belief as strong as any religious fervor, a type of mania that says that anyone who disagrees with the “official” interpretation of the future must be destroyed. Reputations must be ruined, jail and prison time served, voices silenced. There’s even a label for these terrible, terrible people—deniers.

The end of the world is big business. Fear is big business. But neither of these even begin to rival the grandeur that is power and control over people’s lives. Control of what they can eat, what they can drink, what they can see, hear, and think. No matter what the problem—whether real or imagined—the solution is always the same: Give us power over you and we will make it all better.

“After all, our ideas are so good that they must be made mandatory,” they tell us.

From global cooling, to global warming, to climate change (all catastrophic of course, all man-made don’t-you-know) the solution is always the same. More power to the government and the global elites that know better, all for the price of your freedom and prosperity. The song –acid rain, holes in the ozone layer, global cooling, global warming, climate change, shifting weather patterns–morphs as reality intrudes and proves the faithful wrong, but, not unlike the snake-oil salesman who has the same magical cure for all, the solution is always the same. Unlike the snake-oil salesmen, however, the oracles of freedom- and prosperity-destroying ideas, global power grabs, and bad science, don’t get run out of town. They don’t get tarred and feathered. They get tenure and fame and success. They get political backing. They become essential tools (yes, that’s a double entendre) wielded by the powerful.

It is with these thoughts churning in my head, that I wrote a short story called “Dolus Magnus: The Great Hoax” for Superversive Press’s upcoming anthology, MAGA: 2020 & Beyond. It is the story of a young scientist’s crisis of faith, about the price and cost of speaking out against consensus, about…

Purgamentum init, exit purgamentum—garbage in, garbage out.”

MAGA: 2020 & Beyond will be released on Nov. 8th, 2017, exactly one year after Donald Trump’s election. It is available now for pre-order HERE.

 

 

 

My first post at superversivesf.com

Check out my first post for the wonderful people at Superversive SF.

Hard Sci-fi Made Me Cry

Tired of the remakes, the reboots, the “let’s see how much more blood we can squeeze out of this turnip” output of today’s Hollywood? I think you’ll find Passengers a refreshing change.