I'm a Cold War baby, so I grew up with the specter of nuclear annihilation as a very present (if unlikely and highly propagandized) danger. My schools had fallout shelters. I knew people -- zealots to be sure -- who had bomb shelters and evacuation plans. Put that feature of my childhood together with a nerdy passion for high fantasy and world building (Tolkein! LeGuin!) and I think I can explain the roots of my interest in future dystopian settings.
My most sustained effort has been my full-length novel SERVANT OF THE SEASONS. One of my early beta readers described it as a "post-apocalyptic sod-busting yarn" which is pretty accurate. I wanted to write the sort of bucolic pioneering or frontier adventure tales I'd loved as a kid (think Laura Ingalls Wilder or, sheepishly, James Fenimore Cooper), set in a post-apocalyptic landscape where the land has been deliberately ruined in an effort to oblige skilled workers to remain inside hermetic domes. The Maxwell Armfield images on this page get across the tone I sought, I think.
Here's the blurb:
When architect Mèco is turfed, or ejected from his protected but autocratic Dome, he finds himself adrift in a dying and dangerous land. With no choice but to scrape his survival from an abandoned farm, he tries to improve his prospects by acquiring an animal to pull his plow.
What he ends up with instead are two slaves, a bonded pair of Novigi, a strange people Mèco's never heard of. As the land slowly awakens by their combined efforts, so does Mèco's sense of himself as a man and maybe as a lover. But when their fragile home is threatened by brutal gangs of Salters, Mèco and his friends discover being servants of the seasons may not be enough to protect their new way of living and loving. They must become warriors.
It turns out I'm not the only Torquere author who loves imagining what might transpire after the world we're familiar with changes forever. Syd McGinley will be along later to share a bit about OUT OF THE WOODS and CB Conwy will share the HIMIKO series.
The three of us put together a prize package filled with essentials for surviving alien invasions, zombie apocalypses, or pear-shaped camping trips, including books! And duct tape! Comment on any of our posts today to be entered in a random drawing in a week's time. One entry per commenter per post.
I'll post a pic of the package later today. In the mean time, in SERVANT OF THE SEASONS Mèco and his lovers live in a sod house in a riverbank. They call it the turvy. Where would you live after the end?