I've just returned from grocery shopping. There were two little mishaps - I parked the car, got out, realized I'd left my cash at home. Then after I'd gone home and gotten the cash walked up to the supermarket I found there was not a single shopping trolley. Aside from these two little mishaps, the grocery shopping experience was uneventful. I found many items marked down on sale that I could freeze for another day. Stocked up on loads of goodies for the pantry. All in all, an uneventful, same old, everyday occurrence that millions of us take for granted.
I paid $150 for food that will be eaten in a week, perhaps scorned at, critiqued, not eaten, devoured hungrily, most importantly, taken for granted that all this will happen again next week. No wonder I see food shopping as pointless and boring. And if I find it boring and pointless, I'm sure there are other who do too.
We no longer have to fight or hunt for our food. All the tribal, primal, animalistic components have been cauterized, homogenized, and organized. No wonder dystopian novels are so popular. Characters have to fight for food, there's often the kill or be killed mentality, pushing others aside for the last scraps of food and water. Humanity is stripped away and we have to fight to keep it. In the modern world, there is no need to fight.
Just to treat you to the types of books I'm talking about there is a fantastic site called The Best Sci Fi Books. I recently found this post from September 2014 highlighting 96 Dystopian Science Fiction Books that are all on my must read list. I've read a few, and I must say I love dystopian worlds. And I think I know why. Our blessed lives lack the life or death challenges, they lack the hunt, the hunger, the fight for survival.
Don't get me wrong. I'm not saying I want world war to break out and coupons to become a way of life. I don't want to fear for my life as I make a cup of tea. Nor do I want to eat stale crackers and spoiled food.
But our love of dystopian fiction makes me wonder that perhaps we humans like the idea of chaos in our lives, to remind us that while we have evolved, we are still of flesh and blood.
Saturday, 16 April 2016
Why are dystopian books so popular?
D L Richardson is the author of the Welcome to the Apocalypse trilogy, the Shivers series, and 3 young adult paranormal books. She is currently writing a new sci-fi series Earth Quarantined. She grew up on sci-fi TV classics such as Lost in Space, Space 1999, Bionic Woman. Most of the movies she watched as a kid were on TV, and the first sci-fi movie she saw in a cinema was Return of the Jedi. She’s also a fan of classic horror movies such as Evil Dead and Hellraiser. She used to watch these on VHS as a teen with her friends when she was meant to be doing homework. Books are known to spill out of every available space in her home. TWo of her favorite authors are Dean Koontz and Anne Rice. Her favorite book is The Hobbit. When she's not writing, she can be found wandering in her yard waging war on weeds, watching back-to-back episodes on Netflix, playing her piano or guitar, curled up on the couch reading a book, or walking the dog.