I love ingenious stories about the unpredictable future. Particularly a utopia that is temporarily challenged by unexpected changes. This what I write. I like to ultimately bring the stories back around to a positive outcome. I write utopic stories because I’ve grown tired of dystopia novels and movies. While there is something to be learned from them and I have over the years enjoyed reading the plethora that exists in the literary world, there is no balance, nothing to give humanity another possible way of seeing the future. No imagination that speaks to a more positive and harmonious existence.
Why can’t we begin to truly express our creativity and write a future where humans have learned how to live symbiotically and in balance? Why can’t we imagine the challenge is to fight to maintain a utopia rather than having to fight to destroy a dystopia? How is it that so many writers lack the creative prowess (or desire) to envision utopias that make for interesting stories?
One of the most pivotal works of science fiction about a utopian society that I’ve read is Looking Backward: 2000-1887 by Edward Bellamy written in 1888. This tremendous work had such a profound affect on Bellamy’s contemporaries that “Bellamy Clubs” also termed, “Nationalist Clubs” began to spread throughout the country. The function of these clubs was to attempt to bring to fruition Bellamy’s vision of a better world.
Bellamy accomplished what few authors today are able to achieve—he imagined a better world, effectively constructed that world, then shared his vision in Looking Backward: 2000-1887. Some may argue that his ideas were imperfect and idealistic. But his ideas were viable and re-creatable without much disruption of the current system if appropriately implemented. Equality seems more attainable in Bellamy’s fictitious society and provides hope for those who are steeped in dystopia in fiction and film.
So I write about possible worlds; utopias. I try to create diverse methods of living that speak to the infinite nature of possibilities in this universe, or omni-verse. It is my hope that more authors will venture into writing utopian stories that challenge the characters to hold onto their free and equitable world. Let’s write about fighting to stay free, rather than fighting to become free. Write the world we want to keep, not the one we want to get rid of. Turn the tables on the literary landscape, shift the balance.
I want to show this new generation creative possibilities for a more viable social structure that would serve everyone. As it stands, most people today are only cognizant of what they don’t want, but have no sense of what they do want, or how to make what they might imagine a reality. It is my job as a writer to create that which the reader has never imagined before.
So, I write, and hope that my speculative ideas and words invite us into a new way of seeing. Maybe I can start a movement and a few clubs will open in honor of the possible future I create. Maybe others will join me in creating viable utopias we can all work toward. Maybe.
© zaji, 2016