…we're keeping our name but expanding our offerings!
Hi! We’re Lisa Henry and M. Caspian, the authors of FALLOUT. We’re touring the web talking about our influences, our processes, anything we can think about actually, and even giving you guys a sneak peek or two! And what would a blog tour be without a contest? Check out the details at the bottom of the post to see what you can win!
Today M. Caspian talks about the end of the world.
The first television program I remember watching as a child is a British show called The Survivors. In it a virus is released and destroys 99% of the world’s population, the remainder of whom get to rebuild the world. Sure, there’s pillaging and off-screen rape, but the survivors get to ride horses everywhere, which as far as eight-year-old me was concerned meant I was all for societal destruction. The second show was Space 1999, in which a nuclear explosion on the moon sends the moonbase residents on a one-way trip through the galaxy and into the future (they’re both on YouTube now.) Add in the 1980s Cold War, and what seemed like every third film produced in the 1990s, and my love for a good apocalypse still knows no bounds. (Also, six words: Dead Island, Xbox 360; play it.)
The Western obsession with the End of the World As We Know It reflects an incredible tension between two states; knowing our society will never fundamentally change, and feeling like things are so terrible surely they can’t last. Cultural theorist Slavoj Žižek asked, “How come it is easier for us to imagine the end of all life on earth — an asteroid hitting the planet — than a modest change in our economic order?”
We end up living with an unbearable pressure. Part of us desires a do-over to defuse the relentless threats of climate change, peak oil, terrorist actions by law enforcement against the public they should in theory protect, debt burden, capital inequity, environmental degradation, and systemic racism. The other part of us craves predictability: that we can wake up tomorrow and it’s pretty much exactly like today. We want to know that we can make plans for our schooling and jobs and family, and we can carry out these plans without disruption.
Living an apocalypse second-hand is cathartic. We can pick our vicarious cultural death — zombie apocalypse, alien invasion, asteroid collision, global virus, volcanic super-eruption — and yet still wake up in our warm beds tomorrow and insert a single-serve coffee pod before we telecommute with our MacBook Air.
At the same time, at the back of our minds, we acknowledge that for some people the apocalypse already happened: the medieval peasants who survived the Black Death; the genocide of Mesoamericans, North American first nation people, Australian aboriginals, and the New Zealand Maori; the destruction of the Minoan civilization. Sometimes the worst really does happen.
The word apocalypse comes from the Greek apoca-lypsis, laying bare, or making naked. An apocalypse lifts the veil of everyday life from our eyes. It’s a Ctrl-Alt-Delete that allows us to see what truly matters. Not your paycheck, not your mortgage, not your belongings, but the people whose lives touch yours. So in FALLOUT that’s what we tried to do. We didn’t write a global vision of an apocalypse. We wrote a disaster you see intimately through the eyes of two men who have one truth suddenly laid bare to them; that they love each other.
High-school boyfriends Jack Haldane and Bastian Wade thought everything would be perfect once they reunited at college, putting disapproving parents and small-town attitudes firmly in the past. Now Jack’s on track for a PhD scholarship and a career as a researcher, and Bastian . . . well, living inside a broken body and trailing along in Jack’s shadow didn’t feature in his lofty teenage ambitions. A weekend camping trip back home offers a chance for them to reconnect, but an ugly confrontation with the local motorcycle gang is only the start of their problems. When disaster occurs and the world unravels, will Bastian and Jack manage to hold on to each other, or fall further apart as they try to survive?
Thanks for following our tour! To celebrate our release, we’re giving away a $20 Amazon gift voucher for you to spend on whatever you’d like. Hey, you should buy Fallout, I hear it’s pretty good!
All you have to do is leave a comment on this post with a way for us to contact you, be it your email, your twitter, or a link to your Facebook or Goodreads account. Please put your email in the body of the comment, not just in email section of the comment form, because we won’t be able to see it otherwise! On April 22, 2015, we’ll draw a winner from all eligible comments! Be sure to follow the whole tour, because the more comments you leave, the more chances you have to win the prize!