*disclaimer – I started typing this up as a random Facebook post, then thought it’d be better as a blog post. It’s not really well thought out, but then again, but is on my blog? What follows is a stream of crap that poured from my fingers. Hope it intrigues some of you at least a little bit 😉 *
I’ve be toying with a “theory” for awhile about the big obsession with post-apocalyptic and dystopic fiction/movies/etc. Why the obsession? At least, what is it aside from the fact that many of us, myself included, like to see a bleak future where shit’s gone wrong or where we’re living under a government that has total control over us?
These types of books have been around for a long time, a hundred years (and more if you want to get technical). But we’re very obsessed with it now and seem to not really pay much attention to the older examples. My theory is that it has something to do with all the “Armageddon” scares since the turn of the century (so cool to say that by the way). Y2k was the start and I think the only BIG scare that we thought might actually bring about the end of the world. The other notable one is the 2012 shindig, though that was really taken as a joke.
I don’t think we really saw Y2k as a joke. MANY people prepared. Much of the world debated it and what it’d mean on Jan 1st. And even if those who are old than me are saying “well, we really weren’t too worried about it” (which is totally plausible)…I was 11 for Y2k. Many writers of the fiction in question: around the same age. Could our young minds have been influenced by this? I feel it’s plausible. Even though I wasn’t too worried I wouldn’t see 1/1/2000, and my family wasn’t either, we were prepared at least slightly just in case (but then again, it was the winter and we’re always prepared for being snowed in or having a power outage…wasn’t much different).
What am I getting at? I don’t know really. It’s just a thought that’s been running through my head for a while. Y2k was the start of something for many of us (or at least myself). For me, it was the only “serious” end of the world scare. And I don’t know about many of you, but I’m one of those sick bastards that thing it’d be cool to experience something like that. That might be because normal everyday life isn’t my thing. And no, I’m not expecting zombies. I think there are many more probable ways the world as we know it will end, haha, and probably will in the not “too” distant future, even if it’s not our lifetimes.
What I’m really getting at…not really, but it’s another reason for this post…is that I’m wondering if there’s any books out there with Y2k at it’s center? I have a book that fits in it. It’s a cyber-thriller I think. I tried reading it once, but wasn’t into it at the time.
Something that sparked this post was that I’m currently reading an ARC of Rebecca Makkai’s The Hundred-Year House. The first part of the book is set in 1999. Y2k is only the obsession of one of the characters and doesn’t play a major role in the story, but it’s there and it reminded me that this thing happened in the world though I don’t know how much it’s brought up with all the world’s current problems. It let me be a little nostalgic, even if it was about my 11 year old self.
Even if there aren’t (post-)apocalyptic/dystopian fiction out there dealing with Y2k, maybe there’s more general fiction (like Makkai’s) in which Y2k is prominent. I’d love to hear some suggestions. Also, just in general some that fit the genre without Y2k that you LOVE. It’s not like I don’t have enough of those on my TBR, but if you LOVE them, share them. Things always slip through the cracks (so no Hunger Games…we ALL know about that already 😛 )