October Surprise

squirrelDoom is in the air this fall. Wait…wasn’t it in the air last year?…and the year before that?

It seems as though Autumn is the “doom” time of year. Perhaps humans have coexisted with the rise and fall of seasons for so long now that we sense the death and destruction that comes with winter on an almost instinctual level. Isn’t it possible that we transpose this sense of impending doom onto our world view. That is to say, our perception may have a built in doom filter this time of the year.

Going hand in hand with sense of impending doom is our nesting, preparation tendency that seems to come forth in the fall. Our harvest is in and it is time to secure and preserve our resources for the long winter. As much as we’d like to believe that we exist apart from nature, we are clearly “hardwired” to our environment in more ways than we realize.

Of course, this could all be learned behavior, instilled in us from our childhood. How many of us watched our mothers pickling, canning, freezing and preserving the bounty of the summer’s garden? My mother always likened fall preparation to squirrels burying nuts for the winter, hence the term “squirrelling away” in my family.

No doubt, these nesting behaviors have been passed down many generations and it is most likely the reason that we are alive today. It wasn’t that long ago when the seemingly simple task of eating involved a great deal of planning and effort. Dinner wasn’t a simple matter of going to the nearest grocery store or restaurant for our predecessors.

Once again this fall we are hearing the term “October Surprise” all over the mainstream media and through a lot of alternative sources as well. While the term has its roots in the idea that newly released information could influence a US November presidential election, it has taken on a broader meaning in recent years to include all types of devastating scenarios ranging from economic collapse to World War 3.

Not to understate this particularly chaotic and tumultuous time in history, but having witnessed a few periods of doom frenzy, I’m not convinced that this upcoming period is any different. My sense is that a large scale events occur when we least expect them. Then again, who knows? More than likely we will have some time left to enjoy our strange apocalyptic preoccupation. Speaking of which, I have a few guest posts coming up that I’m sure you will enjoy! 

t2fire

Calling All Apocalyptic Bloggers, Writers and Enthusiasts!

helpwantedCalling all apocalyptic bloggers and writers!

Doomers unite!

Write a guest post for us about your favorite apocalyptic fiction and we will add you to our blogroll and you can post all of your contact and website information along with your article. That includes all of your social media links.

Ideally, your post would be about 500 words and would be related to some work of apocalyptic fiction that you are passionate about. It could also be some type of fiction that inspired you to be more “prepared” for large scale disasters, wars and that type of thing.

Additionally, if you are an author, you could write an article about your book, what inspired you, that sort of thing. Naturally, you could link to your book, interviews, whatever is pertinent. 

Please reply to this post or contact me at apocalypticfiction@gmail.com or through Twitter @apocalypticfict . Thanks!

Divide and Conquer

Divide and conquer. An organization of any type is greatly weakened when it is divided. When a group of people, whatever size, does not share a common goal, cohesiveness is lost. Logically, an enemy seeks to further divide such a group by emphasizing differences and minimizing similarities.divide_conquer-228x228

Consider the simple concept of divide and conquer when applied to the current situation in the US. With so many so called “leaks” emerging during this presidential election, it seems likely that the public is under the spell of a massive manipulation effort on a scope that has never been seen before in history. 

This is truly a “can’t see the forest for the trees” moment in history. While the identity of the attacker is unclear (at least to most of us), it seems obvious that an ongoing effort of some type is underway. A divide and conquer strategy has been implemented. Using the tools of this “networked” age, a steady stream of manipulative information is sent to our smart devices for consumption.

Perhaps this is a strange post for an apocalyptic fiction web site but it occurred to me that the early stages of World War 3 might be a bit more subtle than we anticipated.

 

Fear the Walking Dead

Some Walking Dead fans have been slow to warm up to the spin off Fear the Walking Dead that is now approaching the end of its second season. After all, how many countless hours have we logged following Rick and his crew of survivors. I must admit though, approaching the end of Season 2, the show has grown on me.fearthewalkingdead

Initially, I was drawn to the show to discover the details about how the zombie apocalypse started, supposedly in Los Angeles. That aspect was somewhat disappointing since it basically happened the same way everywhere else (one zombie…two zombies…million zombies). We don’t get much in the way of details, except we see how the military attempted to create “safe zones” then was forced to bomb most of the cities in a last ditch effort to stem the tide of zombies.

Fear the Walking Dead (FTWD) has a sort of dreamlike quality that has kept me watching. Though it is hard to pinpoint, the characters seem to float through the scenery as if they are a part of your own zombie apocalypse nightmare.

Taking place mostly in Mexico, Season 2 has unique cultural and religious aspects that create a certain tone and atmosphere that set it apart from its southern US counterpart and main franchise, The Walking Dead. Actually, we find a completely different perspective in Mexico as we see a more religious/biblical interpretation of the zombies. A type of superstitious attitude prevails where the survivors see the zombies as a way for god to cleanse the Earth.

It takes more time to become engrossed in FTWD compared to the original. I remember how I was hooked after I watched the first episode where Rick wakes up from a coma in the hospital to find the zombie apocalypse. The impact of that first episode in the original series was awesome in a way that I think would be impossible to duplicate.

FTWD may have a ways to go before it could come close to replacing the original, but it certainly is a fun show to watch while we are awaiting the main event.

 

Reminders

“The Fire is coming! Get to the shelter!” The basement shelter vaguely resembles some places where I have lived but always expands into a much larger and more complex space. Looking through a small window, just above ground level, I can see the fire rolling over land, engulfing everything in its path. More vivid and detailed than the best Hollywood cgi effects, the image is etched into my mind. I can hear someone yelling, telling me to get back from the window but I am transfixed. Just as I begin to wake up to leave this place I begin to consider the implications of ‘radiation’ in some type of ‘mental’ image.

Dreams of the apocalypse have haunted me for as long as I can remember. After a fairly significant hiatus from apocalyptic type fiction (as is reflected in the obvious neglect of this site), I’m back here pondering the significance of my horribly vivid dreamworld. The dreams serve as reminders of some type. 

Rationally, who would want to willingly fuel a dark preoccupation with the end of civilization and death with fictional depictions of such? It is as if I am seeking out some meaning in the expressive imaginations of other people.

Certainly, one could argue that the apocalyptic entertainment that I have fed my brain over the years rattles around up there and is occasionally expressed in dreams. But how did I have these types of dreams before I was ever even exposed to the concept? 

Collective subconscious, archetypal imprints? I really don’t know. I suppose I’ll just throw it to the internet wasteland, the pyramids of our age that will disappear into thin air leaving no trace for archeologists of the next great civilization. How many different incarnations on Earth alone? Unknowable, at least at my pitiful level of awareness.

It’s Not the End of the World Yet…

Well, it’s been a busy year and I wanted to write a quick post regarding my intention to resume activity on this site. I’ve been preoccupied with a couple of other projects and just ‘staying afloat’, in general, but I am going to make an effort to get caught up on my reading list and reviews. I apologize to those of you that have been waiting for me to review your books and will pick up where I left off. 

Fortunately, it’s not the end of the world yet, so we likely have more time to enjoy this twisted apocalyptic preoccupation. From the recent ebola scare to the ‘saber rattling’ that is reminiscent of the Cold War era, we’ve seen plenty of ‘real world’ activity that will continue to fuel a strong demand for apocalypse related fiction. Keep the review requests coming!

All Roads Lead to Terminus

The Walking Dead

Follow the yellow…err…corpse littered railroad tracks to Terminus. Our ragtag group of exhausted survivors carry on down the tracks in the final episodes of Season 4 of The Walking Dead. Is Terminus real? Is it a trap? We get some answers but other questions arise as we follow these apocalyptic hobos. In a dead, haunted world, are the living really the ghosts? It’s going to be a long wait until next October. Check out the Season 4 now: