*with apologies to Limp Bizkit
Tip of the Day: My library won the area's Library of the Year award! Click here for details! Thanks to everyone who nominated Brighton Memorial Library. You rock!
I just read a YA book where:
--the main character is under house arrest on and off over her life
--phone lines are government controlled, only available intermittently, and rarely available for international calls
--the internet is highly monitored and all modems must be registered with the government
--outsiders are often forbidden from entering the country, and citizens are often not allowed out
--those who sneak information about the country/government outside the borders and are caught are subjected to imprisonment, physical torture, and death
--those participating in peaceful protests against the government are subjected to imprisonment, physical torture, and death
--disease runs rampant
--citizens are poor and powerless to overcome their situations
--the government spends millions on its lavish capital while the citizens starve in the other cities
--elections are rigged
Is this the latest dystopian novel on the shelves at B&N?
Nope. It's not even fiction. It's the story of Burma in the 1980s-present as presented in CHAMPIONS OF FREEDOM: AUNG SAN SUU KYI by Sherry O'Keefe (Morgan Reynolds, 2012).
I read this book to review it for VOYA, knowing nothing about Suu Kyi or Burma when I picked it up. I reached the end where the author compared Suu Kyi's world to that of George Orwell's 1984, I thought, holy crap. This horrific reality IS real for so many people across the globe.
So the next time you want to write about a government-controlled world but you keep hearing that dystopian fiction is overdone (I'm definitely reaching "full" on my library shelves), pick a country where this issue is a reality. Write about the real world -- even if we wish it was not so. I would totally read and buy those books.
Will I write them? I was very inspired by Suu Kyi's story, but would need to do a ton more research about a country that I just touched upon. Perhaps some day. Until then, I want to read more. Get writing! :)
Deena, Miss Subbing for Pubbing