Tuesday, 1 January 2008

To Tom Clancy - a modest proposal

Hi, Tom.

I have to admit it's been quite a while since I contributed to your pocket. I got through The Bear and the Dragon back in 2000, and sorta gave up after that. Quite frankly, it was that Rainbow Six novel where you set up as villians an organised bunch of radical anarchist environmental scientists burrowing into academia as a means to true power.

Suspense of disbelief, dude.

I see it's been a while since you wrote anything under your own steam, and I can understand that. With the collapse of the USSR and China rapidly turning into capitalism-sans-merci, it's difficult to find good antagonists for your tales. the great thing about writing about the Cold War and WWII is that Commies and Nazis make excellent enemies.

But, you know, fascism doesn't just involve a guy with a mustache marching through Poland. I wonder if you've considered the literary possibilities of modern fascism, the sort that comes with a cross rather than a swastika?

I mean, consider the possibilities of a Dominionist takeover of the US government as a setting for a story. You'd be able to pit real Americans, including actual Christians, against people who meet all the criteria as fascists. You'd be able to go back to the wide-level techno-thrillers by setting up a civil war - say, the West Coast vs the rest. No more of this lame stuff involving hi-tech warriors against peasants with AK47s - both parties would have state of the art equipment and training. Hell, you could set it with a takeover in 2012 or 2016 and avoid too much of the sci-fi element that might put off your fan-base.

Okay, so it's not probable, but it's a damned sight more plausible than your last attempts to torture politics to provide a good story. Think about it, will you - you were a good writer once.

No comments: