Because stories have to make more sense than reality. Given this last year, we all know this; a worldwide pandemic caused by someone improperly cooking a bat in China? Waiting to impeach the worst president in US history when he isn’t the elected president anymore? Those are 2 implausible plot lines that would be very hard to make convincing. Fiction has to be much more believable than real life.
This has always been true but nowadays it is getting more and more obvious. The old stories we were told, and told to ourselves about who we are and how things work are crumbling as I am writing and you are reading this blog. And while there are people who bang on about ‘your reality’ and ‘my reality’, most of us still believe that there is a reality out there somewhere. Stories have to follow that rule even when reality does not.
Hausa Blue is set 100 years after the Russian Revolution of 1917 in a world where it never happened. The geopolitical shock waves that it produced never happened either. I do not really think that history would have played out the way it does in my story. But that doesn’t matter because it is an alternative reality that has the advantage of being openly made up. If you buy a hard copy, and you want to find it again, you will put it on your fiction shelves.
The story is with some kind people who have agreed to let me know where it needs improving and will not be ready until April 2021. While you are waiting may I suggest that you read ‘The Infernal Desire Machines of DR Hoffman’ by Angela Carter. I am not quite ready to move my copy onto my non-fiction shelves, but it is only January.
In the meantime, I will be writing blog posts and playing with making little films to help stop marketing from sending me properly mad. However, if any state would like to employ my narrative skills for the script of the public information film ‘How to Cook your Bat', I will make my self available.