I love dystopic fiction. I love it even better when it is good dystopic fiction, which is becoming rarer, as the market is absolutely flooded with it right now.
In the past two weeks, I’ve read two excellent examples from the post-apocalyptic genre. One, Ender’s Game, is from 1985, and was post-apocalyptic before post-apocalyptic was even a thing. Back then, it was all science fiction, with none of this silliness about sub-genres. It’s a cornerstone of the science fiction genre, and after reading it, I can see why. There is just enough heart to offset the “Dear god in heaven, why are they making these little kids fight each other OMG THEY’RE GOING TO KILL EACH OTHER!”
It’s an intense ride, folks.
The other, Divergent, is new, only published in 2011, but shares a lot of the same elements. a school where they pit teenagers against one another to teach them to fight and survive, heavy rivalries that often end in tragedy, and corruption in the higher ranks. It’s clear Veronica Roth has read Ender’s Game at least once.
Both are amazing books, and I highly recommend them both, but what I found most interesting was this: As I delve into the science fiction genre, it amazes me to see where authors have borrowed, pruned, and found inspiration in other authors. Tiny references and homages find their way into modern writing, sometimes in ways so subtle that you have to wonder if the authors themselves are even aware of doing it. It makes me want to go through my own writing and see where I myself have borrowed and been inspired.
Do you have any authors you take literary inspiration from?