How ‘Escape from the Future’ Highlights Our Surreal Present

Think about waking up after a 60-year nap and seeing a society the place “largely peaceable” riots have been the norm.
Paul Clayton did simply that, however with a twist.
The prolific author’s new guide, “Escape from the Future And Other Stories” makes use of science fiction to each interact and warn readers about developments that demand extra consideration. The guide’s predominant story follows a time-traveling household, however different tales contact on hard-Left activism and Id politics gone wild.
The principle story within the guide, “Escape from the Future,” follows a ’60s-era household who wind up in 2020 America, warts and all.
HiT reached out to Clayton to study extra concerning the guide, how he tackled a typical drawback within the tradition and his frustrations with Conservative, Inc.
HiT: The principle story in “Escape from the Future” seems at at the moment’s society from a curious lens, a household time-traveling to the current. Are you able to share the way you got here up with that system to showcase simply how far we’ve fallen, culturally talking?
Clayton: I’ve used ‘time journey’ to beat the “frog within the slowly boiling pot” phenomenon. Younger People don’t have any perspective on how a lot the tradition in America has modified. That comes with age.
However many older People don’t see it as a result of the tempo of cultural change is so gradual. To beat that, I’ve used time journey as a “quick forwarding system.” I feel it has labored nicely in my tales. 
By the best way, I’ve used the ‘time journey’ system in “Van Ripplewink: You Can’t Go Home Again.” In that work, Van, a highschool senior within the yr 1966, wakes up in a coffin in a area in 2015 Philadelphia.
The guide explored race relations in post-Ferguson America. It acquired a pleasant constructive evaluation within the Smoky Mountain News. I feel it’s one in every of my finest books, however race relations are a mine area for writers, publishers and reviewers.
Few dare to go there. I did, however the guide, like my others that delve into sociological realms, languishes within the nice Amazon Sea.
In that guide, Van makes his method house solely to find that his outdated neighborhood, lengthy an Irish American enclave, is now predominantly black, with a small minority of Vietnamese boat individuals refugees.
You possibly can think about how triggered woke liberals can be by one thing like that.
HiT: The core characters in “Escape” have a tough time processing how horrible fashionable life turned out. Why don’t you suppose extra individuals, irrespective of their ideological bent, really feel an analogous method? And are there establishments who’re partly accountable right here?
Clayton: I feel that the majority People, those with perspective and historic reminiscence, know at a deep subliminal degree, that one thing shouldn’t be proper on this nation. They in all probability suspect that a lot of our leaders are corrupt to the core, in hock to overseas powers, like China.
They know that the tradition has “modified,” with what have been as soon as taboo sexual practices, now being “normalized.” They know that the tradition is being bastardized, that America is dropping its as soon as honorable and principled luster.
However they’re in denial. I do know a few of them. They’re afraid to dive deeply into what lies beneath all the traditional distraction of day by day life. And, to reply the second a part of your query, sure, there are establishments accountable. Authorities for one. Geriatric senators and congress representatives. Lots of them on psychotropic medication. Lots of them on the payroll of overseas powers, like China.
The schooling institution for one more, hijacked by activist instructor unions and their sexual activist members. And ‘the press.’ That features information organizations, and satellite tv for pc and broadcast TV.
HiT: ‘Human Exclusion Zone’ provides a slick peek on the close to future … are you able to share the way you look forward whereas maintaining a tally of present tech realities?
Clayton: Effectively, that story is predicated on present developments (inexperienced theology, socialism) and on human nature. Human nature, in fact, by no means modifications. In order that’s a given.
And if we now not put our religion and belief in a better energy, God, we’re placing our religion and belief in man, in humankind, and humankind is flawed to the core.
HiT: ‘Zone’ provides its personal cautionary story, nevertheless it’s one rooted in fashionable activism. Did anybody occasion encourage the story’s twist/idea?
Clayton: This story simply confirmed up in my head at some point. I let it marinate in there for a yr or two.
Its genesis in all probability got here from the day by day headlines concerning the unending makes an attempt by the Left to demonize conventional households, suburbs, inner combustion vehicles—dumb ones that can not be turned on and off from afar by inexperienced authorities bureaucrats—and to herd everybody into excessive rise hives with crowded, harmful public transportation.
And as everyone knows, there are loads of people who now care extra about saving the whales, canine, cats and wolves than they do human infants.
The Left, particularly ignorant younger Lefties, have a fanatical religion within the new world they’re busy constructing. You possibly can see that of their spiritual devotion to ‘inexperienced,’ their hatred of custom.
They ignore any dependable competing know-how, like pure gasoline turbines, nuclear reactors and attainable future fusion reactor know-how, and any cautionary proof towards a purely inexperienced tradition, like the boundaries of our present power grid, the boundaries of photo voltaic panels, windmills and present battery know-how, power storage limits.
These limits, if thrown a wild card by nature—as when the Texas grid went down attributable to excessive chilly and lack of wind or sunshine—could cause main disruptions and lack of life. However, try to inform that to some younger green-believer.
HiT: It’s not arduous to suss out your politics from the guide, however the tales are persistently partaking and brisk. Speak concerning the steadiness between sending a message and never making the reader bludgeoned by the method.
Clayton: Effectively, it’s all within the wrist. That’s, the artwork of story. Drama. Tradition. That factor that the Proper appears to put so little significance on. By the best way, the guide I wrote earlier than “Escape…” known as, “Crossing Over,” appears to be getting some traction.
That’s as a result of the subject material—a attainable 2nd American civil struggle—appears to be on loads of peoples’ minds now. In that guide I’ve taken a contemporary, however conventional household, and put them in the midst of what may go down, huge chaos and crime, individuals trying to flee the cities for havens of security.
Anyway, if a author creates a sensible fictive world by “exhibiting,” the reader will, for probably the most half, go alongside for the experience and be affected. Like a virus, a heretical concept or meme will take root deep down inside. This is the reason the Left literati shun works like mine.
HiT: Why is science fiction, and horror, so efficient with social commentary?
Clayton: It permits the reader to chill out’ and lay down their defenses towards having their world view attacked; in spite of everything, it’s science “fiction,” story that would occur, however in all probability gained’t (at the very least that’s what we inform ourselves).
It’s not actual.
If the story was informed in a recent setting, the reader could be trying round and saying, “no, I don’t agree with that,” or “that’s probably not what’s occurring”… as a result of they’ve been programmed by the ABC/NBC/CBS/MSNBC/CNN/CIA media to consider a sure method and have a look at all the things that contradicts that as “conspiracy idea.”
However in a sci-fi setting, underneath the comforting veil of “story,” the reader permits, or entertains, concepts that they usually wouldn’t. I feel the method solely works if the story and the storytelling is vivid and compelling, and that’s what I try and do.
HiT: Horror has been inundated with socially conscious tales of late, nevertheless it’s all the time from one path — the Left. Are you conscious of any TV exhibits or movies that flip the script right here, showcasing freedom-friendly tales or warnings of a socialist rebellion?
Clayton: The one which involves thoughts is the “My Son Hunter” film. However I can’t actually consider any others. And that is the place I get indignant, as a result of I feel that the conservative facet, the Proper, offers lip service to Andrew Breitbart’s on-point statement that “Politics is downstream from tradition.”
Yeah, all of them say it, however only a few (I don’t know of any, besides your self) truly “dwell that” or “try this.”
The Left owns publishing. They’ve fully taken it over. The Proper has a number of conservative publishing homes, however they appear to deal with 500-page tomes by Sean Hannity or Ann Coulter promoting for $29.99.
These books are usually not tradition; they’re politics, and as such is not going to be purchased and browse by younger individuals, is not going to change any minds. Novels, quick tales, films, performs… these are “tradition,” and the Proper ignores them.
They’ve deserted the cultural battlefield, leaving it to the Left and their steady of man-hating, progressive, indignant minority, and sexual pervert authors and their tales.
Woke acquisition editors at publishing homes and woke literary brokers brazenly state that they don’t seem to be taken with any works by white male authors, particularly Christian, straight, or conventional ones.

(a buddy who’s a literary agent informed me that he can’t even get editors to learn first novels by younger white male writers, irrespective of how good; they’re simply not . that is heartbreaking for writers who might, the truth is, be sensible, & vital of their very own “privilege.”)
— Joyce Carol Oates (@JoyceCarolOates) July 24, 2022

I’ve reached out to the Proper, conservative media, through the years, sending emails, snail mails, sending books via the mails, sending gifted ebooks, nearly begging for a learn and a point out.
Certainly one of my books truly made it to former presidential candidate, Pat Buchanan’s kitchen desk. He informed me he would learn it when he completed his present writing mission. By no means heard a phrase again.
I’ve pinged the parents at Fox Information, sending emails, letters, books… You’ll suppose they’d be taken with an excellent conservative novel. In any case, it appears as if everybody at Fox is writing and pitching a guide–histories, canine books, cookbooks.
However I’ve by no means gotten something again. Simply radio silence.
I’ve thought rather a lot about this, as to why, and I’ve come to a few attainable conclusions, however I’ll hold them to myself, as I don’t wish to burn any bridges. I’ll simply say that I’m deeply, deeply upset in “conservative pundits and media varieties.”
Picture by StockSnap from Pixabay

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