My novel, Debris Dreams, takes place in the year 2068. That's 56 years. 56 years...you know, one of my beta readers said that that makes Debris Dreams "near future." This struck me as odd, but I can see the point. After all, if I'm lucky, I'll live to see 2068.
But on the other hand...
Take the gulf between the year 1914 and 1970. In that time, we've had two world wars, total economic collapse, a inverse economic revitalization, a radical explosion of technologies, a moon landing, terrorism, social upheaval, artistic revolutions, actual revolutions, failed invasions...this list could go on for a while, but I think you get the gist.
So, the question logically goes, what happens between 2012 and 2068?
That's what I'm working on as I wait for my next round of edits for Debris Dreams! Three interconnected short stories that chart the history of the DD universe from 2022 to 2068, each one starring a different side character from Debris Dreams itself.
And you, my loyal blog readers (all three of them) will get to read previews, snippits and general ramblings about them. Goodie!
By David Colby
Portia Brown stopped at the third checkpoint for the day and wished she had shot President Windrip when she had the chance. It was a petty, vindictive thought from a woman who prided herself in a lifetime of non-violence, and she tried to ignore it, even as a security mech stomped around her car. It was an odd mish-mash of old and new. New: Mechanized legs, controlled by a spliced in X-Box Kinetic mkVI scanner and operated with a nationalized OS poached out of Anon’s hands by the FSA’s netwar division. Old: Two ungainly looking Squad Automatic Weapons strapped to either side of the thing’s turreted head, a head that aimed directly at Portia’s car.
That came from an entirely too human FSA officer, wearing a bulletproof vest that looked like it had stopped a few rounds over the past week. He also had a taser at his hip and an assault rifle over his back and looked willing to use both at the first sign of trouble.
Portia kept her hands well above her head as she reached up and grabbed her papers from what had once been a holder for sunglasses. She held them out to the FSA officer, who took them and then walked over to the checkpoint scanner. He wasn’t paid to actually read the papers. That was a job that fell to the machine.
The mech kept it’s guns trained on Portia. She drummed her fingers on the wheel.
“Get ready for a surprise!”
Portia’s eyes widened as she looked at the mech, which had just spoke with a warbly, mechanical voice. The mech’s head tilted to the side and the SAW’s…sawed away, dust from the new case-less rounds hazing the air around the mech’s head. The FSA guard hit the deck and the people behind Portia in the checkpoint line screamed, several diving out of their cars to curl up on the ground. Portia herself screamed and screamed, she couldn’t help it.
The SAWs stopped firing, hissing and clicking as they cooled down. The mech turned and ran off, vanishing around the corner. Portia looked around, her ears ringing. None of the cars had been shredded. No blood spilled the San Franciscan streets, or dribbled down the steep hill that banked before the checkpoint. Even the FSA guard looked fine, picking himself up and brushing his hands over his armor. Dust had coated his body…and both he and Portia looked up at the same time, Portia craning her head to see out her car window.
Etched on the side of an old red brick building, blasted into the wall by hollow point, crowd stopper shells was a leering face with an exaggerated chin and narrowed eyes. Underneath it, cut into the stone by computer aimed bullets, were three words: U MAD BRO?