From: Mike Glosson
Location: San Diego
Decided I wasn't quite ready to drown in Durrell's prose again, so dived into FORGE OF GOD early last week, first read in nearly two decades.
Reading this again after such a long time, I keep seeing this as the Penultimate Diaster Movie...a Genre that has almost died out for Film, other than those Asteroid Impact films of what...a decade ago.
Couple with the Sociology of "End Times" reactions actually encountering real end times...something that didn't strike me on the first read back after initial publication.
So I am going to share with you what I've shared with a few other Writers I correspond with out there, who have End Times/End of the World fictions out there that have become a little dated:
With a slight retooling, and it's yet another election year, The Forge of God could tap into the 2012 minor culture fugue going on.
2012: THE FORGE OF GOD.
But would you have to fictionalize the President, as I don't think Obama would react the way your President did in late '96...though Biden might.
And the only way he would become President would be....
The only thing I'm finding dated on this read is the Existentce of the Soviet Union in '96...but back in '86/'87 who would have believed that in a few short years "The Evil Empire" as Ronnie used to call it would start to rip itself apart?
Back on the first read Hick's accessing various paid services and "Elite" BBSes in '96 was pretty keen, and seemed to be the way things were going...the internet for everyone was just about to happen in '97.
And reading this novel, 13-12 years after the events in it were set to happpen, I'm naturally thinking about what I was doing on the days of major events in that book.
The one thing that spooked me, on this read, was the introduction of Reuben on November 20th, in a house where his Mom had died 3 weeks before. In my personal time line, November 20th '96 was the day after my Mom died.
Harry's futile fight with cancer starts about the same time my Mom's cancer returned for it's final and fatal run.
When I was living 1996, I'd completely forgotten about the time line/table of this book, it being 8 years from the only read at that point.
I'd forgotten the Silver Spiders and the Guest, but had remembered the "Bullets" and the Von Neuman's on the Ocean Trenches, buidling H-Bombs and releasing vast amounts of Oxygen into the ocean, frothing the surface.
All I had remembered of the Yosemite sections was it's "Launch" into space, lot the long lead up of those who went there to wait for "It" to happen.
But, with some slight updates, this would make a good "End of the World" flick for 2012...
From: Bill Goodwin
Location: Los Angeles, CA
The world DID end twelve-plus years ago. The silver spiders supressed the memory in a few of us and patched us into a simulation to give us time to adjust. The collapse of the virtual USSR, and 9/11, were tests to establish our current adaptation-profiles. Conclusion? More time needed, before our latent knowledge of evil empires and intrusive calamities is allowed to surface. Start softening up our concept of Yosemite by putting it under the direction of a Japanese corporation...
Mayans and Gregorians should've hammered this thing out better. 2112 is the obvious year, not 2012. Then the solstice catastrophe could fall on 12-21-2112 (my 152nd birthday, as it happens). I'm just Asperger's-ish enough for this to bother me.
From: Greg Bear
Rats! Now the spider is out of the bag. Don't start counting its legs, however...