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Wednesday, June 30, 2010


I just ate enough Chinese food for a family of three. No, seriously. The Chinese food guy stuck multiple fortune cookies in my bag. Like he just ASSUMED ordering a large sesame chicken, 9 steamed dumplings, crab rangoon, and a pint of fried rice would be a FAMILY meal, not an INDIVIDUAL meal.

I'm hurt by his lack of faith in my gorging abilities.

Anyhoo, whilst I was eating all that gelatinous, fried, steamed goodness, it got me thinking. Of all the fortune cookies I opened (and believe me, there were quite a few), none of the fortunes were at all helpful. I think one of them said something about having integrity or shining like the stars or something that was surely inspiring, as you can see by my vivid memory of it. And that got me thinking about fortunes in general, and the future, and how we, as mere mortals, are constantly trying to figure stuff out.

That's why I love dystopian/post-apocalyptic. Reading it and writing it. I love seeing what other people think could happen, and how they get to those conclusions. Sometimes they're frighteningly oh-my-god-that-SO-COULD-HAPPEN, and sometimes they're more wow-I-hope-that-really-DOES-happen-cuz-even-though-it's-stupidly-dangerous-it'd-be-downright-SWEET. (okay, that last link was more alternate-history/steampunk than dyst/post-apoc, but you get my point.) And, in some weird way, I like being "prepared." I like reading these books and thinking "Okay, now I know how to survive if everyone gets turned into zombies and I get stuck in a psycho-religious fenced-in cult," or "Okay, now I know what to do to avoid really, really pissing off the powers-that-be if my society goes apeshit-crazy and starts restructuring everyone's bodies when they hit 16," or "Okay, now I know how to deal with a society that freaks out about sex-choice and other crazy things" (agency-sister love! Yay Julia!). Call me crazy, but I'd rather be safe than sorry.

There really was no point to this post other than to give some love to the dyst/post-apoc genre. Just finished my first dyst (WHITE LIKE ASHES) and I have two more in the works. Me thinks this might be my new favorite genre of choice. Fortunes are FASCINATING, and I love that it's still possible. Fantasy is all well and good, but I love that one day the worlds we imagine in dyst/post-apoc could BE our world. That is beyond cool to me.

God, I love Chinese food.


rebel_of_nowhere said...

Dystopian novels and fortune cookies, two of my favorite things :D

Unknown said...

and all I have to say to that is, "YES." :)

Now I'm hungry for Chinese.

Tricia J. O'Brien said...

Ha! That's a fantastic post. I love your one-liners on the dystopian preparadness. :D

And, I think we should write our own fortunes. They'd be far better than what comes in those cookies. I once saw a recipe for making the cookies and thought it would be fun to do and give them to friends with weird fortunes inside.

Anonymous said...

Dystopian (or sci-fi) novels are definitely my new love, mostly because, yes, it really could happen. And that's scary. And fascinating, as well.

Sara Raasch said...

Tricia -- I actually knew someone in middle school who made fortune cookies and brought them in to class. Another kid didn't know they were fortune cookies and ate one, paper and all. I wonder if his fortune was "You will have indigestion."

Kathryn Rose said...

Oh, I love post-apolyptic stuff. So deliciously eerie! Cool links too, btw!

The same thing happened to me: I was ordering Japanese food and once I got done placing my (ahem) lunch order, they said "So, for about three people, right?"


"Uh, no, just me."

ali cross said...

That was awesome. Very funny ~ just what I needed! Thanks Sara!

Dara said...

It's funny because my sis and I were thinking about writing a dystopian novel (although it's probably mostly myself pushing it, LOL). I don't know if I could do it though...I'm so used to writing historical/historical fantasy, it's hard to break out of that genre mold.