Providence published, “What You Should Know About Wakanda,” last week, providing a backgrounder of the fictional nation that is home to the Black Panther.
And last March, Providence published a rather in-depth review of the movie, Logan, entitling it, “An Ode to Men of a Violent Mold: Logan, a review.”
Both Black Panther and Logan are, of course, based on comic books. But they are high-profile movies and there are some legitimate national security angles at which to review them. So it’s understandable why foreign policy journals highlight them.
But my fiction regularly features real (or close to real) foreign policy or national security issues. It also often deals with contemporary cultural issues, and features Christian themes or undertones even when not explicitly stated.
For instance, my earliest stories set in the universe of Mortal Gods (Mortal Gods: Ignition) feature all of the above in their plots or themes. The first tale in the anthology, “Like Hail and Fire, Mixed with Blood” focuses on a spy who slowly realizes his nation might face serious consequences for a covert attack it conducted. But can he get anyone on his own side to believe him and watch out for it? And in, “The First Transgender Superhuman,” decaying national security prompts the protagonists to use a prominent cultural issue to instigate a counterattack. Finally, “Warrior,” is a raw look at war in its most brutal and primitive form.
A subsequent (and free) Mortal Gods serial story is titled, “HVT,” and goes in a different direction than the three stories of, Mortal Gods: Ignition. “HVT” is a tiny bit of forecasting through fiction. It uses a fun story about a superhuman tasked with taking down a high-value target to also tease how advances in technology might enable future warfare. (Or it at least seriously examines how warfare might unfold in the reality of that universe.)
And then there is my latest fiction; the contributions I made to, Appalling Stories: 13 Tales of Social Injustice. Some of the stories don’t have anything to do with foreign policy or national security. But, Mortal Gods: “Presidential Pardon,” and, “Our Diversity Is Our Strength!” certainly do (with “Our Diversity Is Our Strength!” being a contemporary war story where an American soldier discovers the enemy isn’t the only thing he has to worry about fighting).
So I’m happy that Providence reviewed Black Panther and Logan. I hope more foreign policy and national security publications and organizations take an increased interest in fiction. Fiction can be valuable for forecasting and analysis. My fiction often is. And even when it isn’t, it’s always entertaining.