The 25th issue of Shousetsu Bang*Bang is out. The theme was 25 Rooms and I chose a modular housing unit. This factors into the story only a bit, I’m afraid, but I was pleased that I could at least work it in some, as this was the story that I swore I would go off-theme to write if I had to.
The story is ApocalyptiCon, or It’s Not The End of The World, and I really love how it turned out. Admittedly, I originally envisioned a funny convention romp and what I got instead is a by turns snarky and hopeful convention romp. I’m learning that I cannot write comedy plots. I think I don’t believe in funny things happening; I only believe in funny responses to unfunny things.
For the previous issue, historical stories, I had planned to do something about the Japanese internment during WWII, but my mind rebelled at the no-fantasy rule for the issue and I just never quite came up with anything. But I had been doing research in preparation for that since the beginning of the year. Some of the outrage brought up by that definitely leaked into this story. A mishmash of current immigration arguments did as well. I will be the first to admit that I am not particularly well-informed on the political front, but there are, I believe, some things that a person should just know are not right. Some things are born only out of the ugly parts of humanity. Some things must not be acceptable ever. /soapbox
But in there with the anger is also a lot of love for pop culture conventions and the good memories I have from them. I’ve been attending Anime Expo for seven years (though not this year, which makes me cry) and went to San Diego Comic-Con for the first time last year. I love fandom and I love being in a room full of people just fanning all over the place. I love the undignified passion and the weirdness and the disregard for normal behavior. I love to see a hall full to the point of bursting with people who care THAT MUCH about, let us remember, FICTION. Fake stuff. Lies. Stories. I think convention attendance should be mandatory for all professional tellers of stories. Because until you understand conventions, I don’t think you really understand your audience. Not, at least, the people who will be dedicated enough to make your career for you out of their dedication. But I digress.
ApoC came from all this. I am, as I said, really happy with it. I hope everyone enjoys it.