Each Tuesday, rather than a POSSIBLY IRRITATING ESSAY, I'd like to both challenge you and lend a helping hand. I generate more speculative and teen story ideas than I can ever use. My family rolls its collective eyes when I say, "Hang on a second! I just have to write down this idea..." Here, I'll include the initial inspiration (quote, website, podcast, etc) and then a thought or two that came to mind. These will simply be seeds -- plant, nurture, fertilize, chemically treat, irradiate, test or stress them as you see fit. I only ask if you let me know if anything comes of them.
SF Trope: alien invasion
Current Event: http://moneyland.time.com/2011/08/16/paul-krugman-an-alien-invasion-could-fix-the-economy/
So – alien invasion as a US stimulus package?
Can there be a more prosaic use of an alien threat? Certainly it’s been thought through before – the interview references “an old Twilight Zone” episode…(the fact is that it’s an old OUTER LIMITS episode called “Architects of Fear” in which a physicist agrees to undergo major surgery to “become an alien” in order to scare Earth’s people into joining together to fight it).
World peace I can understand.
But an alien invasion to make it possible for WalMart to expand to the African Sahel? Alien invasion to balance the investment portfolios of the half of Congress who are registered millionaires?
But let’s just say that aliens are as greedy, self-centered and money-grubbing as Humans. And let’s just say that ALSO have a bit of an altruistic streak. So they “invade” Earth, apparently causing massive destruction…in the Sahara; in the Outback; in the Himalayas; at the bottom of the Pacific (nowhere IMPORTANT – except for the aboriginals, researchers and hermits who live in those places. Certainly nowhere, like, that anyone cares about!)
The rich and famous figure they’re “in the know” and that the “invasion” is a ploy to bring about “world peace”. A kid lives with one of those families. He IS a child of privilege. He also knows he might rebel against the wealth. He also loathes the idea of being predictable. So once he hears his parents and their friends and his friends ridiculing the mass hysteria, he decides to find out the truth for himself...