Only a few of these books were ever started, and of the ones I started, they’re all on hiatus. At one point many years ago, I drew covers for them with markers, and I hope the pictures are still around somewhere. I also have an old folder full of notes for all of these books. Thank God I only started writing one of them around the time I conceived of them, since my idiotic plan was to depict a society of single moms by choice in each and every single future book. In my juvenile 12-year-old mind, I truly believed planned single motherhood was the wave of the future, and that I’d be so famous and respected for “enlightening” the world with it. Little did I know that it wasn’t unheard of, even back in 1992, to go to the sperm bank and have kids without a husband.
The book I started first, and have written the most of on and off over the years, can be reworked a bit so the “Single moms are the majority and nuclear families are a small minority who suck and deserve to be mocked! Squee!” BS can cast the book as a dystopia, like Brave New World. It’s so striking how many similarities there are between the dystopian society of BNW and the future society I was drooling over. Both my future characters and the BNW characters think it’s funny and disgusting to actually be in love and have feelings for someone, though at least the BNW folks don’t think it’s disgusting to have a sexual relationship. I’m so nauseated at how the inciting incident for one of the books, Undersea World, is the protagonist’s biological father “turning sick.” In other words, he was caught having a relationship with a woman. Because, you know, God forbid someone might actually indulge normal, natural feelings instead of acting like it’s so gross and abnormal to have a relationship of any sort.
I was inspired to make a line of books in various future settings in the fifth grade, when my class was reading a book containing perhaps five short stories set in the future. I remember one was called “It’s a Beautiful Morning” and about a boy named Richard, who alarms almost everyone because he likes to walk places instead of being teleported. The first story was by Isaac Asimov, whom I’ve loved ever since. I wish I remembered the name of the story. It’s about a boy and a girl who find an old book in the attic and wonder what it is, since books no longer exist in their society. They’ve all been computerized, a rather eerie prediction of what’s happening now. (I was so floored awhile back when my fiancé actually asked me, “Who the hell is Isaac Asimov?” Even if you’re not into sci-fi, he’s just one of those names everyone is supposed to know!)
Some of the books and series I had planned are now scrapped, due to a combination of losing interest in them and the planned timeframes no longer being in the future. One of the books still has an interesting enough setting that I decided to move it to some time in the future. These are the books I still plan to get back to someday and write, and resist very hard the urge to make them into series:
Greentown (2023-26): Terri Wyatt, her young widowed mother, and her two sisters have made a good life for themselves in a thriving natural-minded Australian community that started as an experiment in 1982. They live in Beatleville, the largest town in the area. Terri enjoys living in a community where everyone highly regards Sixties music. But when she realizes many of the people around her are turning their love of these bands into a creepy kind of religious worship bordering on a cult, she knows she has to find a way to get out of this place that’s only a hippie paradise on the surface.
A Spacey Kind of Fun (2050-53): Victoria Morrison is at first quite displeased when her mother uproots the family from their home in Bangor, Maine, and moves them to a new space colony near the Moon. But her upset is soon allayed by her super-cool new best friend Shelley, Shelley’s equally-cool young mother, and the excitement of living in such a pioneering community. But when the colony is bumped out of its gravity zone and starts hurtling through space, Victoria, her friends, and her family find themselves becoming pioneers in a whole new way.
Flying (originally planned for 1999-2003; now dates are TBD): The Williams family leaves their comfortable life on Earth for a new enclosing flying city.
Undersea World (2989-93): After Ghisolabella Cummings catches her father in bed with his mistress, her parents divorce and her mother moves Ghisolabella, her four siblings, and their dog Saturn from their comfortable Boston life to a new undersea community.
What Happened? (2999-3002): Seventeen-year-old Peony Pittsfield packs up her life in the BBM that is now the city of Chicago to become a “street missionary” to troubled young people in the floating city of New Chicago. (So many years later, I don’t remember what BBM even stands for, but I remember it’s like a city that grows up instead of around, and is inside an enclosed structure.)
What’s to Become of Us All? (3001-06): Thirteen-year-old Casey MacGregor is furious when her mother, acting only on a teenage psychic’s ridiculous prediction of World War III, moves her from St. Paul, Minnesota to a space station near Jupiter. Even after the prediction is revealed to be a fraud, her mother refuses to go back to Earth and Casey’s familiar, materialistic, American teen life. What makes the situation even worse is that her mother is planning to marry Casey’s biological father as soon as he reaches the space station with a permanent supply of air. Casey doesn’t know anybody with married parents! Everyone laughs at and openly discriminates against the small minority of Nuclears, whom she feels deserve terrible treatment for not being like the majority. And as if that’s not bad enough, she’s also stuck living with her mother’s foster twins Sara and Meredith, who think the world Casey comes from is out of touch with reality. Can Casey ever learn some valuable lessons in humility and come to appreciate that the entire world isn’t run the way America is? (The twins were initially called S.J. and M.J., at a time when I was just obsessed with initial names. I don’t even remember what their middle names are, but I know I don’t want to keep calling them M.J. and S.J. when I get back to work on this book. I was also big into kreatyv spylyngz when I started making notes for all these books.)
The Original Space Farmers (3555-maybe 3561): A group of people living in a unique religious community in Pocatello, Idaho, leave their old life behind and travel to the site of a planned space farm near Alpha Centauri. (These people are supposed to be the descendants of the young girl who’s the narrator of my long-aborted journal-form series starting in 1840 in Plymouth, Massachusetts, and moving to a pioneer community in Idaho. The girl runs away from home, gathers together her sweetheart and a bunch of relatives, and they cross all these thousands of miles in only a few months by wagon train. Yeah, right. The name for someone practicing the religion they start is called Neuligenie [hope I spelt it right]. It’s supposed to be pronounced like “New Religion-ee,” only the R is silent. It’s basically a create your own religion, taking whatever you like from any religion you want and mixing it all together as suits your fancy. Sounds like organized chaos now.)
Space Farm (5553-57): By now the space farm is well-established, and the space farming community is thriving. (I had a real fascination with farming at that age and wanted to be one myself. I was under the very naïve impression that as a farmer, I wouldn’t have to pay for anything, since I’d be growing all my own food!)
Ghost Planet (28,701-05): Most people now live in space, and only a few scattered families and communities still exist on Earth. The main family lives next door to a family who used to live on Pluto and who are planning to move back, meaning they’ll soon be the only living people for thousands of miles.
Escape from Great Dry Gulch (may be retitled Escape from Earth) (40,000,001,992-40,000,001,994): All the water on Earth has been dried up for the last ten billion years, and the Earth has narrowly escaped doom when the Sun turned into a Red Giant many eons ago. Everyone now lives under giant glass domes, with artificial water springs. When it’s discovered that the Earth’s water is going to come back in a huge gush, the people must get back onto the mainland in time. (I’m seriously thinking of restyling this one and making it about the people escaping from Earth in the time leading up to the Sun becoming a Red Giant. While I love the idea of having an opening scene showing the protagonist and her siblings looking up at the White Dwarf that used to be the Sun, in an eternally darkened sky, it’s just not scientifically accurate for all the water to just come back suddenly like that. It’s also debatable whether people in our current form will even still exist, or be living on Earth at all, that far into the future.)
Hazel’s World (85 trillion decktillion to 85 trillion decktillion five): My supposed descendant, Hazel M. the 98th, lives in an underground city deep beneath the Earth. The Sun has been gone for a staggering amount of time, and it’s not safe to go aboveground. Hazel decides to venture aboveground with some of the brave people who are making a new Sun and terraforming the barren Earth, and must decide what happens when the artificial Sun runs out. Will she stay and try to improve the situation, go back to her familiar life in the cave, or escape into space? (I actually had a few long-lost pages of this on printer paper from a dot matrix printer, with wide yellow sheets instead of normal-sized white ones. I wonder how many people of the current generation even know what a dot matrix printer is.)