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ALTERNATIVE TRUTHS was released on April 26, 2017.
Just in time for President Trump's 100th day in office, B Cubed Press presents Alternative Truths, an anthology of 24 science fiction and fantasy stories that take "a look at the post-election America that is, or will be, or could be." The book was being released by Amazon on April 26, 2017. It is $11 for a paperback copy or $4.99 for a Kindle version. The editors are Bob Brown and Phyllis Irene Radford. The book surprised everyone by jumping to the top of the best seller lists almost immediately after publication.
There are 24 stories in Alternative Truths, and 24 authors.
Alternative Truths has stories by:
- Jim Wright of Stonekettle Station
- award-winning author Adam-Troy Castro
- novice (but briilliant!) fiction writer Diana Hauer
- musician and award-winning novelist Louise Marley
- novelist and editor Irene Radford
- Canadian author/journalist Gregg Chamberlain
- writer and teacher Sara Codair
- journalist/blogger K. G. Anderson
- film critic and author Daniel M. Kimmel
- poet and short story writer Janka Hobbs
- Canadian civil servant Bruno Lombardi
- Victor D. Phillips
- Larry Hodges
- agriculturalist Bobby Lee Featherston
- SF/F writer Blaze Ward
- Joel Ewy
- SF author and critic Marleen S. Barr
- Ken Staley
- Welsh author Wondra Vanian
- London author Liam Hogan
- SF/F author Voss Foster
- Rebecca McFarland Kyle
- Paula Hammond
- Susan Murrie Macdonald.
Donald Trump, 45th President of the United States
As I've said before, I do not consider Donald J. Trump fit to hold the office of president. I blogged about the CREATE Initiative as a way for non-politicians to do something about DJT. I am not alone in my opinions, nor in my attempt at a solution.
“To announce that there must be no criticism of the President, or that we are to stand by the President, right or wrong, is not only unpatriotic and servile, but is morally treasonable to the American public.” Teddy Roosevelt
Bob Brown and Phyllis Irene Radford had a dream. They had a vision of how they, as writers, could do something about President Trump.
Alternative Truths Anthology was formed, when on February 23, 2017, I, and many of my friends, asked what we could do. We could write, we could join that noble tradition of using the pen, to poke the powerful.
So was born, Alternative Truths. And our pens became word processors and our ideas became stories.
Kellyanne Conway was not the first political operative to applying flexibility to truth. But she gave us the best ever description of the premise when she coined the phrase, “Alternative Facts,” in describing what George Orwell had for all previous generations labeled as New Speak.
Like beauty, truth, especially political truth, is in the eye of the beholder, and for years Americans have tolerated the common elements of exaggeration and rhetoric from their politicians. But not since the early days of the nation has such a mockery of truth been made in the name of politics, and in that vein we present to you, Alternative Truths.
Alternative Truths is a look at the post election America that is, or will be, or could be. We attach no manacles to the word truth to bind it to our visions, but instead we free it to find its own way through the minds of the two dozen writers who have shared their vision of the future in either sensitively written allegorical tales such as Relics by Louise Marley, a woman who grew up bucking hay in Montana to a talented musical performer and successful novelist, or the raw humor of Adam Troy-Castro in his Q & A, which takes on the verbal veracity of Donald J. Trump.
Whomever or what ever you like you will find here with an absolute appreciation for the fact that we live in a great country where you can still publish a book like this, in part to the continued efforts of the American Civil Liberties Union. To paraphrase Thomas Jefferson, the tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the ink of patriots.
And patriots these writers are, for they speak truth to power, and do so in the public square. And they do so because of the Constitution of these United States and the vigilance of groups like the ACLU. Because of this, we are treating the ACLU as a part of this work and a writer’s share of the royalties will be donated to their unending quest for the freedom of the American People to express themselves.
Phyllis Irene Radford and Bob Brown,
Editors, Alternative Truths
Bob Brown and Phyllis Irene Radford went looking for writers. They found dozens, possibly hundreds, but in the end, chose only twenty-four writers. I am honored to be one of those twenty-four writers. I am also glad that Bob found this link for me, explaining why none of us are likely to be successfully sued for libel.
Three things to remember
Here are three things you must remember:
- The pen is mightier than the sword.
- Many snowflakes can combine together to form a blizzard or an avalanche.
- Comedy is a traditional weapon against politicians.
Alternative Truths has thirty-one reviews on Amazon. (Dare I risk the pun thirty-wonderful?)
First review on the paperback
DISCLAIMER: I received an ARC(advanced review copy)
This collection of short stories all deal with what a Trump presidency might mean to everyone in the United States. Some are humorous, like Lincoln's Gettysburg address as if Mr. Trump had said it instead of Lincoln, to the serious, like a mistreated immigrant dreaming of summer pinwheels. This is a group of stories best taken in small doses in order to digest what you read and recover from the strong emotions these stories provoke. If you too where shocked and dismayed on November 8, 2016, this anthology was written for you.
First review on the e-book:
I originally got the book as Kindle Unlimited. I haven't read all the stories in it yet, but I've already bought it to keep. (I also originally got the book because I follow two of the authors on FB - Jim Wright and Adam Troy Castro.) Jim's contribution I'd read before - The Gettysburg Address as interpreted by Donald Trump. That alone is worth the price. The other contributions were all new to me. I haven't been disappointed by any of them. There are fairy tales (A reinterpretation of Hans Christian Andersen's Nightingale), stock sci-fi, hopeless dystopia and hopeful dystopia. A tale of a third generation Muslim Indian coming home after work has a heartening surprise twist. It's so easy to get bogged down by the unrelenting 24 hour news cycle. Really great fiction, even if it is about the current circus of our times, is a great escape. This is a great escape.
My favorite review:
Alternative Truths is a delightful anthology of political satire. Put together in Trump’s first 100 days from inception to publication, it has achieved far more positive things than the misbegotten administration. The stories range from the comic relief and wish fulfillment to frightening, dramatic stories of where Trump’s ICE and other agencies could take us in an almost worst scenario. Headlines, such as the park service going rogue and the army possibly going against American citizens, seem to have sparked Blaze Ward’s imagination, and the result is “The Last Ranger (ANPS -1, CE 2053),” a story about a young man who wants to be a Forest Ranger, not a soldier, but circumstances pits him against Trump’s vision of an army. Louis Marley’s “Relics: a Fable,” provides moving dystopian view of where we may be going with so much love and humanity that it hurts. Alternative Truths mixes more light-hearted stories with the doom. Diana Hauer’s “The Trumperor and the Nightingale,” is a fairy tale, with all the bad parts that make the good parts better. In “As Prophesied of Old,” by Susan Murrie Macdonald, Trump visits Great Britain (Queen Elizabeth II should read this one), and while the lowliest lowly in Parliament are called on to comment, someone shakes off the dirt and… no spoilers. Adam-Troy Castro’s “Q&A,” and Jim Wright’s “President Trump, Gettysburg, November 19, 1863” provide many good laughs and guffaws as they use Trump’s own words in these gems of snark and satire. There are many other good stories, but what fun would that be for you if I summarized this smart book like Trump did the deed? Read it and enjoy. It’s time from Radford and Brown to do the next 100 days. Smart, witty stories are going to help us get through this.
Remember, to an author, reviews are love. If you read and liked this book (or any other book), review it on Amazon or Goodreads. It really does help. You don't need to write an essay. Just a few words "fun book" or "I liked it" can make more difference than you realize.
Alternative Truths has two dozen stories. Think of Art Buchwald, Ray Bradbury, Robert A. Heinlein, and Patricia Wrede mixed together, and you might get an idea of the sort of stories you'll find in Alternative Truths. There are parodies and parables, silly stories and serious stories and some downright scary stories. Most are science fiction; a few are fantasy. You'll find ghosts, demons, aliens, time travelers, and talking animals. You'll find several stories that would have made excellent Twilight Zone episodes.
What would happen to healthcare if Donald Trump remained president? Read Sara Codair's "Melanoma America."
What would happen if he actually built the border wall? Read Louise Marley's "Relics."
George Orwell said, “He who controls the past controls the future. He who controls the present controls the past.” What if Trump's administration and his heirs took that literally? Read Voss Foster's "The History Book."
What would one of Donald Trump's heroes think of what he's done? Read Bobby Lee Featherston's "The Frame."
What if the government were willing to go to any lengths to hide their mistakes? Read Ken Staley's "Raid at 817 Maple Street" and Rebecca McFarland Kyle's "We're Still Here."
What if there were only one park ranger left? Read Blaze Ward's "The Last Ranger."
Journalist Rick Dunham described Trump's presidency as "a flickering journey to the first circle of Hell, sort of Kafka meets Dante by way of Orwell." In the forward to Alternative Truths, Dunham says:
Philosophers may be despairing, but fiction writers are not. After all, it's just one step from Kellyanne Conway's "alternative facts" to "alternative history," such as MacKinlay Kantor's 1961 If the South Had Won the Civil War, or Sinclair Lewis' 1935 warning of a fascist takeover of America, It Can't Happen Here. Well, Donald Trump's election did happen here, and this anthology uses it as a jumping off point to give some of America's most creative science fiction writers an opportunity to conceive of their own alternative history scenarios.
Rebecca McFarland Kyle
Rebecca McFarland Kyle said on Facebook: "Just finished a read-through. To say the very least, I was gobsmacked. This is an amazing collection of stories with powerful themes and visceral verbiage. It's an honor to be part of this group."
This is the second time Becky Kyle and I have been in an anthology together. We also both had stories in Supernatural Colorado, from WolfSinger Press. And as one of the assistant proofreaders as well as one of the authors, I've read every story in the anthology at least twice. I agree with her wholeheartedly. It's an honor to have my work in this volume.
Here's the snowflake for her story, "We're Still Here."
As Prophesied of Old
My story is a short fantasy. It's the fifth story in the book, and focuses on one of our allies dealing with a president who is both "unpresidented" and unpresidential. My snowflake is below.
The Trumperor and the Nightingale
Diana Hauer wrote a beautifully witty story, based on the fairy tale by Hans Christian Andersen. It's a tale told with humor, but filled with hope.
The Last Ranger (ANPS-1, CE 2053)
Remember the memes on Facebook about park rangers being the leaders of the revolution? Blaze Ward wrote a story called "The Last Ranger (ANPS-1, CE 2053)." Here's his snowflake.