Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Narrative Warfare: Turning It On Its Head

I'm talking about the telling of a story wherein one of the themes is the use of rhetorical systems of emotional manipulation to control and manipulate targeted populations. In other words, a story featuring Narrative Warfare as a major theme. Like it or not, but it is a fact acknowledge since the Ancient World that some people cannot be taught (the requirement for effective use of Dialectic) and so one who would persuade them must do so via their emotions, and that is where a great and terrible power resides. It is why Homer put the poet over the priest in importance, a sentiment echoed later by Plato and Aristotle.

If you want a challenge as an author, write a story about Narrative Warfare.

I've got a manuscript that takes up this very challenge, but I am at the point where I need an editor; I am at the limit of my skill, and I know enough about my skill to recognize that I know what I don't know about what I can do, but I lack the means to engage one. (Yes, this is necessary, and I don't know if I can successfully beg for the means via crowd-funding.)

It has been done, successfully, but it is usually in the form of a comedy about U.S. Presidential campaign shenanigans. The (as of this post) upcoming Sandra Bullock comedy, Our Brand Is Crisis, is the most recent version but there have been dramatic works that addressed this matter in the past. (Network is the most notable example in popular media.) As such, most successful work of this sort doesn't go far into the realm of fantastic genre fiction; even Marvel's stuff that leans that way remains with one foot firmly in reality.

However, the further away from the real world one goes in fictional media, the less likely one is to find an effective--nevermind successful--work that addresses the matter despite using all of the tools and working with all of the tropes. (Just look for people inspired by, saying, Tolkien's The Lord of the Rings.) I intend to fix that, and I encourage others to make the attempt. Science Fiction and Fantasy, in particular, are well-equipped to take up and master this challenge.

Fiction creates mythology. Mythology explains the world.

That is why Narrative Warfare works. Its foundation is its use of Mankind's acumen at storytelling to create mythologies--false ones, but effective nonetheless--in order to create a false world (a paradigm) through which they can and do manipulate us. By defining what is real, they gaslight us, and if we cannot defend ourselves and defy that fraudulent mythology, they get their mind control through their information control. Show me that story, put into a SF/F context, and then tell me a fucking good story. Do that, and you will have not only a hit but a classic on your hands.

That's why I'm going for it.

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