Billion Man Rapture – Chapter One Rewritten

Chapter 1

There is a sudden disturbance originating from China that has many around the world panicking. What happened? And how do the world leaders respond to the situation? Continue reading

Facebook is the suburbs while Twitter is the city

An eloquent expression on the difference between Facebook and Twitter. Have a read!

Boulder Colorado Voter Guide - Eric Budd

Social networks enable varied forms of interaction between their users, through spectrums of openness, hierarchy, and discovery. Facebook and Twitter are the most used services to connect people socially, but bring people together in surprisingly different ways. Facebook’s strengths rely on easily connecting with established networks, showing highlights, and sharing meta-actions (like posting pictures or events). Twitter’s advantages lie in instant communication, building ad-hoc networks, and providing public and widely accessible information.

Why compare social networks to geographical networks? I’ll argue that the same openness, hierarchy, and discovery also applies to suburbs and the city, greatly affecting our modes of relationship. Suburbs span a large area, creating both silos of community and a greater privacy. Suburbs aren’t great for meeting people, but they do provide a framework for connecting disjointed entities to a center.

In comparison, cities move quickly and connect people through greater density. People gather at the local events…

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On ‘Billion Man Rapture’

This blog post is in relation to a novel I am working on called ‘Billion Man Rapture’. You can read the pilot chapter here.

So the inspiration for ‘Billion Man Rapture’ came while watching Skyfall. I was watching the Shanghai scenes, and due to a series of mental mixups and jailbreaks, the idea dawned on me. Remember the scene where James Bond was following the assassin? Well, somehowI got the impression that James Bond was in the same car as the assassin in the backseat, kinda like if the assassin was his taxi driver or something. Don’t laugh! I was tired! Anyway, after I realized how absurd my notion was, especially given that James Bond – a secret agent I assure you – is always ID’d by his targets as soon as he is seen, I started to think, ‘Would China even allow foreign taxi drivers?’ So I’m also noticing how, to me, unrealistically empty Shanghai seemed to be, and that thought ran head-on into my question about China and taxi drivers. ‘Maybe they have foreign taxi drivers because Shanghai doesn’t have any Chinese…wait…what?’ An idea was born.

The idea is of great interest to me because of something that would be hard for any human in the world to ignore: China has managed to become something like an MVP of countries. It reminds me of a meme I saw floating around on the Internet, ‘In the Beginning, God made the Heaven and the Earth. The rest was Made in China.’ So I started to imagine what would happen if China suddenly became a non-factor because all its inhabitants just disappeared into thin air. I wasn’t even concerned about the perpetrators behind the phenomenon. Many books could be written solely on the premise that the world suddenly lost its second (many predict it will be the largest in a few years) economy. What the hell would happen to humanity as we know it?

As I started to think of all the possible consequences, I realized just how deep this story could be, and admittedly I wanted to take an easy way out. I was thinking, what if I posted the scenario and got the opinions of different people. But no. I say I want to be a writer and I have a premise that  has so much material I could write about. Of course it’s a work of fiction (at one point I was actually considering writing a paper on the subject…still considering it) so I don’t want it to read like a thesis. I haven’t decided yet what format I will follow for working on the idea. I’ve thought of novellas, episodic content, a big novel. I decided to write a ‘pilot’ chapter to get some feedback; I am nowhere near pleased with what I’ve posted.

Some of the questions that could be asked are:

How do humans, both individually and as a whole, deal with the disappearance of 1 billion plus people? This would be a totally illogical event to us. Do we go batshit crazy?

How do we respond to the fact that there are millions of square kilometers of land left open for exploitation?

What happens to all the weaponry that was left there unguarded, just waiting to be carted away by anybody?

Who did it? Why? Does it even make sense to fight them? Now this question I may take quite a while to answer. There are quite a few angles to the story that could be told aren’t there?

Any help that can be given to me would be much appreciated. Thanks in advance guys!