Goodreads asked Jay Allan:

Where did you get the idea for your most recent book?

Jay Allan As I write this I am about to release book 2 of my Portal Wars series. While there are a number of themes, the original notion was that an Earth government secretly provoked a war with an alien race after first contact with the intention of using the resulting fear to consolidate control over the population.

I see too much of this in the news every day, where people ignore the erosion of freedom because they are scared of terrorism or crime, without realizing the drive they took down to Florida with the kids last year was 50 times as likely to hurt them as a terrorist attack.

This isn't a left or right thing; it's just human nature. But when someone buys my book, or heads over to Barnes and Noble and browses the shelves, I don't think they realize how rare a thing this has been in history. It's easy to take something for granted when you've had it all your life, but that doesn't mean you can't lose it. That's especially true for me as an author, since I can look ahead a century or two and speculate not how it affects us, but how it turns out for our grandchildren and great-grandchildren.

I write a lot of military SF, so I also cover a lot of the soldier's perspective. Soldiers are very often sent to bad places, sometimes without the support or flexibility they need to win or even survive. I was a child when the Vietnam War ended, but I am still struck by how badly many veterans were treated, especially considering they were mostly 18 and 19 year old kids who were drafted and didn't have much choice.

Most of my books have a heavy dystopian slant, probably because I think it's more important to look at what could go wrong in the future if we let it than to fantasize about utopian futures that are unlikely to occur.

My primary intent with any book is to make it an interesting and enjoyable story that my readers will like. But if someone gets the notion from my books that maybe they should pay a little more attention to ways their freedom is slipping away, that's a plus for me.

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