Peak Oil fiction
From my perusal of the stacks at Barnes & Noble, I have determined that the majority of fiction dealing with Peak Oil and the decline of modern civilization is about the violent social upheavals that are sure to follow the disappearance of convenience.
These narratives are about the widespread changes that will happen, the 10,000-foot view of things: cities in chaos, rioting, looting, governments falling apart, that sort of thing. Many of these stories serve as warning signs of the coming fall, demonstrating what it will be like (in the eyes of that author) or demonstrating the sorts of skills that will be useful in the post-oil future.
I am bored of being warned and made to feel bad about my lifestyle, but I am not bored of the post-oil world. So here’s my idea: Let’s use that situation as a true backdrop and not as the reason for the story.
Here’s my idea for a novel: A detective story set in a waning America, where the detective must solve the crime within the American justice system — which is still there — but without many modern conveniences: access to the Internet, unlimited travel, cellphones, electricity 24 hours a day.
I’m thinking a Maltese Falcon or Sam Spade sort of crime noir set in this future. The world may be falling apart around people and undergoing major changes, but life still must be lived and crimes must still be solved, so long as the city is paying the cops.
I’d be interested if any of you out there know of fiction that uses the Peak OIl world merely as a setting and not just as the impetus for the book itself. Let me know.