Monday, September 18, 2017

A Disease Free Society - Real Vs. Fiction

Hi, Diane. Thanks for having me over on the release day for my book. It's about a disease-free society, and I'd like to share with your readers a post about what that might look like in reality.
My book, Black & White, looks at a society in which all disease has been eradicated. Of course, the caveat to this is that all dirt and illness has been transferred to a neighbouring country, whose residents exist in a primitive state with none of the refined privileges enjoyed by the citizens of Harmonia. But let’s pull it back for a minute and imagine a world in which all disease really had been eliminated. What would that look like and is it really something we would want?

Well, on the surface this looks like a no-brainer. Of course we’d love to banish cancer, dementia, AIDS and all the other pernicious conditions that steal our loved ones from us. On the other hand, there’s something to the idea that we need to get a little bit ill to stay healthy.

What? Well, we’ve all heard that we shouldn’t bombard our children with medications for a common cold every time they get a bit of a sniffle. It stops them from building up an immune system that would help them deal with anything more serious. OK, so those more serious things may have been eliminated, but imagine if some hitherto unknown, devastating disease was unleashed – perhaps as a weapon of war, developed and stockpiled by an unscrupulous government, or even carried here on a meteorite from outer space. We’d be utterly defenceless and the population would be decimated.
There’s also the question of the social impact and the resources available to go around. People are already living longer, and in our ideal world, everyone would live to a ripe old age, usually into their nineties or over a hundred. How to keep these old timers sustained without draining the Earth’s resources?

Here’s where things could get interesting. With the entire medical profession becoming something of a redundancy, those who previously worked in healthcare could channel their energies into other areas of science, and we could see sweeping changes and innovations brought by the availability of so much manpower. In Harmonia, all food is artificially produced and dispensed at the touch of a button. That means we wouldn’t be worrying about resources, but on the other hand the entire service sector – grocers, restaurants – would find itself out of business.

Of course, there are other types of resources to worry about as well, including fuel. It’s likely we would become entirely reliant on sustainable forms of energy, or we could see a return to smaller families of just one or two children. In Harmonia, the government has officially sanctioned only one child per family. It would be impossible to have more – the sexual act has been erased from our biology and this one government-approved child is created in a lab. Probably not an outcome anyone wants to see. It was claimed that this would make things fairer by discouraging competitiveness at an early age, but actually caused many of these children to become overly selfish and entitled.

So there’s lots of possibilities and outcomes to think about here, not all of them entirely positive. What about you? Would you want a world that was completely free of germs and disease?

Title: Black & White
Author: Nick Wilford
Genre: YA dystopian Series #: 1 of 3
Release date: 18th September 2017
Publisher: Superstar Peanut Publishing
What is the price paid for the creation of a perfect society?

In Whitopolis, a gleamingly white city of the future where illness has been eradicated, shock waves run through the populace when a bedraggled, dirt-stricken boy materialises in the main street. Led by government propaganda, most citizens shun him as a demon, except for Wellesbury Noon – a high school student the same age as the boy.

Upon befriending the boy, Wellesbury feels a connection that he can’t explain – as well as discovering that his new friend comes from a land that is stricken by disease and only has two weeks to live. Why do he and a girl named Ezmerelda Dontible appear to be the only ones who want to help?

As they dig deeper, everything they know is turned on its head – and a race to save one boy becomes a struggle to redeem humanity.
Purchase Links:
Buy links: Amazon US / Amazon UK / Smashwords / Barnes & Noble / Kobo / iBooks
Add it on Goodreads
Meet the author:
Nick Wilford is a writer and stay-at-home dad. Once a journalist, he now makes use of those early morning times when the house is quiet to explore the realms of fiction, with a little freelance editing and formatting thrown in. When not working he can usually be found spending time with his family or cleaning something. He has four short stories published in Writer’s Muse magazine. Nick is also the editor of Overcoming Adversity: An Anthology for Andrew. Visit him at his blog or connect with him on Twitter, GoodreadsFacebook or Amazon.
Enter the giveaway for a chance to win a copy of my collection A Change of Mind and Other Stories or a $10 giftcard! a Rafflecopter giveaway

I’d like to mention two other giveaways:

The Kindle Book Review Meet & Greet, featuring Dragon of the Stars by Alex J. Cavanaugh. Prizes include a Kindle Fire.
Dragon of the Stars by @alexjcavanaugh featured in @Kindlbookreview’s massive #giveaway Win a Kindle Fire

Goodreads Book Giveaway

Corners by Corrina Austin


by Corrina Austin

Giveaway ends September 25, 2017.
See the giveaway details at Goodreads.
Enter Giveaway


Pat Hatt said...

Great premise. Really gets you thinking. No sexual acts though? Damn, can't they just fix everyone so no babies can be made and let them go on their merry way? lol True, a lot of things would be rendered useless. You'd still need doctors for surgery maybe. That is probably why advancements come so slow in life, as you'd have a super backlash of people if their job suddenly became useless.

nashvillecats2 said...

A great post Diane and so interesting to read.
Have a good week.


Natalie Aguirre said...

Congrats on your new book, Nick. It sounds like a great story and one that will raise questions later for the readers to ponder--even better. Hope you have a good launch.

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Congratulations, Nick!
If we weren't prepared for disease, then it would be like War of the Worlds. One simple germ could wipe us all out.

Elizabeth Spann Craig said...

Very interesting concept! It sounds nice on the surface, but...

Alex makes a good point!

Nick Wilford said...

Pat - The government don't want people to have any fun!

Yvonne - Thanks!

Natalie - Thanks. Yeah, hopefully those questions linger.

Alex - Yeah, but they've rejiggered people's immune systems in case of that. That would be a great story though.

Elizabeth - No, it's not very nice under the surface. Thanks!

The Cynical Sailor said...

A disease free society is such an interesting idea for a novel. One of the things I found fascinating about your book. My allergies have been acting up, so I'd probably vote for a disease free society, minus all of the negative things that could entail. Cheers - Ellen

L. Diane Wolfe said...

Pat, fixing everyone sounds really totalarian, doesn't it?

Ellen, Kleenex?

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Hi Nick - sounds a good idea doesn't it ... til one thinks of the ramifications; what happens when the dirt society mixes with the clean society - Harmonia will die ... but very interesting to think about - well done .. cheers Hilary

Christine Rains said...

Congrats, Nick! I would like to wipe out some diseases like cancer and AIDS, but those smaller sicknesses keep us strong, I think. As I'm sitting here with bronchitis, I would love for it to be gone, though!

Chrys Fey said...

We all wish cancer and other devastating diseases didn't exist. The idea sounds great, but there would be many negatives. Fascinating concept. Congrats, Nick! said...

At first thought, sounds like a utopia. But when you consider all the repercussions - it's an intriguing concept.
Congratulations, Nick, on this very original book!

Liz A. said...

Just when you think a disease is eliminated, it pops up again. Then there are all sorts of things that you wouldn't see coming as reactions to this. Interesting to think about, though.

Sandra Cox said...

Wow, Nick, this story really is intriguing and makes one think. There are so many diseases I would like to see eradicated: Alzheimer's, Cancer, etc.

All sorts of giveaways today:)

Hi, Diane.

Nick Wilford said...

Ellen - Yeah, it would be very helpful if we could eliminate all the negatives.

Diane - Thanks for letting me take over today!

Hilary - Yeah, the government is very keen to keep them separate.

Christine - Getting rid of the biggies would be a massive deal.

Chrys - Thanks! A lot of unforeseen factors would crop up, I think.

Robyn - Yeah, it was meant to be a utopia, but doesn't quite work out that way.

Liz - It definitely is.

Sandra - Yeah, it would be great to get rid of those.

SpacerGuy said...

What about all those Ecolabs hand foam sanitize soaps in all the hospitals. The government wants us to be clean and free from illness and yet, Children growing up in the world are exposed to germs, good and bad. I'm confused, Nick. Duh, I just don't know now. I thought based on new research the germs were on our side...

L. Diane Wolfe said...

Sandra, they are coming out my ears! LOL

Spacer Guy, some germs are good.

H. R. Sinclair said...

I'd take a world without mosquitoes?! Congrats, Nick!

Karen Lange said...

Wishing you well, Nick. It's nice to see you here. Diane, thanks for hosting today. Have a great week!

Susan Gourley/Kelley said...

This is interesting. The elimination of disease is the underlying plot in my latest trilogy. I take more the medical/biology route of what could go wrong than the economic/social aspects. But of course, things go wrong.

Lynda Dietz said...

Everything we do has a ripple effect. Black & White sounds like a really cool exploration of that. Nice guest post!

Jemi Fraser said...

Very cool premise for the story! It seems like a weaponized virus could be powerful and devastating!

J.H. Moncrieff said...

Looks like a really interesting book! Hope it does well.

Thanks for sharing it with us, Diane and Nick.

Chemist Ken said...

Wow! Having a disease free society on the same planet as a country that does have disease sounds like a ticking clock. Anything that got through might sweep through the unprotected population. I could see why they would shun a stranger that appeared among them. Sounds like a great premise.

Good luck, Nick.

Darla M Sands said...

Great post! Since we could not survive without bacteria, and I don't see a way to banish the bad without harming the good, I think it's something we'll have to otherwise cope with. Interesting topic to consider.

Patricia Stoltey said...

What a fascinating premise for a novel -- I'm adding it to my TBR list. Population growth is already out of control, so eliminating disease or war could lead to a variety of unpleasant consequences. When China set their one child policy, too many families elected to terminate pregnancies if the child was female. As a result, the imbalance with too many young men and not enough young women disrupted their culture. Unintended consequences again...we can never foresee all of them.

L. Diane Wolfe said...

Holly, so would I.

Susan, of course they do.

Ken, I could see it happening.

Patricia, that's a really good point.

Nick Wilford said...

Spacer Guy - I agree that some germs are good, but in my world they genetically super boosted the immune system so no one can get ill at all - well, that's the idea.

H.R. - I could do without them!

Karen - Thanks!

Susan - Where would we be without things going wrong, eh? Your series sounds interesting.

Lynda - It definitely does. Thanks!

Jemi - It would!

J.H. - Thanks!

Ken - Yeah, he comes as a bit of a shock.

Darla - It does throw up a lot of questions.

Patricia - When the government tries to intervene in people's lives, it generally doesn't end well.

Sandra Cox said...

Kudos to Alex and Dancing Lemur. That's a big deal.

klahanie said...

Hi humans, Diane and Nick,

Nick's one of my favourite human writers. Hearty congrats on your new book, Nick. A creation of a pawfect society, indeed!

I shall take the liberty of sharing this pawst! Oh and thanks for the other two mentions, Human, Diane.

Pawsitive wishes,

Penny 🐶

New Release Books said...

Interesting post, Diane.
Thank you for sharing!

Anonymous said...

Hi Diane!

What a great premise, Nick. It's not so black and white after all.

Enjoy the rest of your week!

DMS said...

This sounds like such an interesting concept. Wishing Nick the best of luck! :)

Maurice Mitchell said...

That's an interesting approach to a dystopian world. I can imagine disease does serve a useful function in the world, but I wouldn't miss the flu. Thanks for hosting L. Diane

M Pax said...

Major congrats to Nick! Cool story. I need to read it.

Nick Wilford said...

Sandra - It is!

Penny - Thanks for the pawsitivity!

New Release Books - Thanks!

Elsie - No, it isn't! Thanks.

Jess - Thank you!

Maurice - I think we'll always have illness in some form.

Mary - Thanks! said...

Congrats, Nick! Very intriguing premise.

Sherry Ellis said...

I read Nick's book. It's a good read. On the surface, it seems that a disease-free society would be good. But we need to have a well-developed immune system . Things can mutate, and if we aren't exposed to germs, then we'd never have a chance against those mutations.

Melissa Sugar said...

Love your new book, Nick. The concept is fabulous. I just bought it and can't wait to start reading it tonight. Congrats. Thanks Diane.

Tyrean Martinson said...

I just re-read your book, Nick, and I think you've done some exciting and intriguing things with this premise. It's so easy to want to say yes to being free of disease, illness, and many other troubles. However, I know that I view my mother-in-law as a heroic survivor because she has overcome cancer four different times (each time after she thought she was past any resurgence and each time she had to re-do chemo and radiation). She is a rock solid survivor - and she didn't give up chocolate chip cookie dough or pizza to do it, which is something she used to point out regularly. Would I know how heroic she is if she hadn't endured such hardship or survived such struggle? I don't know. I would like to think I would know, but ... all of my life I have put a great deal of emphasis on endurance and perseverance - both traits that come from adversity.

Michelle Wallace said...

Nick's story sounds great!
I wish that I could snag a hardcopy from somewhere for my students...sounds like a story they would enjoy.

Sandra Cox said...

The weapon of war could too scarily be true.
Again, I find this storyline very intriguing, Nick.

Hi, Di:)

Rebekah D. Author said...

Wow. That is... quite the premise. Wow.

Commenting as part of my challenge: