Guest Post: Amy Lunderman: Dystopian Fiction

First I would like to thank Megan for having me today; you're awesome! :)

Hi there, my name is Amy Lunderman and I'm a newly self-published writer of young adult fiction. I recently finished the They Walk Trilogy, which is a paranormal romance thriller focusing on zombies. I am currently working on a dystopian paranormal romance with a new twist on werewolves; The Staying Alive series: Persona.

Persona (Staying Alive Series #1)

Moira Warner never had an easy life, of course yours wouldn't be either if you grew up in a lab. It's the year 2028, and an experiment that went wrong seventeen years ago sent a once thriving Country into lock down. Half of the populous in the world are genetic mutations now, while the other half lives in fear of them. Immersed together, the rules of life changes and for some not for the better.

Moira is one of the lucky few who are hiding now, but moving back to the town she fled from makes that hard. Now she had to blend in while starting at a new school and try not to draw any attention to herself. But can you really blend in if your hair, eyes, and among other things change when you lose control? Or being what Moira calls "A mood ring on steroids."

Being the new girl is never easy and making friends is even worse, but then something happens that makes her change everything she once believed in. With the help from someone she would have never thought, she must come face to face with her past. A past she would rather forget.

"Taking a deep breath and slowly letting it out, she watches as the other girl slowly fades from the reflection. Her eyes dim, and her hair lightens then falls down her back. Her nails retract, and her teeth follow suit. She feels empty now, and no longer a strong fighter."- Moria

This brings me to what I would like to talk about today; Dystopian Fiction!

A dystopian society is usually a futuristic one, in which the laws and morals that govern the people within it have regressed to the point of repression or loss of human rights, designed by the author to highlight and explore the flaws in his current society.

There are many aspects that contribute to a working dystopian novel, and even more that make them stand out as their own design. Here are some of the factors that come to play in my Staying Alive Series:

Setting: One of the most important things that separate a dystopian novel from all the rest is simply: setting. While the setting of any novel is important, the setting for a dystopian novel is key. It is, after all, the changingg world that makes a dystopian novel a dystopian.

The setting for Persona, is in the year 2028 and is based in Upstate New York. It's in the future yes, but mostly the rural demographic setting hasn't changed.

However, an easy trip across the Country is no longer described as easy. Every state boarder in the United States is now blocked by passport tolls, heavily guarded by armed soldiers. No one is allowed in or out of without a passport.

Society: Some dystopian works emphasize the pressure to conform in terms of a requirement not to excel. In these works, the society is ruthlessly egalitarian, in which ability and accomplishment, or even competence, are suppressed or stigmatized as forms of inequality.

In Persona, the society is broken down based on fear of being persecuted. For those that are inflicted with the MBS disease anyway, while the rest lives in their own worry that they too will be inflicted. Thus, an era of discrimination  is born. The inflicted people even though they live among the normal, they are kept separate from them. One example, is public transportation; all moter vehicles are equipped with a barred divider.

Social Groups: Concepts and symbols of religion may come under attack in a dystopia.

In Persona, there are many social groups that work in secret against the order the law tries to constitute. One group calls themselves the Purists, and they believe that all those that are inflicted are abominations and should be eradicated.

Then there is the pack, but they run a more mysterious operation; the government and even some inflicted don't really know much about them.

Politics: The political principles on which fictional dystopias are based are flawed and result in negative consequences for the inhabitants of the dystopian world, which is portrayed as oppressive.

The politics in Persona, is the one thing that keeps the society in balance, even though it's a slightly of kilter balance. The government has taken over policing their citizens, and those in power are just sitting back and letting them do it.

They have banned any use of ones Persona in public; such as schools and any business. If caught the user is, depending on the usage, privately reprimanded and sentenced to jail. Minors are treated less violently, but the law is mostly the same with them.

Back stories: Because dystopian literature typically depicts events that take place in the future, it often features technology more advanced than that of contemporary society.

In Persona, the back story is key for the events that are underway. The story focuses on the main character Moria, and how she came to be inflicted. Her story ties into the events that sent the world into chaos, even though he doesn't know the whole truth herself.

Getting the truth about your past isn't always wise, and she is about to find out the hard way. Her path is about to collide with the ones that started it all, and it's quite the conundrum; that she is falling for the son of the who's infection spread across the Country many years ago.

Unbroken (Staying Alive Series #2) Coming Soon!

Are there any dystopian fans out there; if so what are your favourites and why?

The Staying Alive series: Persona is available to buy now!


  1. If dystopian supresses uniqueness, I can think of several countries right now that do that, either politically or economically. Interesting!

  2. Great post. I'm not sure what my favorite dystopian books are... The Uglies was pretty good. And after this post "Persona" sounds very interesting as well :)

  3. Thank you Alex and Morgan! :)