I recently conducted an interview with AMCTV’s Sci-Fi Scanner about my new novel MAKERS, in which we got into some nice, juicy detail about what makes Disney Parks so fascinating for science fiction treatment.
Q: So how did the concept evolve into creating a hacker Disney World in a Wal-Mart? Did it come from your other novel, Down and Out in the Magic Kingdom?
A: What it evolved out of was the incredible fun I had researching a novel set in a theme park. I’ve got a real interest in gadgets and doodads, and I set out to reverse engineer a novel plot that revolved around my getting to do fun stuff to research it. Amusement park rides, buying interesting junk, visiting hacker spaces, looking at 3D printers… What novel fits in there?
Q: And then you made Disney the villain.
A: Disney is essentially a privately run city that has 50,000 employees on site and does some novel social stuff as well as lots of interesting technical stuff. And in a world in which the costs of organizing people is going through the floor, Disney ends up with a product that is more expensive. What if in ten years, doing 60 percent of what Disney World does costs a tenth of a percent of what Disney World costs? At that point, Disney World is in real trouble. Disney is a thing unto itself, and science-fictionally it’s bottomless.