Fic­tion au­thors imag­ine a world where Don­ald Trump is US pres­i­dent

7 Days in Dubai - - SPECIAL REPORT -

mag­ine it’s 2017 and Don­ald Trump is pres­i­dent. He’s been in­formed by na­tional se­cu­rity ad­viser Sean Han­nity that Rus­sia has launched a nu­clear mis­sile to Canada and war may be un­avoid­able.

Only a fel­low celebrity can make it right - at least if you ask Richard Hine, au­thor of the novella Kim Kar­dashian Saves the World (Af­ter Pres­i­dent Trump Nearly Ends It).

“I’ve taken the idea of how ridicu­lous it would be to put a re­al­ity TV star in the realm of the pres­i­dency, and how you need a big­ger TV re­al­ity star to step in,” ex­plains Hine, whose book is among a wave of fic­tion about the Repub­li­can pres­i­den­tial nom­i­nee.

If Trump’s po­lit­i­cal rise is proof that re­al­ity can out­wit the most in­ven­tive minds, then some are try­ing to win back the nar­ra­tive by jump­ing into the fu­ture. Thanks to the speed of dig­i­tal tech­nol­ogy, sev­eral au­thors man­aged to com­plete and re­lease Trump fic­tion for the GOP con­ven­tion, with ti­tles in­clud­ing Op­er­a­tion Golden Mane: The Don­ald Trump In­ci­dent, Don­ald Trump Builds a Wall: A Funny Story and Trumpoca­lypse Now: A Hor­ror Satire. Last month, The New York Times pub­lished a short story by ac­claimed fic­tion writer Chi­ma­manda Ngozi Adichie, whose The Ar­range­ments views the cam­paign from the per­spec­tive of Trump’s wife, Me­la­nia. “She sagged sud­denly with ter­ror, imag­in­ing what would hap­pen if Don­ald ac­tu­ally won,” Adichie writes. “Ev­ery­thing would change. Her con­tent­ment would crack into pieces. The re­lent­less in­tru­sions into their lives; those hor­ri­ble me­dia peo­ple who never gave Don­ald any credit would get even worse.”

An­drew Shaf­fer is an­other Trump fic­tion au­thor, a pro at par­o­dies from Fifty Shames of Earl Grey or How to Sur­vive a Shark­nado. Shaf­fer’s The Day of the Don­ald is set in 2018, with a wall along the Mexican bor­der un­der con­struc­tion and a would-be Trump bi­og­ra­pher mys­te­ri­ously dead. Shaf­fer bills his story as “a com­pletely un­true, ut­terly unau­tho­rised but not thor­oughly im­pos­si­ble thriller”. “Here’s a guy who’s a ready-made Bond vil­lain - he’s rich, he’s ec­cen­tric,” Shaf­fer says. “Plus, look at that hair. You can just imag­ine him walk­ing into a room where James Bond is tied up and then cack­ling ma­ni­a­cally.”

The books aim for laughs, but the au­thors say they want to ad­dress se­ri­ous is­sues. Hine sup­poses in his novel that a Trump vic­tory was made pos­si­ble by vot­ing re­stric­tions that kept stu­dents, mi­nori­ties and other pre­sumed Demo­cratic vot­ers from the polls. He also cri­tiques how can­di­dates use the me­dia.

“It’s so easy to make fun of Trump’s bom­bas­tic, ar­ro­gant and nar­cis­sis­tic style, point­ing out the flaws in his state­ments and fact-free ap­proach to his tweets,” says Hine, whose Twit­ter par­ody @RealDon­alDrumpf has more than 40,000 fol­low­ers. “So I wanted to write some­thing that comes out of a slightly dif­fer­ent an­gle. I wanted to say some­thing about celebri­ties and so­cial me­dia and how Trump has used so­cial me­dia and tra­di­tional me­dia.”

Paul Bel­low, the pseudony­mous au­thor of Trump Drumpf: A Po­lit­i­cal Satire Novel, said his book arose from con­ver­sa­tions with friends about the elec­tion. The story takes us to 2023, when the coun­try is be­ing run by Pres­i­dent Trump and Vice Pres­i­dent Face­book.

“I joked about writ­ing both a pro-Trump and anti-Trump book and prof­it­ing from both sides in true cap­i­tal­ist style,” he said. “How­ever, the more I thought about it, the more I wanted to write a satire knock­ing not only Trump but also some of the other cur­rent prob­lems in Amer­ica - ie ed­u­ca­tion, pri­vate pris­ons, etc.

“Buried un­der the candy-coated shell of this book, I’ve tried to shine light on a few huge prob­lems that Amer­ica will be fac­ing in the near fu­ture.”

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