If politics is downstream from culture, wouldn’t it make sense for people who want to change politics to be involved in culture? Sure would. And authors Declan Finn and Rob Kroese are highly aware of this. They started Upstream Reviews, a website dedicated to reviewing sci-fi, fantasy, thriller, and horror books. Here is a Q&A The Loftus Party did with Finn about this new venture.
Full Disclosure: Finn and the author of this post, Paul Hair, are both members of the Conservative-Libertarian Fiction Alliance.
The Loftus Party: Why did you decide to create a website dedicated to reviewing sci-fi, fantasy, thriller, and horror books and fiction?
Declan Finn: In part because I was sick and tired of hearing lies about conservative literature. The first lie is that there is no such animal. This is BS. In fact, I’m a part of two different organizations with thousands of conservative authors as members. Thus, I was pissed off every time some other “right-wing” big wig on Twitter said, “There are no conservative artists in any media (by the way, here, buy my book about it).”
On the other hand? A year or two back, I even went around to “GOP, Inc.” publications, from The Washington Examiner to NRO, to The Epoch Times, and asked, “Why don’t you review conservative fiction?” I was told that fiction was a waste of time, or it didn’t matter. Funny, since most conservatives I know will cite “politics is downstream from culture” off the top of their heads. Yet GOP, Inc. will ignore fiction? What? Did I miss a memo?
TLP: You discovered that GOP, Inc. publications have no interest in reviewing fiction. I, and many others, have also discovered that the GOP and conservatives have no interest in culture—no interest in anything but being outrage organizations. Do you believe we’ve reached a point where enough people are realizing that the GOP and conservatism are worthless, and are willing to seek out other people for new ideas and even culture?
DF: I honestly can’t say. For example, I generally dislike Ben Shapiro, since he will spread the lie that there are no conservative creators. But I have to give him points for hiring Gina Carano when Disney fired her from The Mandalorian. Even if you dislike him, he at least showed up and hired her. And I didn’t see a line of people trying to get her work.
Frankly, a lot of people are going to look at actions like that and think he’s useful in right-wing culture. And how many will be able to hear otherwise?
And let’s face it, in a world where polling data is more misleading than not, it’s difficult to tell what “enough” is. But if we spread the word near and far that, “Yes, we exist, and we’re right here,” they may not have to seek us out. They may hear about us anyway.
TLP: Will authors and artists seeking to create outside of established institutions (major book publishers, comic book publishers, movie studios, and so forth) be able to succeed before progressives (who now control every institution) crush them? Or is it too late?
DF: Yes. They will succeed. In fact, many are. My friend Jon van Stry is one of the bestselling authors on Amazon. Author Nick Cole was kicked out of traditional publishing years ago, but is still selling well as a self-published author. My own publisher, Silver Empire, has circumvented Amazon entirely by starting their own Book of the Month club. One of my fellow authors at Silver Empire, Kai Wai Cheah, managed to be nominated for a Hugo award despite the general voting body being a cesspool of leftism.
One of the nice things about technology is that there’s always another way to do something. With on demand print technology, every author I know can start their own imprint and act as their own publisher.
And progressives can’t own every institution. Sure, they can own Big Tech, or TradPub, but there are always people starting their own institutions. Upstream Reviews is just one of those.
Progressives can try to crush us. But we’re too ornery to go down without a fight.
TLP: Promote your other websites, social media accounts, and works as you wish.
DF: I can usually be found ranting about something at DeclanFinn.com. My books are largely through SilverEmpire.org, though I’m also on Amazon if one wants to see the complete book collection at a glance. I can be found on MeWe and Gab.
And, of course, our reviews are at https://upstreamreviews.com/.
Top Image: Excerpt of cover for “Honor at Stake” by Declan Finn.