1. Travis Perry says:

    My fellow Travis, thanks for supplying the content for this week’s post. I appreciate your hard work!

    • Travis C says:

      No worries at all! This week is was shoveling snow, solving neutron transport equations, the Brayton thermodynamic cycle, and more snow. So costs of war was a welcome relief!

  2. The new Voltron series kind of has an interesting take on the supplies for war thing. We have the Galra Empire enslaving planets and stuff to obtain quintessence and crystals. What’s also interesting is that they seem to need those things in order for their society to run as they’re used to, which is part of why they go to war in the first place.

    Something I’ve noticed with the cost of war seems to be the difficulty of balancing the welfare of fighters, etc. with the mission the war is trying to accomplish. In my current WIP, this becomes a dilemma for the leader of the faction the main char joins. The faction leader knows the main char joined because he planned on using the misery of war to force himself to be grateful for the peaceful life he has with his family.

    That intention was revealed to the faction leader when she first interviewed the main char for a position in her faction, but she immediately criticized his motives. She lets him join, but says his reasons are ridiculous, considering the high death rate of war. She lets him join because he could be useful to her faction, but she bluntly says that she hopes he’ll resolve his personal issues quickly and return home before he dies.

    But then eventually she realizes that he probably won’t ever decide to return home on his own, for various reasons. So then she has to choose between furthering the welfare of her faction(which means keeping as many decent fighters as possible) or what she sees as the welfare of the main char and his family(forcing him to return to his family).

    I guess in real life one such dilemma could be in terms of where someone is stationed? I dunno. One youtuber I listen to was saying that one reason she married her boyfriend quickly was partly to increase the likelihood of her being stationed in Japan where she could actually see him and spend time with him. I can try to find the video and link it if you like. But, yeah, weighing out cost/effect/impact seems to be one of the most interesting but also the saddest part about war.

    • Travis C says:

      Thanks Autumn! I’m trying to recall where else I’ve seen it, but the trope of “Well, things have always been this way and we’ll do anything to keep it so” has always interested me. How far will someone go to maintain the status quo? I feel it’s easy to imagine getting stuck in a pattern and numb to ones actions after a period of time. I guess kind of Jupiter Ascending-ish.

      I hadn’t thought of it in those terms before, but my wife and I had an early life experience similar to your example. As a submariner I was on patrol for months at a time, then in homeport for a month or three, then back out again. We dated through a patrol, were engaged together through a patrol, but actually had two weddings in the off-time before my next patrol. She finished an internship at Campus Crusade (Cru) and moved to Florida earlier than we planned so we could get married in time to start healthcare and other benefits ahead of my next deployment. Just our pastor and two witnesses for #1, then later on we had a full ceremony #2 with family & friends. And a much delayed honeymoon. Had we waited, it would have been even harder for our next assignment overseas to have worked. We laugh about it now, but it was a huge decision for us when all that uncertainty was in the air. Not surprisingly, many military relationship events occur in the periods surrounding deployments (Oh, I’m deploying? We better get hitched then)

      • Hm…now that I think about it, I think dealing with deserters could be another place where the welfare of the troops vs. the mission and ‘this is how we’ve always done things’ tropes could manifest. I remember watching part of the newer Lonesome Dove series with my Dad, and there was something with deserters there. The main char was having a bit of a dilemma since he was hired by the military as a tracker, but part of his job was tracking down deserters so they could be brought back and executed. The main char was interacting with another member of the army for a lot of that episode, and that member was determined to execute deserters almost no matter what. Even maybe after he he came back to camp and saw his regiment or whatever destroyed by the enemy.

        When I first went to college I heard someone telling the story of their grandparents or something, and in that particular case, the grandparents got married, thinking that the guy wouldn’t get deployed soon. But he did get deployed and died before he could return home, though I’m pretty sure they were glad they got married regardless of what happened.

        Marriages around the time of someone’s deployment seem like a good way to add romance and maybe tragedy, though the trick might be figuring out how to approach it without being too cliche.

        The whole thing does sound romantic in a way(lol, part of me cringes at saying something so blatantly sentimental). But then maybe it could also be fuel for rushed decisions(which are a bit of an anathema for people like me).

  3. Good lord. Longest running series ever.

    • Travis Perry says:

      True. And not ready to finish yet.

      What can I say? Some subjects take more time than others. And number of people have expressed interest in the book that will eventually be put together from all these posts.

What do you think?