Lee Library #4 World War Cthulhu

I tend to find that most films and books around supernatural objects and the dark powers behind the universe focus on world war two, either the build it up to it or during. There is good reason for that, the Nazi leadership was obsessed with the occult, their plans for the world were horrifying and being a deranged lunatic didn’t seem to stand in the way of advancing in their empire. There is no shortage of stories where they are after the ark of the covenant, the holy grail, the spear of destiny etc.

While it is not by itself a problem, if this is the only time that you associate with these stories, that can be limiting.

World War Cthulhu is a series of short stories from various authors, great for showing battles against Lovecraftian horrors during wars you may not have considered. This is how this can help your writing, it shows you exactly how your supernatural horror or action story can be set during a time that previously you may have thought wouldn’t have been suitable.

Here are some examples of how well this worked-

The Game Changers by Stephen Mark Rainey

During the Vietnam war, a group of soldiers stumble across horrors not of this world. Very creepy story of people in a totally alien landscape as the jungle changes around them.

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The Bullet and the Flesh by David Conyers & David David Kernot

In modern day, war torn Africa, Cthulhu spawn has become a new biological weapon used by the various factions. What I liked here was how realistic they could make cosmic horrors seem. I could clearly imagine different groups in these war torn regions desperate to get their hands on these killing machines and unleashing them on an unsuspecting populace.

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Finally, my favourite

Dark Cell by Brian Sammons & Glynn Barrass

70/80’s setting that sees an agent trying to foil an IRA terrorist plot with a difference- they aren’t going to blow up a pub or murder a politician, they are going to summon a Dark Young and let it rampage through a major city.

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So if the knee jerk reaction is to set a story like this round about WW2 or an equally familiar era, why not spice it up and go for something more obscure. Vietnam war, modern day Africa, 70/80’s Irish Troubles, it can all work.

The only warning I would give is make sure you really understand the setting. Would be a bit off putting to be reading a story about the Korean war and the heroes are fighting Vietcong…

All the best folks, have a great day.

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