Las Vegas, Nevada and The Raffle Series

Vegas Baby. Vegas. Ramsey whispers those words to remind himself of his past, give homage to the 1990s film Swingers and to acknowledge his excitement because he thinks he will be entering Las Vegas in 2027. So, why is Las Vegas such an important city in The Raffle Series?

I’d be a liar if I didn’t admit that this is one example of where the author “bleeds” through to the protagonist. Some of the reminiscing and memories Ramsey has in The Raffle Series about Las Vegas are really mine. My parents did take me to Vegas many times as a child and teenager. My father did almost get hit by a car on Interstate 15. And I do really enjoy going to Las Vegas with my wife now. 

But other than author bias, why would Las Vegas of the future play a critical almost Oz-like role in a Science Fiction/Dystopian/Noir Novel? Did I intend to “idolize” Las Vegas when I originally started the Series? Or am I just obsessed with how I think Las Vegas will look like in the future? 

Besides my nostalgic and current feelings towards Las Vegas, one of the primary reasons Vegas plays such a key role is its location. It is in Nevada, a state shrouded with mystery. If you have never driven through Nevada, I highly recommend doing so. Approximately 85% of the state is owned by the federal government. It is where nuclear bombs have been tested, advanced aircraft created at Area 51 and where you will literally see futuristic military vehicles traversing the desert highways. So, the whole state is the perfect setting for a Science Fiction/Dystopian/Noir tale like The Raffle. The state “bleeds” Noir. And that doesn’t even take Las Vegas into account! Let alone Reno and its sordid past as the divorce capital of the world. 

So, location is a key explanation and is why most of the core story in The Raffle Series occurs in Nevada. Laughlin, Spirit Mountain, Yucca Mountain and Area 51 are all relatively near Las Vegas, and Las Vegas will be one of the primary settings for the future of the Series. And Las Vegas today is already becoming the Las Vegas of the future: the sports and entertainment capital of the world. 

You can see it with the repurposing of some buildings and the massive, new projects being built there today. The pyramid at the Luxor is now an esports arena. The NFL will have the Raiders there next year when the stadium is complete, and the stadium currently contemplated flying cars in its future. The NHL has the Golden Knights. There are plans for more arenas. There was also a multi-billion dollar Smart City Project recently announced for the Las Vegas Valley.

Having just visited Las Vegas this past week, this the right time to explain some of the why behind its importance. There will be many more posts on Las Vegas and Nevada, including discussions of Yucca Mountain and Area 51. Area 51 in particular will be interesting as we get closer to the Storming Area 51 event/hoax on September 20. So stay tuned Rafflers. 

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