Copyright Clark Thomas Carlton 2023
All art is covered by their respective artist's copyrights
I am Clark T. Carlton, the son of a barefooted, Floridian cowboy and a beauty queen from the Land of Cotton who ventured North to raise their children in the long shadow of New York City. When I was a teenager, my family moved from a blue collar melting pot to a segregated and conservative enclave of Southern California, an event which forever altered my world view.
I studied English and Film at Boston University and UCLA and have worked as a screen and television writer, a journalist, and as a producer of reality television in addition to a thousand and one other professions. I have always had more blue than white in my collar.
Prophets of the Ghost Ants is my first original novel, a tale inspired during a trip to the Yucatan when I witnessed a battle for a Spanish peanut by two different kinds of ants. That night I dreamed of armies of tiny men on the backs of red and black ants. After doing years of research on insects and human social systems, the plot was revealed to me like a streaming, technicolor prophecy on the sixth night of Burning Man when the effigy goes up in flames.
The premise for my novel is not a scientific one but there is science in it, so if I have to be put in a camp, then I stake my tent in science-fantasy. The fantasies I like are all allegories like Perfume, The Never Ending Story, Wicked, Jonathan Strange and Mr. Norell, Harry Potter, The Golden Compass and The Name of the Wind. The power of these narratives comes from depicting our usual human situations in the guise of something else. Asking if the people in my world could really get that small is like asking if the pigs and horses of Animal Farm could talk or if wizardry could be taught in a place called Hogwarts.
Some of my favorite books are the classics of science fiction, all of which have an element of fantasy if they involve time travel or traveling faster than the speed of light (or through a worm hole) to another solar system. As a child I had hopes of enlisting in Star Fleet Academy, but any physicist worth his neutrons will tell us that kind of space travel will never be possible. One of the greatest regrets of my life is that I cannot travel the galaxies to interact with alien societies but it turns me to the creation of my own imaginary world.
I live with my family in Los Angeles where I enjoy tennis, volleyball, song writing and painting. A friend of mine calls my paintings “Grandma Moses on acid” which I take as the highest compliment.
Thanks for checking out my site and my books.