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I suspect the story I'm learning for is from Analog in the 1980s or so.

A science fiction writer is woken up from cold sleep, and greeted by government officials who tell him that his stories are remarkably, unnaturally predictive about the actual future, which is why he was revived. Somehow the writer makes contact with a scientist who has invented a device that the writer realizes would allow him to contact his past self - his stories were prophetic because he unconsciously had been remembering details about the real future he woke up in (I think the device was an alien artifact discovered on the moon - and the author had written a story about such an artifact - but hadn't included the bit about allowing contact with a past self). Maybe he was awoken specifically to deal with the alien artifact, because that discovery matched something in one of his stories.

He keeps this a secret from the government so they will continue to think he's a valuable prophet worth subsidizing. At one point, he mildly threatens the main military liaison he's been dealing with, by saying he will write a story in which the liaison's job no longer exists (because the military would no longer exist). At the end of the story, the liaison talks about one particular story he had liked (independent of its prophetic nature) and the writer says that the female villain had been based on his wife - the liaison says "Oh, she seems charming" (or words to that effect) revealing to the shock and horror of the writer that the wife had also been frozen and revived.

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  • Sounds like Joe Haldeman, maybe. Sep 19, 2022 at 0:11
  • Thanks - I'll check his bibliography
    – Andrew
    Sep 19, 2022 at 0:50
  • Doesn't seem to be Haldeman, but I see a story title that sounds vaguely familiar in ISFDB - anyone got a copy of the July '84 issue of Analog? If you, is Tom Rainbow's "Behind Every Good Writer" my story?
    – Andrew
    Mar 24, 2023 at 21:02

1 Answer 1

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I lucked into finding this one: It's "All Your Dreams Come True" by Jerry Oltion

A science fiction writer is woken up from cold sleep, and greeted by government officials who tell him that his stories are remarkably, unnaturally predictive about the actual future, which is why he was revived.

There are over two hundred proven correlations between your ‘fiction’ and our world today, including our present military structure.

Maybe he was awoken specifically to deal with the alien artifact, because that discovery matched something in one of his stories.

“Six months ago, in the course of seismic exploration, a group of Martian colonists discovered an underground cavity near the edge of the Chryse Basin. That was not terribly unusual in itself — Mars is riddled with caverns — but this one was perfectly circular, and according to the echoes, lenticular in shape. Also the roof of the cavern was less than ten meters from the surface. Naturally they were curious. They drilled into it, dropped a camera down the hole, and discovered a complete Martian city. Still intact. Does this strike you as familiar?” “Pardon?” “You are being deliberately difficult. Your novel, All Your Dreams Come True begins in exactly that way. Do you recall what happened after that?”

Nicholas remembered. “The colonists began to develop psychic powers. Community intelligence. They all started to think alike, and work for the same goals. It sounds nice, but it turned out to be less than a blessing.” “Exactly.” “What do you mean, ‘exactly?’” “That’s exactly what happened. They also tried to send a ship to Earth, to bring their newfound power to us. We barely captured it in time.”

At one point, he mildly threatens the main military liaison he's been dealing with, by saying he will write a story in which the liaison's job no longer exists (because the military would no longer exist).

At the door, Strahler stopped, turned, and said, “You are probably wondering what you will do for a living now that you are revived. May I suggest that you write utopian novels in the future?” Nicholas smiled, laughed. “Without the military,” he said. He watched Strahler stiffen and stalk out, then turned back to his breakfast, which was now almost cold.

At the end of the story, the liaison talks about one particular story he had liked (independent of its prophetic nature) and the writer says that the female villain had been based on his wife - the liaison says "Oh, she seems charming" (or words to that effect) revealing to the shock and horror of the writer that the wife had also been frozen and revived.

Not the liaison but a doctor.

’Till Death Do Us Part, eh? That was one of my favorites too. It was the only story I ever wrote with a purely evil villainess in it. I based the character on my wife.” Doctor Holly laughed. “You’re kidding. She strikes me as a very congenial person.” “That’s what I thought too, when I married —” Nicholas stopped writing in mid-word. “Wait a minute. You said ‘strikes.’ Present tense.” “Yes.” “She’s — she’s here?”

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