This book is for anyone who wants to use creative writing to feel better by externalizing their inner apocalypse. Using 25 writing prompts with evocative photographs, readers are encouraged to make meaning of their life experiences by discovering, emphasizing and illuminating changed perspectives. Every character and every story we write, is autobiographical. This means that though we may have felt like the walking dead at times, we have a chance at redemption. Writing apocalyptic stories can convey a message of change, and even hope. Ultimately, though your stories may be seeded from people you know, these characters have traveled through the system of you; your heart and spirit and mind. Consider writing a clearing of sorts. Our writing can transform us by offering opportunities to explore, examine, and understand outcomes from our lives, and to imagine alternatives. You can evoke a sense of justice and peace, not by changing outcomes (usually it’s too late for that), but by changing perspective.
Days are longer in the spring, as the Earth’s axis increases its tilt relative to the Sun.
Climate Fiction (CliFi) is a genre that addresses the ways that climate change is already transforming our world. By anticipating and elaborating on what these changes might mean in the not so distant future, writers of CliFi use knowledge of science and climate to create worlds that we hope will remain fiction. We write the apocalypse in the hopes to avoid it.
Writing Prompt: What happens when the tilt of the earth’s axis can no longer evoke spring? Check out the science of one aspect of climate change and begin there.
The New York Times reports that 2014 was the hottest year on record surpassing 2010 “planetary warming…poses profound long-term risks to civilization and to the natural world.”
It’s ten years from now. Deliver the news, as it will be if no remedies are put in place, to Bettles Light and Power Company. Then, via this blue truck, take the news to the next close neighbor. And the next.
Pollution involves the introduction of waste or contaminants into the natural world, causing adverse and potentially catastrophic changes.
Often pollutants are a result of processes or behaviors that generate benefits to some, without regard for consequences to all.
Call the act of polluting ‘short-sighted’ or ‘selfish’, but changes of heart (and thus behavior) are not inspired by name calling. Also, scare tactics rarely work for more than the time it takes to scream and run.
What is made personal can be powerful.
Write for change: Tell the story Pollution, A Love Story in reverse, beginning with the trash that washed up on this shore.
Belief is more easily shaped by emotions than by facts. This is why the facts of climate change are so hotly contested.
Write to make change.
Writing prompt: Here is a conductor’s bag with money changer – create the world ten years from now in which whatever you believe about climate change proves true. Discover the truth as you ride a fast moving train, at the moment you discover you have no money to pay for your ticket.
Base your story on the premise: “this boundary we’ve created between humanity and our environment is artificial” by Bradley Cantrel
Password was the name of a television game show which first aired in the 1960’s. Non-celebrity contestants, teamed with celebrity partners,tried to guess passwords based on clues given by their partners. The game was timed, and if the clue-giver broke the rules by saying part of the password, they lost that round. Winners received cash prizes. Losers didn’t. This was a tame precursor to reality tv today.
Imagine our world in the not so distant future, when it is governed by The Password Games – translate this game into a political mechanism for winnowing out losers, in a society where money is the defining value of human life.
It won’t be difficult to ground this story in believable detail, drawing from what is ‘fact’ today.