“Can books save the planet?” My article for The Atlantic

Great article by J.K. Ullrich about cli-fi momentum!

J.K. Ullrich

If you’re interested in literature, STEM education, environmentalism, or just want to look at a picture of Jon Snow from “Game of Thrones” (yes, some culture critics argue the presence of cli-fi themes in George R.R. Martin’s fantasy series) check out the article I just wrote for The Atlantic about the growing popularity of cli-fi and its expansion into college classrooms. Special thanks to the people interviewed, who were kind enough to share their thoughtful commentary on the topic!

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Saving the World One Word at a Time – Writing Cli-Fi

clifi coverAvailable on Amazon

Discover how writing fiction can make the world a better place. This book offers instruction, inspiration and prompts for writing cli-fi; speculative fiction that focuses primarily on the ways that climate change is transforming our world. Explore how plot, place and character development can make climate change personal. By anticipating and elaborating on the future implications of climate change, writers of cli-fi use knowledge of science and climate to imagine and create apocalyptic or dystopian worlds with the goal of changing how humans think about, inhabit and interact with our planet. Place your writing at the forefront of efforts to reimagine the message and the messengers of climate change, taking the issue out of politics and into the realm of the personal.

Recent Reads: Saving the World One Word at a Time: Writing Cli-Fi

J.K. Ullrich

I received a promotional copy of this book from Ellen Szabo in exchange for my honest review: thanks, Ellen!

Screen Shot 2015-07-06 at 5.35.23 PMIn the preface to this book, author Ellen Szabo writes “I wish someone had told me when I was young that separation of the `hard sciences’ and `creative arts’ was a false duality”. I can certainly relate! As a cli-fi author myself, I know the two disciplines can be powerful allies. I’m glad Szabo’s book will help make this emergent genre more approachable for aspiring writers. “Saving the World One Word at a Time: Writing Cli-Fi” is a useful workbook for writers who want to explore the cli-fi genre, but need a little nudge to get started. Szabo discusses cli-fi as a form of social activism and highlights ways to bring environmental speculation to life. Some of the techniques she includes are ones I used myself in Blue Karma

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Love and Apocalypse – Externalize Your Inner Apocalypse with Creative Writing

 Available on Amazon.

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.