You can follow me here each Wednesday through the #clifimadness project which chronicles my research into climate change and how addressing it in fiction, the novel form, may be the answer to reaching a wider audience. I will chronicle my everyday ramblings on twitter and Facebook, please sign up for info there.
“A mind not to be changed by place or time.
The mind is its own place, and in itself
Can make a heav’n of hell, a hell of heav’n.”
― John Milton, Paradise Lost
So, you want to write? You have great characters and often in writing we are told that characters build the world around them. That The Shires wouldn’t be The Shires without the Hobbits. That characters are a product of place and place is a product of characters. Then you consider climate change, and as Milton says in the quote above we make our own heaven and hell in ourselves. I begin to consider how today we see climate change and how this has become a form of madness, zealot that accepts, maniac that denies, a litany of extremes. The seas will rise. Famine will be king. Floods will wash the land clean. The media, the pundit, the academic, the scientist, the person in the street all discuss when the planet will die but at no point do they blurt out the realisation that it us that will die and this planet will plod along wiping away any evidence we where her beyond plastic. Plastic will out survive the the pyramids. It is us as a species that are considering our own heaven, our own hell on the well intention path to the cliff edge. I consider how in those few degrees, those few metres of sea rise how people will change, those that survive and there will be survivors for a time but then what truths will survive to become myth? Consider how people will become refugees and how the UN will play a part in that because foreign armies in Europe could be seen as an act of aggression – some stupidities will take longer to die and paranoia will hold on to the bitter end – how those they save and those they leave behind will view them. Consider the nature of myth, consider how we will keep our sanity in a new world not of an individuals making but of a society that they cannot comprehend. How can one person begin to imagine over seven billion people when even today we still do not understand that number or how each one added to that number increases CO2. How fast could this happen, a hundred years, two hundred, well the truth can change from generation to generation. So, your children will look at you and consider what wasn’t done and why, like us, they are powerless to do anything but tinker at the edges of a perfect storm.