Author Anna Orridge writes cli-fi as well as eco and nature-influenced stories, novels and poems. I asked Anna about the psychological impact of writing about these difficult but important subjects and her own personal creative methods.
Leslie: What are the various ways you write about climate change?
Anna: The short stories I write which have a climate focus are usually set in the near future. ‘Vane’, for example, which appeared in Mslexia, is set in an anonymous British coastal village about fifty years from now. The cli fi novel I’m currently writing takes place in York in 2054. Continue reading FLASH FICTION AND CLI-FI→
Author Niamh Calderwood talks about acting, writing, transitioning in Sunderland and finding herself in a deep and loving relationship. As part of her journey, Niamh talks about joining Extinction Rebellion and living with an awareness of climate breakdown.
Leslie: You’re a multi-disciplinary creative person with an emphasis on crafting words. Can you describe your passions, your projects and what inspires your creative work, please.
Niamh: When I first began my creative journey it was all about escapism. I was a troubled kid, and having the opportunity to disappear into another person’s life through acting (mostly on stage, but a little bit on screen too) was a necessity in my formative years. I wouldn’t have survived high school (John Spence Community High in Tynemouth) or my first few years of college in Newcastle if I hadn’t been able to pretend to be someone else. Continue reading REBEL WITH A LOVING CAUSE→
Tom Fox uses recycled and reclaimed materials to make musical instruments, sound machines and interactive installations. He has performed or talked at The Tate Modern, The Royal College of Music, The Royal College of Art, and many European music tech festivals. I interviewed Tom about what goes into his performances, his vulpestruments and his organisation Hackoustic – a London-based group that promotes original sound artists, music technologists and instrument builders.
I interviewed Cambridge-based participatory artist Hilary Cox Condron who describes herself as, “Passionate about using creativity, culture, stories and collaboration to connect, strengthen and shape communities.” Hilary works with many groups across the city. In her own words she has, “A true commitment to equality, diversity, social inclusion, the environment and place-making through the arts.” The Chair of Cambridge United once introduced Hilary as, “Community glue.”
I interviewed Lisette Auton, disabled writer, activist, spoken word artist, theatre maker & creative practitioner. Lisette has been chosen as a Penguin RHUK WriteNow Mentee, one of ten out of 1700 applicants. She often works with groups that are underrepresented in the mainstream – for instance with disabled people, and in her work with Middlesbrough Institute of Modern Art celebrating older people. As guest editor for Disability Arts Online, Lisette used the platform to focus on Northern Emerging Disabled Artists. Lisette says about her spoken word performances: “I deliver passionate, high octane, physical pieces about disability, mental health, politics and quite often also my freckles.” Continue reading LISETTE AUTON DOES STUFF WITH WORDS→
I interviewed Bertin Kalimbiro from Goma, in Congo, about Programme d’appui à la résilience et adaptation face au climat (PARAC), the environmental organisation he founded, and the ways his community are coping with climate change.
Leslie: How is the ecological and climate crisis affecting where you live?
Bertin: For more than two decades now we’ve experienced an unprecedented disturbance of the growing seasons. In the past we had the dry season from June to August and then January to February, while the rainy season took up the rest of the months. But now we can’t distinguish these seasons, because most of the year is in drought. Continue reading SAFE FOOD & WATER FOR ALL→
I interviewed Alice Boyd who works on improving environmental sustainability in the theatre/entertainment industry though the arts organisationStaging Change. Besides founding and co-directing Staging Change, Alice is also a theatre maker and sound designer with Poltergeist Theatre. She believes in reducing the carbon footprint of performances and bringing people together in a positive, sometimes humorous way, to face the truth about climate breakdown and bio-diversity loss.