Saturday, August 10, 2013

Cli fi novelists Margaret Atwood and Nathaniel Rich at Kingston WritersFest in Canada on September 25

Cli fi novelists Margaret Atwood and Nathaniel Rich, being hailed by media critics as two leaders of the new cli fi genre, will appear together at the Grand Theatre in Kingston in Canada on Sept. 25, 2013 -- opening the Kingston WritersFest. It's just about a month before the first anniversary of Superstorm Sandy along the East Coast of the USA that served as a major wake up call about future storms and emergency preparedness (or the lack thereof)._____________________________________________ Ms. Atwood is poised to launch the third and final installment of her trilogy that began with ''Oryx and Crake'' and continued with ''The Year of the Flood'', which opened the first Kingston WritersFest in 2009. No one was talking cli-fi then. The press at that time just called her books sci-fi, a term that she herself famously rejected, even though her novels were winning SF awards [''The Handmaid’s Tale'' won the Arthur C. Clarke Award and was a finalist for both the Nebula and the Promethus Awards.]___________________________________________________________________________ Other cli fi writers, too, are warning us of the dangers ahead, already turning out stories of climatic catastrophe. Such fiction now has a real and legitimate name: cli-fi, a sub-genre of sci-fi or even a completely new genre of its own (take your pick) — a speculative story in which the narrative punch is supplied by a dramatic change in the physical world around us, brought on wholly or in part by the machinations of humans.______________________________________________ The term was coined by U.S. climate activist and public relations blogger and consultant Danny Bloom in 2008 and used by Scott Thill at Wired magazine in two movie reviews in 2009 and 2010. In 2011, Margaret Atwood re-tweeted it. [Rich told reporters that he never heard of the cli fi term before he started his book tour this spring.]_____________________________________________ This spring, The Guardian legitimized it, hailing Atwood and Rich as two leaders of the new genre. Both these Planet Earth-shattering authors be at the Kingston WritersFest. Should be a good festival.

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