So. The Hush is coming out today.

Later in the evening, I will meet up with my good friends, the amazing poet/writer/actress Sara Rahmeh, the stalwart film director Marianne Hansen, and the writer and businesswoman extraordinaire Marilag Dimatulac for celebratory drinks.

There’s little of me that’s in the mood of celebrating.

I decided to write this book on day 2 of a 3-day silent period. That was the result of an argument I had with my now ex-wife. If you were to ask me what the argument was about, I wouldn’t be able to tell you. I only remember us glaring at each other from opposite ends of the bed, not saying a word.

The silence that followed was comfortable. We gave each other space. Or maybe we just didn’t feel like talking to each other. Maybe both. And so I wondered what a world would look like where couples weren’t allowed to talk at all and having the burden of (mis)communication taken from them. What misunderstandings we’d avoid!

As time went on, our communication broke down completely. Needs were not met. Hurt was dismissed. Talking things out led to becoming defensive. And I had enough. So, I stopped communicating. I stopped bringing up things that hurt me and I stewed on them, until it all came out in one bitter wave a few days before I asked for a divorce.

I don’t feel like celebrating. This book is too personal, but then again, every piece of honest fiction is condemned to be too personal.

Ah, well…Live, learn. Or don’t learn and keep repeating the same mistakes.

This book remains a dystopian speculative fiction novel with clifi elements. So, despite the story behind it, it’s still fun to read (as fun as reading dystopian speculative fiction with clifi elements can be). I sincerely hope you enjoy it and, if you take anything from it that may enhance your worldview, please drop me a message.

I’d love to talk with you about it.

I was recently invited to participate in a number of panels for WriteHive 2022, an online conference for writers. It has been a great honor chatting with authors like Chelsea Lockhart (also the CEO of Written in Melanin), fellow biologist and clifi writer Patricia Tavormina, and memoirist Yujin Kim. Always interesting to pick the brains of such a diverse group of people who all love writing.

If you have the time and are curious, do check them out (links at the bottom).

The panel that I enjoyed the most, however, was a one-on-one with the charismatic and eloquent Jerusha René, fellow writer and CEO of WriteHive. We talked climate fiction.

I’m writing these lines just a few days after my city, Copenhagen, broke a nearly 50-year old heat record. It hasn’t been the only city that has broken heat records this summer. Parts of Italy went on a state of emergency and London is shutting down. Greece experienced a 750% increase in forest fires since the previous year.

The thing about fiction is that you can write about anything and, if you coat it in a good story, it will stay with people. I used to think it was climate change deniers that were holding us back and it was them I was hoping clifi could reach to.

I no longer believe that.

It’s inertia that will do us in. Governments promising to cut fossil fuel emissions while awarding increasing incentives to dig for oil. Corporations being lazy because they can’t see beyond the next quarter’s results. I mean, look at this.

Climate fiction will become more and more important as we witness a true apocalyptic scenario unfolding before our eyes. It is my hope that this will spur people into action. Make them demand change from their governments and boycott those industries that continue leading us to a disaster we cannot recover from.

Please, if you value your existence, take action. Recycling and taking public transportation will not cut it anymore. We need big scale drastic action now.

Write to your politicians. Demand action. Form grass-roots organizations and campaign. Do Not. Give. Your Money. To Polluters.

Links to the other panels;

Scientists in Science Fiction

Indie Authors: Is it right for me?

Indie Publishing when English is Your Second Language

Dear friends, good news.

The Hush, my debut novel, got picked up by Inspired Quill for publication aiming for July 2022. Obviously these are exciting news, made doubly so by the fact that Inspired Quill is an indie publisher fighting the good fight. It actively donates to charity and we’re expecting to give some of the proceeds to environmental causes.

I’ll be posting more details as we’ll be getting closer to the date.