Thursday, August 6, 2015

The 'Cli-fi' Bank Shot - a blog post by Ivan Schneider on his own 2009 coinage of cli-fi

The 'Cli-fi' Bank Shot - blog post by Ivan Schneider on his own coinage of cli-fi since 2009


cli-fi Ivan
Image: Self-portrait #4 (2015), color pencil.

I’ve started reading some of the blogs again, and climate change has once again started to bubble up through my various feeds. In July, I read Margaret Atwood’s article: “It’s Not Climate Change, It’s Everything Change.” In it, I read about Danny Bloom, who curates the ''CLI FI REPORT'' at

I contacted Danny and sold him the Twitter ''@clifi'' handle for US$1.2 million in preferred stock.
No, wait, that’s not correct. What actually happened was that I gave him the keys to the account as a gift, along with my respect and gratitude for shouldering for so many years the burden of fostering climate awareness, doing so with a dedication that I had only briefly envisioned.

* * *

Can cli-fi make a real difference?

Well, it’s a bank shot. Not just from behind the eight ball, but from one of those formations where you’re trying to sink a solid blocked by a whole mess of stripes, the only viable shot off two rails into a combination.

The straight shot would be to get those responsible to stop screwing up the planet. But if that option’s blocked, we’re stuck with workarounds such as cli-fi.

Climate fiction has a dual-purpose role: The first is to make the reader more aware of the need for radical action on climate change, even if the people seeking out and reading cli-fi are already aware of the problem. That’s why the second and greater role of cli-fi is to activate the problem-solving instinct of the reader.

At the dawn of the age of rocketry, science fiction awakened us to the limitless possibilities of life among the stars, leading successive generations to dream up and build technological marvels.
At the twilight of the coal and oil economy, climate fiction has to spur the generations alive today to invent new strategies for adapting and surviving in a painful-to-imagine future, a future that we must reimagine with all the imagination we can muster. .

Image: Self-portrait #4 (2015), color pencil.

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