Retreat West Books signs University of Southampton eco-stories anthology

Retreat West Books is delighted to be working with the University of Southampton to publish the anthology of winning entries from their 2018 Green Stories competition, which sought work that would in some way enable, inform or inspire sustainable behaviour.

The anthology is titled, Resurrection Trust, and features 19 stories from the competition and a foreword from Caroline Lucas, MP for Brighton Pavilion and former Co-leader of The Green Party. It will also feature two additional stories from the Nothing Is As It Was climate-fiction anthology published by Retreat West Books in April 2018 to raise funds for Earth Day Network.

Several of the stories from this anthology were used by Dr Denise Baden of the Southampton Business School in her research on what kinds of stories inspire more sustainable behaviour.

Blue Planet by Jane Roberts and Warrior by FE Clark have been chosen to be featured as they are feel-good hopeful stories, which were shown to have the most impact on changing people’s minds about sustainability.

Dr Baden said: “Catastrophic tales while they can alert us to dangers, they can also switch people off and lead to fear, passivity and anxiety. However, my research indicates that showing positive examples of green behaviours is more likely to inspire greener behaviour. This is why I’m passionate about using our series of ‘Green Stories’ competitions to create cultural reservoir of positive stories, films, books and
plays that showcase what a sustainable society might look like and how we might get there.”

Jonathon Porritt, Co-Founder of Forum for the Future, writer, broadcaster and commentator on sustainable development, said: “Most people find it very difficult indeed to imagine what living sustainably might really mean – and neither dry facts nor hypothetical scenarios seem to help very much. The Editors of Resurrection Trust have set out to address that challenge through the power of the short story, with as diverse, surprising and hugely enjoyable a collection of entries as one might expect from an open competition of this kind.”

Resurrection Trust will be published in March 2019.

The University’s Green Stories competitions are ongoing and provide opportunities for playwrights, screenwriters and novelists. Find out more here.

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