Apr 3, 2015

Guest Post: Realism and Disability in the Apocalypse by Holly Kench


What is Defying Doomsday?

Apocalypse fiction rarely includes characters with disability, chronic illness and other impairments. When these characters do appear, they usually die early on, or are secondary characters undeveloped into anything more than a burden to the protagonist. Defying Doomsday will be an anthology showing that disabled characters have far more interesting stories to tell in post-apocalyptic/dystopian fiction.

Defying Doomsday will be edited by Tsana Dolichva and Holly Kench, and published by Twelfth Planet Press in mid 2016. Defying Doomsday is currently crowdfunding via Pozible. To support the project visit: http://pozi.be/defyingdoomsday


And now some words from Holly:


Realism and Disability in the Apocalypse

by Holly Kench

I’ve heard some people argue that having disabled characters in apocalypse fiction is unrealistic.

Apparently, in science fiction, the reanimation of the dead is possible. So is an alien invasion. But a disabled person surviving during an apocalypse? Now that’s just silly. We can only take suspension of disbelief so far, and that is the line.

I’m going to be honest. I don’t know that I’d survive long during an apocalypse. I have no idea how to fire a gun; I don’t know how to light a fire without matches; and I have no desire to live in a world without chocolate.

But I don’t really see my physical impairments as a particular problem. Of course, it depends on the apocalypse, and, sure, I’ll need to remember to loot the pharmacy before I head to the supermarket. But I’ve got a high pain tolerance, a solar charger for my iPad, and about as much chance as the next person of surviving a zombie hoard by covering myself in waste product.

So why aren’t there more people like me, more disabled people, in apocalypse fiction? You know, apart from the chocolate issue.

That’s a question Tsana Dolichva and I want to put to the test in an anthology dedicated to exploring tales of disabled characters in apocalypse fiction. Defying Doomsday will be an anthology of apocalyptic and post-apocalyptic stories, featuring disabled, chronically ill, mentally ill and/or neurodiverse protagonists. We are currently holding a crowdfunding campaign through Pozible to fund the anthology. To support the campaign or to preorder a copy of Defying Doomsday, visit: http://pozi.be/defyingdoomsday

Your support is greatly appreciated! You can find out more about Defying Doomsday at our website or follow us on Twitter and Facebook.


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