Wrangling 'Climate Anxiety’? Optimism Required.

On Earth Day 2022 (April 19), I published my debut fantasy novel, "Once in a Pink Moon," a twisted retelling of the Frog Prince Tale, set against the background of climate change. The day after my book launch, I attended an online town hall on climate change resiliency in the small suburb where I live, Lake Forest Park, north of Seattle, Washington.

I went hoping to hear things that would contribute to my thinking as I finish up the plots for Book Two in my Frog Tale Trilogy series, "When Frogs Dream," and Book Three, "Walls Fall Down." I came away with some profound insights into why I was pouring my heart and soul into these three works.

Climate anxiety is real, and I have it

The first takeaway is that, like 70 percent* of other people living in this country, I am worried (most times extremely worried) about climate change. That should not have come as a surprise to me. I seem 'wired' for anxiety (anybody else out there like me?), and I have spent a lifetime figuring out how to cope with it. But I'm never really 'named' my anxieties. News to me that climate anxiety was a 'thing.' (Yes, I had heard of it, but I never thought of applying the term to myself.) It was also news that 'naming' this kind of anxiety seemed to help.

That piece of insight came about thanks to the town hall keynote speaker, Sarah Jaquette Ray, author of "A Field Guild to Climate Anxiety: How to Keep Your Cool on a Warming Planet." While her advice is aimed at the young, I think it applies to everyone. Ray urges us to create our own stories, stories that make us feel like there are "wonderful things on the horizon."

That advice resonated with me and helped me see that I was trying to comfort my own heart in writing this series.

Using ‘hope’ to cope
And that's what happened to me when I wrote my book. I transformed my view of the environment and my connection to it. My climate anxiety is not going away. But by diving into my relationship to Nature and connecting more deeply with it, hope, not fear, is my motivator.

While full of tension, drama, and imagination, "Once in a Pink Moon" is imbued with the optimism that we can reconnect to Nature. To respect ourselves is to respect Nature. To care for Nature is to care for ourselves. To protect Nature is to protect ourselves and other species and ecosystems on our planet as well.

As one reviewer said, “Not only will I never be able to look at a frog the same way, I will never be able to see a tree the way I used to. Reading this book changed my daily walks, seeing and feeling things in nature in a way I haven’t seen or felt before.” (Quote used with permission.) That is precisely the reaction I was hoping for when I wrote Book 1.

I invite you to read my book, and I hope my thread of optimism weaves its way into your heart as it has into mine.

I have a Goodreads Giveaway going through the end of August. Please enter today to win one of 100 Kindle versions of "Once in a Pink Moon: The Frog Tale Trilogy – Book 1. I would love to know what you think of the book in the form of a review or a rating.

While you can buy an autographed copy of my book from me, you can also get an unautographed copy from Amazon.

Thank you.