When we were at Worm’s Head, South Wales, recently we witnessed a huge sand dredger hauling its cumbersome body forwards and backwards through the water, dragging up sand for all the new buildings. This level of extraction causes endless untold stresses on the local ecosystem, and yet we just see this as a natural element of human progress.
Why is this?
By sending my book out into the world as copyleft/ under the Creative Commons I wanted to put myself in the place of nature. It’s a way of standing in solidarity with the trees and all of nature who we strip bare, forage, mine, manage, drain, dredge and pilfer all too often.
I wanted to get some sense of how it must feel to offer your creative soul to the world and have absolutely no control over how the fruits of this labour would be used.
I’m going to be honest, it’s been a difficult process. I’ve put in so much work, six years of my time, and some money, into creating this novel, only to ‘practically give it away’. This process is an act of trust but the emotional rollercoaster has been a tough one. I am asking people to pay for the novel, or to subscribe through PayPal, but it’s a request, not a demand.
So many times I’ve thought to change my mind. As much as he accepts my decision, Andy has also struggled with publishing in this way. It’s uncomfortable, because you imagine all that work, all that effort, just being gobble up, copied, shredded, regurgitated, and worse.
Then I return to the trees, and something they said to me many years ago, ‘you will speak for us’. At that time I didn’t know how I could keep that prophecy and so denied what my heart told me, dismissed it as a form of madness, but perhaps, as time unfolds, the way is starting to become clear.