“The stories we tell can either reflect the society we are a part of or transform it. If we want to bring new worlds into existence, then we need to challenge the narratives that uphold current power dynamics and patterns.”adrienne maree brown, Octavia’s Brood
Visionary fiction, as defined by Octavia’s Brood editor Walidah Imarisha, is “science fiction that has relevance toward building new, freer worlds . . . Visionary fiction encompasses all of the fantastic, with the arc always bending towards justice.” When they put together the anthology Octavia’s Brood: Science Fiction Stories from Social Justice Movements, editors Imarisha and adrienne maree brown meant to draw together activists, organizers, and creators from social justice movements in a process of creatively reimagining the world. They wanted to collect and share different visions, ideas, and imaginings of the world from those who had already been working towards justice.
When we chose the book Octavia’s Brood as our focus for the University of Washington Bothell/Cascadia College Library Community Reads program, we did so from a place of exhaustion and yearning. After two years of pandemic, amidst political instability and ongoing systemic discrimination and harm, we found ourselves – as individuals, as a campus, as a world – drained and saddened . . . and desperately in need of something new. We found ourselves craving new forms of community connection, new ways of envisioning the world, and new ways of being with one another. We chose the topic of visionary fiction as a tool to help us imagine those new ways of being and living into a better future.
Inspired by the project of Octavia’s Brood, we hope to engage in a similar creative effort in our own community, our own intervention in the world. On this site, you may submit your own visionary writing – fiction or poetry or nonfiction; under your name, a pseudonym, or anonymously – and share it with your fellow community members. We hope that this site will provide a space for our own collective community dreaming, in which we imagine a better world – together.
For more information about the Community Reads team, visit us at our website. To learn more about our guidelines for submission and respectful sharing, visit our Community Agreements page. For prompts from your community members – or information about submitting your own – take a look at our Idea Pool. And to get started sharing your writing, click Share.