For this episode I got to interview Otter Lieffe who wrote and self-published the incredible book of speculative fiction called Margins and Murmurations about struggle, sex work and time travel. As you know I think DIY media and representation are super important topics, so it was amazing to talk to her about the creative process and how healing it can be to imagine a different future for marginalised folks. We also talked about reframing PTSD, visibility, creating dignified working conditions for ourselves, community funding and the radical bodywork network. You can support Otter`s work and receive access to wonderful extras through her Patreon here.
Otter is a working class, femme, trans woman, in and out of Brussels and Berlin where she runs a trans and queer-focused holistic clinic called Safer Healing.
Margins and Murmurations is her first novel.
She has been involved in grassroots activism for over a decade, in Latin America, the Middle East, Europe and North America and has at various times found herself involved in queer community organising, land reclamation, language teaching in migrant worker communities, playing samba in demonstrations and being too tired to get up the next day. She speaks between 3 and 5 languages and rarely sits still long enough to watch the seasons change.
“This is the story of Ash, a trans woman and healer living in a corner of Europe controlled by a militarized state. Amidst the economic crash of the 2020s, this land, once a hub of diversity, saw the rise of a state-imposed monoculture of gender, sexuality, ability and race. Those that didn’t fit, known as the divergents, were imprisoned, expelled or worse.
Ash and her best friend Pinar long ago escaped the City, left behind their days of fighting State oppression, and are eking out a calmer life in the forest, ravaged by the effects of climate change. One day, Jason, a resistance fighter, arrives abruptly into their life, reigniting personal and political drives and they find themselves drawn back into the fight.
Joining trans and queer organisers, sex workers and other members of a hidden underclass, they risk everything to return to the City and face their oppressors. In this fight for dignity, self-determination and their survival, Ash’s ability to transcend time, a trait that until now she has considered her curse, turns out to be a more powerful weapon than anyone could have imagined.”
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Are you wanting to make sense of these strange times, connect with nature in a deeper way and find your own philosophy?
Then we probably have a lot in common. My name is Yarrow and I’m a queer writer, gardener and artist who loves to daydream.
Leaning into ritual, being a lover of the wild and making my own magic has helped me through all kinds of tough stuff, which is why I am so passionate about sharing what I’ve found here.
Follow along for explorations of beauty, the human experience and what it means to not go back to normal.