Interview #2 with Bokerah Brumley   1 comment

Bokerah BrumleyI’m welcoming back Bokerah Brumley to the blog. When I interviewed Bokerah in April, she and I were probably both writing pieces for the Agorist Writers Workshop’s anthology Echoes of Liberty which asked for an alternative history short with a twist … focusing on agorist, libertarian, voluntaryist themes. When my short was accepted, I offered to interview the other authors and then discovered Bokerah’s name in the list. Welcome back.

Thanks, Lela! It’s great to be back. I was happy to see your name on the list, too. I’ve poked around your blog, and I like what I see, so I was very much: “Oh, oh! Yay! I know her!” J


You write fantasy, so you’re clearly interested in speculative fiction. Agorist Writers Workshop has produced two anthologies that are speculative fiction focus on libertarian themes. Tell me what first attracted you to the Agorist Writers Workshop?

I write mostly clean fiction (i.e. no excessive swearing or graphic sex) and a whole lot of hope all under the Speculative Fiction heading. It’s my favorite because I can make up the world. I think Alternate Histories sort of falls under that umbrella, too. I wasn’t in last year’s anthology, but it sounds like it would have been right up my alley. Mostly, I write fantasy and science fiction. I’ve been on a fantasy stint this year, but I think I’m going Sci-Fi next year. Give me some space ships and ray guns. Shiny.


For this Echoes of Liberty piece, Marilyn Reimagined, it was actually a bit of a circle-around that got me involved.


Random day-in-the-life of me:


In my world, we’re big fans of home education, and my five kids and I watched the 2002 movie adaption of The Count of Monte Cristo over our lunch break—the one with Jim Caviezel, Guy Pearce, and Richard Harris. When Edmond asks who will get the letter, it’s to be given to Monsieur Clarion.  Out of curiosity, I chased that word, Clarion, down on Google.


A day or so later, the Clarion Call account followed mine on Twitter. So I followed the social media trail, and I was intrigued by the premise of the anthology. I had a delicious idea, but I didn’t know if I could pull it off.


Funny aside: it’s because of The Count of Monte Cristo movie that my nine year-old middle son flubs a bit on Kokomo by The Beach Boys. He sings, “Aruba, Jamaica, ooh I want to take you to Bermuda, Bahama, come on pretty mama. Key Largo, [Mondego], baby why don’t we go…”


I found myself challenged by the alternate history aspect of this project. I love history, I write fantasy, but I’d never done them together before. I eventually loved it, but it is definitely a different genre that isn’t done as much as others. What about you?


I’ve never written alternate history before, but I love history, too. And all the what-ifs and how ONE PERSON can make a huge difference that ripples through time. I’ve made up all sorts of things mentally before (I might have a hint of conspiracy theorist in me), but I’ve never tried to get one down in a cohesive story. This was the first time I did that, and I loved it.



Talk a little about your philosophical beliefs. Why libertarian, anarchy, agorism, voluntaryist?


To be honest, I’ve been circling around some of these ideas for a long time.


I don’t want a government that defines things like marriage for me. That isn’t their business. I’m not one side or the other. I’m the one over here, hollering, “Don’t you see the problem with this? The government shouldn’t think they have the right to define it AT ALL.”


Besides, in my opinion, if the government opted out of defining anything, it’d be more fair anyway. But, as we know, the government never downsizes voluntarily. Not really. Not for Red or Blue or Purple.


{I like teal. Can I be teal?}


I don’t require politicians to define it all for me. That’s between me and Yahweh. I believe in the right of self-governance from conception. And protecting that right for any and every soul until they are able to self-govern.


I’m not an anarchist, but I do think local people can locally govern themselves better than a Fed-sized government can. I hate that the Fed defines everything, employs the most people, and manages my healthcare. I don’t need them to do that.


The government does not give me my rights. My Creator did that already.


Do we need some laws? Yes. Absolutely.


But, I think, as it is with our food systems, it is with governance. The farther away from the point of origin we get, the LESS healthy it is.


I don’t need dudes in D.C. defining my life or making up rules that I break by accident because nobody knows them all until I’m slapped with a fine or whatever.


It’s convoluted, and we want out. We want our kids out. We want our food outside of this messed-up, cardboard calories manufacturing system. We want our healthcare to come from beyond this dumbed-down, medicate-the-symptoms system. We don’t want to stand in line for a law-mandated injection, and we demand the liberty to decline participation. We’d rather use whole foods, herbs, vitamins, etc. And we should have the right to be out of the system without being penalized.


We can argue about which laws and context and whatever until we’re red or blue in the face. Primarily, I want local politicians governing locally. I want to know where my food comes from and where my mayor lives. That’s what I want. And that’s why this anthology appealed to me.


One person, one difference can change so much.



Marilyn Monroe. That’s not like way-back history and I don’t think libertarian when I think of her. Without giving away too much of the story, how’d you come to picking Marilyn Monroe?


I love Marilyn Monroe and JFK. Since the sixties, there’s always been a distinct attempt to romanticize this elitist idea of a Kennedy’s Camelot. And, historically, Marilyn wasn’t Libertarian. But I wondered if I could write a successful fiction using these historical pieces, but re-imagined inside a different framework. I hint at A LOT in my short, but this was how I satisfied the perimeters for the anthology and was still able to use a couple of my favorites from history. I suppose it went well. J



Echoes of Liberty (The Clarion Call Book 2) by [Walsh,Richard, Andersen,Diane, Brumley,Bokerah, Knowles,Joseph, Markham,Lela, Chiavari,Lyssa, Biedermann,Heather, Schulz,Cara, Johnson,Mark, Mickel,Calvin]The libertarian anarchists I know here in Alaska don’t vote, which is why I can’t quite claim I am one. But, this being an election year, what do you think of the shenanigans that we’re witnessing? If you vote at all, would you vote for any of them and why?


I do vote.


Ugh. That’s all I’ve got. UGH.


Yeah, me too. I feel voting is the only way that we’re allowed to make changes that don’t lead to bloodshed, so stopping just cedes that power to the the elites and will eventually lead to bloodshed. Certainly, I can’t reasonably vote for Trump or Clinton and I don’t think Gary Johnson is my perfect candidate … but I’m going to vote for him because I think he’ll do the least damage and nobody had to cart him off a stage where he’d been told he wasn’t welcome. But UGH! This has been a difficult year and the political mess has pushed me closer to becoming an anarchist than reading anarcho-capitalist literature ever has.

Where do readers find you and your books?




One response to “Interview #2 with Bokerah Brumley

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  1. Reblogged this on Daermad Cycle.

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