I’m thrilled to announce the sale of another reprint. My neo-Lovecraftian dark fantasy “Sweeter than Lead,” originally a PodCastle original, will be appearing in a future issue of Cosmic Roots and Eldritch Shores! Most exciting of all, they plan to publish it with an illustration. This is my first time one of my stories will get artwork, and I can’t wait to see what emerges. I’ll make sure to let you all know when it does!
My short story Meltwater came out today at Escape Pod, the internet’s oldest and finest source of audio science fiction! Rajan Khanna gave it an absolutely lovely reading, the perfect balance of mellow and melancholy. If you read the story last year, go forth and listen to the new interpretation – and if you didn’t, now’s your chance to discover my first professional short story!
2016 is drawing to a close, and in terms of my writing, it’s been an incomprehensibly good year. I’ve had the immense good fortune to sell and publish five short stories. I hope you’ll read some of them, and enjoy them; and if you consider anything I’ve done worthy of some kind of award nomination, I would be thrilled and flattered beyond belief.
I list my stories below in approximate order of pride, so if your time is limited, I strongly recommend #1. Insofar as I’m pushing one story as award-worthy, it’s “The First Confirmed Case of Non-Corporeal Recursion: Patient Anita R.“
Only a terrible parent would show such favoritism. But thankfully, we can show love for the whole family! I speak with the utmost of blustery impostor syndrome pride when I point out that this will be my first year of eligibility for the John W. Campbell Award for Best New Writer, and if you enjoy my body of work, I hope you’ll consider me.
Thank you for reading!
- The First Confirmed Case of Non-Corporeal Recursion: Patient Anita R. (Strange Horizons, June 2016; modern fantasy, 3400 words). A ghost story, with a classic recurrent haunting, but told from the ghost’s perspective. Also the ghost used to be a scientist. About how relationships survive or change across gulfs of habit, time, space, and death. Publication notes here, audio version here.1
- Meltwater (Strange Horizons, March 2016; science fiction, 2200 words). Love among the posthuman. The less I spoil about it, the better. Publication notes here, audio version here.
- The Time Cookie Wars (Flash Fiction Online, August 2016; science fiction, 970 words). Time travel black comedy! About all those times you blame your past self for your mistakes, and also about delicious baked goods. Publication notes here.2
- Sweeter than Lead (PodCastle, July 2016; dark fantasy, 2700 words). Neo-Lovecraftian: cosmic dread in the face of a hostile universe, without the underpinnings of racism and xenophobia. About addiction, succession, and malevolent prophecies. Publication notes here, audio version here.
Help support an awesome new SFF magazine thrive and grow! In its first year, Metaphorosis has published a host of beautifully-written stories by awesome folks such as Karl Dandenell, Kelly Sandoval, Mari Ness,and over 40 others (myself included). Every story goes out onto the internet for free, but Kickstarter funds will let them do fun things like add podcast narration and pay higher rates for their authors.
And if you donate at the $75 level, you might get a story critique from me!
- Attended the Viable Paradise 20th reunion, and gave a neuroscience talk on how to understand the brain. For the countless among you who missed it, fear not: I’m working on adapting my talk into a nonfiction article for various publications!
- Finished up a new short story, “The Hammer’s Prayer.” It’s in the second-draft stage, will need some more thought & revision before it’ll be ready for launch.
- Sold my first reprint, of a short story that didn’t get spread far on its first sale!
- Continuing apace with second-draft revisions of the novel. May not hit my December 1 self-imposed deadline, but I won’t be too far behind it.
- Thus, instead of doing NaNoWriMo, I’m doing NaNoFiReMo. (That’s “Finish Revising.” Or “fire,” as needed.) But no promises since I have multiple end-of-November deadlines.
- Current short story status: 11 submissions circulating, 3 of them shortlisted.
I’m pleased to announce that my first published short story, “The Wind and the Spark,” will appear as a reprint in Digital Science Fiction! This is one of my older stories, but I’m thrilled to re-release it: it’s currently only available in a paid issue of a magazine that went defunct before it published me, so not a lot of people have read it. Stay tuned for a publication date.
This was originally one of the first stories I ever wrote; the first words hit the page in June 2012, but it’s been vastly revised over the years. It’s a science fiction story set on humankind’s first extrasolar colony world, about fear and politics and the inevitability of generational divides.
I have some story notes below the cut, but they may contain spoilers, so read the story first!
How was your July? Was it amazing? Mine was!
- My story “Sweeter than Lead” came out at PodCastle. Neo-Lovecraftian dark fantasy about addiction, succession and malevolent timelines!
- My story “The Time Cookie Wars” came out at Flash Fiction Online1. Black comedy about time travel and delicious cookies!
- I finished the first draft of the Conquistador Dragon novel: 106,000 words of Age of Exploration epic fantasy, now titled The Cannon and the Coin!
- I got my Worldcon panel schedule!
- I attended Mary Robinette Kowal‘s short story intensive workshop. Folks this class is fantastic. My favorite parts were the tools for expanding ideas into stories at turbo speed, and especially the methods for plot structuring. And in the process I wrote up the openings to two super exciting new stories.
I think that’s it? It sure feels like enough! This coming month will bring yet more of the joyful chaos. Two weeks until Worldcon! And after that, only one week until my wife returns from Mars!
Have you ever had one of those “Past Self, why did you mess this up for me?” moments? Of course you have. Past Self is a jerk.
Well, the time has come to get your vengeance on Past Self, because my story “The Time Cookie Wars” is now available at Flash Fiction Online! If you like the internet’s best short-short fiction, I strongly recommend a subscription to their fine magazine.
Go enjoy a quick little bite of black humor, then continue below the fold for some brief extra background and story notes. May contain spoilers.