“A Place to Grow” is Live at Beneath Ceaseless Skies!

I’m happy to announce that my story “A Place to Grow” is now free to read at Beneath Ceaseless Skies!

I’m pretty excited about this one. It was a huge technical challenge for me and took many, many drafts to get right. I’m not exaggerating when I say it took years for me to learn how to pull this story off. (I think I wrote the opening paragraph back in December 2013?) I’m extremely grateful to my very patient friends and very patient editor who help me through the iterations.

The song I played on repeat as I was writing and revising this story was “Outro” by M83. Because, naturally, my characters needed an epic soundtrack as they were trying to rebuild the world around them.

Hope you enjoy!

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Clarion West and Upcoming Publications

As usual, I’ve been neglecting this blog again, so as usual, I’m cramming several good news announcements into one post.

The biggest announcement is that I’ve been accepted into Clarion West’s Class of 2017! For those of you who are not familiar with the program, Clarion West is a six week writing workshop in Seattle for speculative fiction writers. Each week is taught by a different writer or editor who’s established in the field. This year the instructors are Daryl Gregory, Kij Johnson, John Chu, Connie Willis, Daniel Jose Older, and Pat Cadigan. Every week students are expected to write a new story and only 18 students are accepted into the program every year.

I am SO. EXCITED. I’ve been hoping to have the opportunity to go to one of the Clarion workshops since high school.

Okay, so I’m also thrilled to announce that two stories of mine have been accepted for publication! The first of which is called “Five Meters Ahead, Two Centuries Away” which has found a home in Upper Rubber Boot’s Broad Knowlegde: 35 Women Up to No Good anthology. The second is a flash fiction piece titled “Listen and You’ll Hear Us Speak” which has been accepted by Flash Fiction Online (one of my favorite flash fiction markets!) I’m not sure when these pieces will be out yet, but I’ll update the “Publications” page when I know.

Lastly and on the topic of stories coming out, “A Place to Grow” will be live in Issue #225 of Beneath Ceaseless Skies next week! Of course, if you’d like to read it RIGHT NOW you can get a copy of the issue here. This time, I’m sharing a Table of Contents with the fabulous Caroline M. Yoachim and her heart-wrenching story “Carnival Nine.” (Seriously, go read it.)

That’s it for now! I’m planning on having a short post about “A Place to Grow” up in a few days.

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Update: New Story Sale and the Nebulas

News, I have it. So I post.

The first piece of news is that a new story of mine has been accepted by Beneath Ceaseless Skies. It’s called “A Place to Grow” and it was a huge experiment for me because it’s told from the points of view of several different characters. A fictional first for me. Not sure when it’s suppose to come out yet, but I’ll update the “Publications” page when I know.

The second bit of news is that I’ll be attending the Nebula Awards in Pittsburgh this year. It’s my first time at this convention and I’m so excited! There are so many awesome works nominated this year, my final ballot is going to be a tough decision. Which is not exactly a bad problem to have.

That’s it for now. I’ll probably have another post up here soon.

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2016 Year End Post

Even in the best of times, these types of posts are always awkward for me to write. And 2016 has been a rough year on many different fronts. It feels a bit selfish to be posting this today (especially today) in the wake of all that’s happening in the world.

But terrible global events shouldn’t negate our small triumphs. So we fight on.

In terms of writing, 2016…hasn’t been bad to me. I had three short stories I’m proud of published in markets I really loved. These stories are:

They Said the DesertBeneath Ceaseless Skies, May 2016

A Non-Hero’s Guide to the Road of MonstersMothership Zeta, May 2016

Dido, RetoldStrange Horizons, September 2016

And as if that wasn’t awesome enough, “A Non-Hero’s Guide to the Road of Monsters” is going to be reprinted in Rich Horton’s The Year’s Best Science Fiction and Fantasy 2017. How cool is that?!!!!

horton-yearsbest2017-cover

(Here’s the full Table of Contents.)

I’m hoping to post a “Fiction I Loved This Year” compilation here soon. Maybe in a few weeks, when I’ve caught up a bit on my “To Be Read” pile.

Special thanks to all my friends who offered encouragement, read rough drafts, and just listened when I was frustrated. I couldn’t have done it without you.

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New Story Up at Strange Horizons

I’m excited to announce that a new story of mine called “Dido, Retold” is now live over at Strange Horizons! Please check it out here.

This is one of several stories I’ve written that attacks the traditional idea heroes and the way they warp their own narratives. Also, like my other stories, it took many, many drafts to get right.

As always, a shout out to the song I listened to as I wrote this one: “Storm Song” by Phildel.

Hope you enjoy!

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Baltimore Book Festival and New Picture

In an ongoing quest to get better at public speaking, I’m going to be a panelist at this year’s Baltimore Book Festival. It’s located at Baltimore’s Inner Harbor from September 23-25th. I’ll definitely be there Sunday (because that’s when my panels are happening) and possibly Saturday too, just to hang out and help out.

Anyways, here’s my schedule:

  • Short Fiction: The Heart of SFF – Sunday @ 1pm
    • Short works have always been important to science fiction and fantasy. Hear why and how short fiction showcases the best of our genres. Learn where the hot stories are being published, and get answers to all your questions from our panel of acclaimed short fiction writers.
  • Near Future/Far Future – Sunday @ 3pm
    • Look at what goes into science fiction that’s right around the corner versus light years ahead. How are they similar and different?What happens when fiction comes true?

 

In other news, one of my favorite things about becoming a writer is all the wonderful and talented friends I’ve made over the years. For example, my friend Steve Schultz is a writer, but in recent years has picked up photography again, specifically focusing on portraits. He’s been shooting all his friends.

So, thanks to him, I have a new author photo.

 

DSC_1245_PP01

I’m told the picture makes me look a bit mischievous. I’m quite pleased.

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A Non-Hero’s Music and Story News

So, two pieces of news. First, “A Non-Hero’s Guide to the Road of Monsters” is now live over at Mothership Zeta. Meaning you can read it for free right now!

The song that acted as the soundtrack was “The Mute” by Radical Face. Seriously, the early drafts of this story was literally just the main character’s voice and this song playing on loop.

Second, Strange Horizons is going to publish one of my stories at the end of the year! It’s called “Dido, Retold” and I’m beyond thrilled. I’ll be posting more information when I have it!

In the meantime, I’m looking for new book recommendations. What have you been reading lately? Let me know in the comments.

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Con Schedule for Summer 2016

Quick run down of where I’ll be in the next few weeks.

Balticon – Baltimore, Sunday, May 29th
4th Street Fantasy – Minneapolis, Jun 17th – June 19th
Readercon – Boston, July 7th – July 10th

I’m not on any panels this year, but I am helping out with Dangerous Voices at Balticon on Sunday.

If you happen to be at any of these cons, don’t hesitate to come say hi!

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New Story Live at Beneath Ceaseless Skies!

They Said The Desert” is now up at Beneath Ceaseless Skies for your reading (and listening) pleasure! Still can’t express how excited I am that this story’s found a home in one of my favorite magazines.

And let me tell you, this story was an exercise in tenacity. I wrote the first draft back in early 2014 as part of a contest on Codex. It was 750 words and completely terrible. Over the next year and half, I drafted and redrafted this story at least a dozen times. But I always felt like I was a half step behind where the story wanted to go.

But I caught up. I found it. (It’s now about 5k words.)

I think I went through a half dozen songs too as I was writing this. Took me a while to find the right one, to find the “sound” of the story. Finally discovered “Laredo” by Kenneth Pattengale and after that, everything started falling into place.

Anyway, enough rambling. Hope you enjoy the story!

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Story Link Love #5

I was out with some friends last night and I was asked for some short story recommendations. So, I figured it was about time I put another one of these posts together. Here are a few stories in no particular order that I’ve really enjoyed in the last few months. Hope you do too!

A Salvaging of Ghosts ” by Alliette de Bodard in Beneath Ceaseless Skies, Issue #195
The Red Mask” by Jessica May Lin in Shimmer, Issue #30
This is a Letter to My Son” by KJ Kabza in Strange Horizons, April 11th, 2016
Seven Cups of Coffee” by A. C. Wise in Clarkesworld, Issue #114
Welcome to the Medical Clinic at the Interplanetary Relay Station. Hours Since the Last Patient Death: 0” by Caroline M. Yoachim in Lightspeed, Issue #70
The Name of the Forest” by Margaret Killjoy in Strange Horizons, March 21st, 2016

P.S. Most of these stories also have podcast versions as well, if you preferred listening to your fiction.

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