June and July have been very good to me: a lot of good things happened, after a spring when I occasionally felt like it was difficult to write, or at least difficult to know if the words I was stringing together were good words. It made me think of one of my favourite Stephen King quotes (one I’d like to have framed and pinned on my wall):
“Sometimes you have to go on when you don’t feel like it, and sometimes you’re doing good work when it feels like all you’re managing is to shovel shit from a sitting position.”
Stories released into the wild
My science fiction-ish story ‘Bioluminescence’ is part of a terrific TOC in Phobos Issue Four: Deep Black Sea (with a gorgeous cover by artist Abigail Larson). This issue is now available in print: buy it from Amazon.
My alien invasion story ‘Long As I Can See The Light’ (first published in the anthology ‘People Are Strange‘) appeared in the terrific podcast The Overcast. I was really pleased with how well it turned out! Listen to the podcast, and consider supporting The Overcast on Patreon.
‘Long As I Can See The Light’ was also featured at the new Reading Nook at Quiet Fury Books. This is a great place to read some fantastic fiction, and thanks to Darcia Helle for putting this together!
Kaleidotrope picked up my story ‘The Guitar Hero’ for publication in a future issue. This is a special story for me for several reasons: it takes place in the world of rock’n’roll, and features two women who have been friends for decades (kind of a Scooby Doo gang of two). I received an assist from Australian guitarist Graham Greene when writing this story, shaping some riff-related dialogue… Can’t wait to share it!
My flash fiction piece won the Bracken Magazine flash fiction contest (judged by the wonderful Gwendolyn Kiste)! Sticking to the limit of 350 words was a challenge, but it was also a lot of fun. The story will be appearing in the new issue of Bracken.
Polar Borealis Magazine picked up one of my poems! It will be appearing in the next issue of the magazine.
I sold a story to Cast of Wonders! It will be appearing as part of Cast of Wonders’ Banned Books Week showcase! This is a real thrill: it’s a fantastic podcast, and I wrote this story specifically for the Banned Books Week submission call. The story was inspired by my kids, and I’m so happy it was picked up!
Beneath Ceaseless Skies (one of my favourite publications as a reader), accepted my strange and weird story ‘The Root Cellar’ for publication in a future issue. This is such an odd little story, and I am eternally grateful to editor Scott H. Andrews for believing in this tale, and for his very thoughtful and very helpful edits.
I also sold my flash fiction story ‘Ten Things I Didn’t Do’ to Pseudopod. It will appear on the podcast sometime next year. Pseudopod is all kinds of awesome, and I’m thrilled that this story found such a great home. This is a story that was painful to write, and I tried in vain to “lighten it”… but it held on to its darkness, and for good reason I suppose.
At the end of July I also had another story acceptance: details forthcoming as soon as the contract is signed!
My story ‘The Machine of the Devil’ (published in the May issue of Flash Fiction Online), received a fantastic review by Martin Crooks: “the remarkable thing is how much of a panoramic horizon unfolds from a single snap-shot“. Martin shares great reviews and reading recommendations on a regular basis, so you should definitely check out his website.
My story ‘Scent’ (published in Flash Fiction Online in September, 2016) got a very nice mention in A.C. Wise’s wonderful blog post about great fiction by Canadian writers: read the whole list.
My monthly short fiction roundup was mentioned by Jason Sizemore in Apex Magazine! I’m so grateful for the mention, and humbled to be included in the company of outstanding writers and reviewers like A.C. Wise and Charles Payseur.
Bits and bobs
- My Spotify playlist won the Summer Mixtape contest at Syntax & Salt. You can find my list, and some other great playlists for writing inspiration, at Syntax & Salt’s Inspiration page. The playlist is on Spotify and it includes some of my favourite tracks to listen to while I write.
- I’m currently running a Goodreads giveaway: you can enter to win one of three paperback copies of my short story collection ‘Odin’s Eye’. The giveaway is my way of celebrating the release of Graham Greene’s single ‘The Gates of Balawat’ – a track that was inspired by my short story by the same name! This definitely counts as one of the coolest things that have ever happened to me as a writer!
- ‘Tales from Alternate Earths’, the wonderful alternate history anthology from Inklings Press that includes my story ‘Tunguska, 1987’, is now available in paperback: get it from Amazon.