Thursday, January 8, 2015

Five Questions: "The Unofficial Guide to Travelling With Kin"

My first original story in a year has dropped. "The Unofficial Guide to Travelling with Kin" is now available online and in glossy print format in Betwixt Magazine Issue 6. This issue also contains a story by another Clarionite, Gabriela Santiago of the 2013 class. Much thanks to editor Joy Creslin for publishing my second story for Betwixt. It's a nifty magazine going places.

So let's dive into my Five Questions format for some brain pickings over how this story came to be.

Friday, January 2, 2015

Happy New Year! "The Unofficial Guide to Travelling With Kin" now live at Betwixt Magazine.

Cover of Issue 6 Betwixt Magazine
A futuristic city of spires, with floating
New Year, new story release! Isn't that a great way to kick off?

My road story "The Unofficial Guide to Travelling With Kin" is now available in issue 6 of Betwixt Magazine. You can read it online, and buy a physical hard copy of the magazine. Check out the beautiful cover art by Alex Tooth. Very festive!

What do a unicorn named Bruce, a werewolf called Princess, a Dragon called Boh, and a mermaid called Late For Lunch all have in common? They're four of the crypto-menagerie who hitch a ride with a stranger. They all have something in common - they're running from something to anywhere, and they only have each other to look out for on the road. It's eat or be eaten in "Unofficial Guide".


Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Hey, It's: a 2014 In Review Post

Ann and Jeff Vandermeer wear silly
hats to add some well needed levity
to week five of an intense, exhausting
Clarion experience
This year has been the weirdest since I began my writing journey.

It's been a massive success with a goal I didn't set and a massive failure against the goals I did set, all at the same time.

I wanted to better my story sales numbers. In 2013 I had eleven original stories published, three of which were my first ever pro sales. I thought if 2013 was any indication of momentum, I'd be well on my way.

This year I only had one original story published (way back in January), and one reprint. However, it was a reprint I was absolutely stoked to earn, because it was in a venue I've very much wanted to be in for many years (Heiresses of Russ).

If Clarion hadn't happened, 2014 would have been a disaster, I would have seriously been considering chucking in the towel, and wondering what the heck is wrong with my work.

But I'm not. Because Clarion CHANGED EVERYTHING.

It's five months on and I'm still capslocking about Clarion. It was honestly the best thing that ever happened to my career so far. Clarion introduced me to a bunch of incredible people who are now there for me until the end of my writing life, and gave me a huge boost to the next level of improving my game. I won't go into details - have a read back over my Clarion posts for all the deets.

The offshoot of Clarion is that I gained two very important groups of critical readers. I now have a core of beta readers from my Clarion class and a network of editors interested in my work, and a group of local writers who I meet with once a month to critique stories we're working on.

Hell Yeah, Heiresses of Russ 2014
with ME IN IT. I'm an heiress of one
of my writing heroes.
My local group - we call ourselves "CLAM" for in-joke reasons - is also a great cheerleading and social squad. I don't feel so alone in the writing world anymore, which can be a concern for writers like myself outside the hub and convention circuit. My local group is keeping me on track, and I'm very grateful for their energy and motivation. It's giving me the opportunity to keep using the critiquing skills I learned at Clarion and a better focus to my stories.

Rediscovering my energy post-Clarion has slowed down my production somewhat. I'm more intent on making things right before I send out a story. This has been a concern to me (see: OMG I've only had two stories published this year), but it's almost like rebooting or refocusing my career. Once things clarify, once I start making some bigger sales/impacts on the industry again, things will happen.

And I'm absolutely positive they will. I have my down moments and doubts, especially with rejections, but it's all part of the process. 2015 won't be the same as 2014 - nothing could ever replace the greatness of Clarion - but it will be DIFFERENT. I already have three original publications to look forward to - the first tomorrow! - I have many stories I'm working on, and I'm absolutely aiming to break into certain favoured venues and make more pro sales.

So come on 2015, whatcha got for me?

Monday, December 15, 2014

Narration: Podcastle "Burying The Coin" by Setsu Uzume

Ahh! I can't believe I forgot to put this up here when it went live!

Anywho, Podcastle requested my dulcet tones once more, and this was a fun read. Lots of juicy anti-imperialist steampunk to sink my teeth into.

So click on over to listen to Setsu Uzume's "Burying the Coin" at Podcastle. (47 minutes)

Sunday, November 16, 2014

SJV nomination time

Once more award season has rolled around!

2014 has been a reasonably quiet affair publication wise, so I will have at least one, hopefully two stories available for nomination.

The first is the short story "The Dragon in the Wardrobe", which appeared in Betwixt Magazine's January issue.

The second could be the novelette "Long's Confandabulous Carnival and Clockwork Circus, and Cats of Many Persuasions", which will be appearing in issue 61 of Andromeda Spaceways Inflight Magazine. This issue is slated for release in December, so hopefully it will be out in time to make the December 31 cut-off for the SJVs at least.

For nomination guidelines for New Zealand's Sir Julius Vogel Awards, check out the SFFANZ website.

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Sale: "The Unofficial Guide to Travelling with Kin", Betwixt Magazine

I'm pleased to announce I've sold my second story to Betwixt Magazine.

"The Unofficial Guide to Travelling with Kin", a road trip story where the hitchhikers are more than meets the eye, will appear in the January 2015 issue of Betwixt Magazine.

Betwixt published "The Dragon in the Wardrobe" earlier this year.

Happy Cat is happy

Monday, October 6, 2014

My Clarion Class, Doing Things

My classmates from Clarion are a really interesting bunch, so I'm going to blather about them for a bit.

I can't wait to find out where all their careers are going, there is some truly prodigious talent amongst them all. Already four of them have been tapped to appear in Tor's short fiction pages next year (one of my bucket list places to be published), so I'm really excited for you to read some of their stories which were written at the workshop.

Here's Nino Cipri's online home, and a story they recently had published in Betwixt, "The Literal Forest". O hai, Betwixt homey! *fist bump*

Martin Cahill has been blogging about the Clarion experience, and is up to Week Four now. Also, have a read of his horror story "It Was Never The Fire" over at Nightmare magazine.

Vida Cruz has also blogged about Clarion, and you'll find here writerly, muse-filled home right here. She has lots of interesting things to say about international SFF.

Kayla Whaley has a run down of her Clarion experience (Much Karaoke. So Squee), and she was also recently interviewed about disability and diversity in YA.

Sarena Ulibarri has been busy since Clarion and has a few stories out or coming out soon. Her online home is here. Some stories of hers include "Half Life" at KYSO Flash, "It Pours" at The CafĂ© Irreal, and "The Bolt Tightener" at Lightspeed.

Haralambi Markov can be found in a variety of anthologies (and Tor!). Here is his online home, where he blogs reviews, musings, and things of writerly fascination, and try a taster of his weird style with "The Fungi That Talk Softly" from Electric Velocipede.

Marian Womack blogs here, with a keen interest in Spanish language SFF. Can't wait for more of her work to be read the world over!

Ryan Campbell has a book out called "God of Clay", and it's available here from Sofa Wolf Press.

A couple of classmates currently curating on tumblr, including their writerly stylings, are Ellie Rhymer and Kristen Roupenian.

That's 10 of the 17 people I'll shout to the skies about forever and a day, because a few of them have yet to create an online presence for their writing work, but I'll keep you up to date with their work as it happens.

Just remember, Clarion 2014: The Future of Speculative Fiction. Potential Hugo Award Winners. You heard it here.