Saturday, June 29, 2013

Great Expectations for July

July is going to be a great month for releases.
  • On July 1, my story "Situation Vacant, Apply Within" goes live at Interstellar Fiction
  • On July 12, I'm attending the release party at Au Contraire for "Regeneration: New Zealand Speculative Fiction II" (pre-orders available now) which includes "The Origami Tree"
  • On July 15, Crossed Genres Magazine 2.0 Book 1 anthology will be released, including a reprint of "Second Skin" from Issue 6
  • Date is TBA, "The Mary-Jane Effect" will be released at Wily Writers

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Sale: "The Mary-Jane Effect" to Wily Writers

When I started 2013, one of my goals was to make another pro sale, building on my success from last year. And now, here we are, I've smashed that goal and I've made number three!

"The Mary-Jane Effect" has won the Wily Writers SpecFicNZ Short Fiction Competition for 2013, and will be appearing in audio and written form in July.

I'm over the moon about this because I believe "Mary-Jane" is my best story to date, and it's going to a fantastic venue. I wrote about the story last year in my "Next Big Thing" post, so you can get some inkling of what the story is about. I'm really looking forward to being able to share this story, it means a lot to me.

And now, it's time for the Kermit flail gif!

Saturday, June 22, 2013

When a Review Does It's Job Well

Check out this incredible review of "Menial: Skilled Labor in Science Fiction" by Benjamin Gabriel over at Strange Horizons.

I am super impressed at the intricate reading Gabriel has taken upon themself. This is the sort of critique that makes me want to be a better writer - it picked out the worst and best parts of my story, and gave it a thoughtful analysis that makes me go "Yisssss *fist pump* somebody got what I was trying to do, however clumsy and imperfect!".
By using the aesthetic of technological extrapolation to convey the content of sociological extrapolation, the point of "Diamonds in the Rough" becomes not just to tell itself, but to function as a critique of the political economy of science fiction.
This critique frames the anthology historically; Fitzwater's story employs Golden Age tropes in the service of a deconstruction of the way that period tended to obscure and ignore the social relations that conditioned its own production and distribution, and so the anthology as a whole takes the tone of this critique.
Thank you Benjamin Gabriel. That's some real awesome-sauce.

Thursday, June 20, 2013

The Beat Goes On: Kumbaya Mode, The Tone Argument, and Stompy Godzilla Socks

I sat on this one for a day because...I'm still broken like that. I might look like I'm all Pulling Up The Stompy Godzilla Socks, but deep inside I'm still immersed in the system, still unpacking what it means to be a Good Girl and not be the Good Girl all at the same time, still caught by The Noise.

Who are you? Who are you, to think you're anything in this industry? You haven't even made the pre-requisite to join SFWA yet, and here you are, thinking you can have an opinion on how things go? You're a tadpole, you're not professional, you're not being nice, and you know what happens to girls who aren't nice. They don't get anywhere. Hells, I know I invoke Joanna Russ far too often, but she's my bloody patronus. And she's sitting on my other shoulder, giving the stink eye.

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

365 Project: Stories Read as of 16/6/2013

Stories read this week are by Sabrina Vourvoulias, Micaela Morrissette, Melissa Mead, Sam Barnhart, and Sarah Monette/Elizabeth Bear.

Monday, June 17, 2013

What Shall We Do With a Drunken Sailor: Racism All Up in My Thang

Again. Again again againagainagainagainagainagain.

*pinch nose* Please humanity. Please SFF community. Can we please grow up and fix these things? Because I'm pretty sure the altruistic aliens haven't visited us not because of distances but because we can't even clean up our back yard.

A couple weeks ago, the grumplesnort surrounding SFWA was the discussion of sexism. The discussion, while started by something nose pinchingly bad, has been positive. Lots of great women are standing up and telling their stories, while others are standing up and doing something about it from within.

Then a woman I highly respect, NK Jemisin, stood up and told another story, a great story, one that needs to repeated often, and called for Reconciliation within SFF.

Monday, June 10, 2013

365 Project: Stories read as of 9/6/2013

Stories read this week include Bonnie Jo Stufflebeam, Theordora Goss, Sarah Gray, Laura J. Underwood, and Shannon Peavey.

Saturday, June 8, 2013

Five Questions: "Second Skin", Crossed Genres Magazine Issue 6, June 2013

Annnd he's back. My internal blog narrator PT has been rattling the cage door, because he knows it's that time again: time for Five Questions With Teh Author about writerly things. Stand back, I'm flicking the lock...

PT: WHOOP THERE I IS! Flowers, chocolates, glitter, thank you thank you all. I'm here to be fabulous.

AF: Ahem.

PT: Oh yeah, and talk to you too. If I must. So what's on the agenda today? Ohhh yissss, your story "Second Skin" that just came out in Crossed Genres Magazine. So, the first question is...this is nothing but Downton Abbey fan fiction with the serial numbers filed off, isn't it?

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Monday, June 3, 2013

Genre Girl Cooties, Part One Billion: Bitches Get Stuff Done

If you're a woman, non-gender binary, or genderqueer person writer or reader of speculative fiction, then I have your back.

Because seriously, fuck this noise. Again. Don't like my un-ladylike language? Fuck that noise too.

The SFWA, the union I would like to join once I am eligible, has a member's magazine that has been used by a couple of Old Loud White Dudes as a platform to shit on the "ladies" (their term, and loaded with insinuation) of our genre. Not only that, over the last few issues there has been cover art featuring scantily clad fantasy ladies. Some people tried to raise concerns and counter these OLWD, but the pot boiled over this last week when the women and their allies had had enough.

"Regeneration": Pre-sale and Gorgeous Cover Art!

The anthology "Regeneration: New Zealand Speculative Fiction II", to be published by Random Static, is being released on July 12th. I'll be attending the release party taking place on the first evening of Au Contraire.

I'm proud to have my story "The Origami Tree" be a part of a table of contents that includes all these authors: Matt Cowens, Tim Jones, Mary Brock Jones, O.J. Cade, Grace Bridges, I.K. Paterson-Harkness, Kylie Thorne, Debbie Cowens, J.C. Hart, Jennifer Compton, Simon Petrie, Anna Smith, Rebecca Harris, Elizabeth Gatens, Jonathan James Todd, Fran Atkinson, Anna Caro, Dan Rabarts, Lee Murray, Grant Stone, and Toni Wi.

The pre-sale is now available - purchase a paperback for $24.95 (with free ebook) or the ebook for $9.95.

Check out the incredible cover art, done by Kapiti based artist Emma Weakley. Love at first sight for a futuristic Wellington Harbour:

Cover Art for "Regeneration":
 a twisting tree-like building rises from the waters of a harbour,
set against the backdrop of glowing city set amongst hills

Sunday, June 2, 2013

"Second Skin" now out, Crossed Genres Magazine #6, June 2013

It's a release day!

My story "Second Skin" is now available to read online in Crossed Genres Magazine #6. The issue focuses on the theme of "She". What is woman? What makes a woman?

I'm honoured to have my second pro sale featured alongside authors Shay Darrach (editor of "Menial") and Lucia Starkey.