Thursday, October 12, 2023

"Awaiting the Captain's Ghost" at Story Hour

Last night I had the opportunity to do a live reading as part of the Story Hour series of speculative fiction readings which began in 2020. For October, Story Hour is focusing on spookier stories, so I decided to read my "Awaiting the Captain's Ghost." Previously this story had only been available in print anthologies (and my collection), so this is the first time this story has been freely-available online.

Also on the program is A. C. Wise with the amazing story "Death Is a Diner at 3 AM." If you check out the recording, I hope you enjoy it!

Sunday, October 1, 2023

Recent Publications & Other Notes

I've had a couple of short fantasy stories published in recent months and I wanted to share the links to them here.

"Blackwood Dragon Blues" is a fantasy caper story with a dash of humor.

The streets were clear, and I got there ten minutes early. Martha was already waiting, the red trench coat Jimmy had said she would be wearing precisely as unsubtle as it sounded.

"What's the job?" I asked as I sat.

"What do you know about dragons?"

I stood up. "Enough to know that we're done here."

She reached up, touched my arm. "Even if it's a tiny dragon?"

It was published back in May at Electric Spec, marking my third appearance there after their previous publications of "Corinne's Song" and "Waiting On a Sunny Day". This also gave me 13 consecutive years of having credited publications at the Internet Speculative Fiction Database.

My second recent publication was "1-800-PROPHCY". I had fun writing this one.

Are you kept up at night, wondering about the meaning of a cryptic sentence uttered years before you were born? Do you find yourself constantly on the lookout for figures like “the man with twelve toes” or “the woman without a name?” Do you feel trapped, not by a dead-end job or burdensome student loans, but by Fate?

This story was published by Stupefying Stories and was another return appearance with a publisher for me. "Waters of Oblivion" was published in 2014 on another Stupefying Stories site.

A few other quick notes:

  • I attended the North American Science Fiction Convention (NASFiC) this summer in Winnipeg, MB. The convention was fairly small but I participated in two well-attended panels, one on Data Privacy, and one on support for writers. I also gave a reading from my collection and had a couple of nice meals with some fellow members of a writing group.
  • If you backed the 99 Tiny Terrors Kickstarter, word is that the print editions are being shipped now! I don't have mine yet, but I'm looking forward to receiving it soon. I've had a story accepted for the editor and publisher's followup 99 Fleeting Fantasies and there should be a Kickstarter for a print edition of that in the upcoming months.
  • Finally, I'm planning to attend the 2024 Worldcon in Glasgow and hope to be able to participate on panels and do a reading there. I'll know more about that next year.

Sunday, November 20, 2022

2022 Awards Eligibility Post

The year is coming to a close and I don't expect to have any additional publications between now and the end of the year, so I thought it as good a time as any to put together my Awards Eligibility post for 2022. By far, the thing I'm most excited to have published this year is my collection At the Intersection of Love and Death. There are only a handful of awards which have categories for short fiction collections, but for anyone who is planning to vote in one of those awards, I hope you'll consider my collection when you're nominating and/or voting. (The primary ones I'm aware of which are voted on, rather than juried/judged, are the Locus Awards and the British Fantasy Awards.) In addition to my collection, I had four short stories published this year, three of which are available to be read for free online.

"Blackwater Sound" at Daily Science Fiction (fantasy)
The sun was below the horizon and dusk quickly fading as Lee Cortez pulled his truck off the road into the gravel parking strip separating Highway 1 from the quiet depths of Blackwater Sound. He yanked a ratty camp chair from the truck bed then went back to the front. He hesitated over a pile of mementos, reaching out, then pulling back. Finally, he grabbed just his cooler and headed down to the shore.
"A Book in Winter" at Factor Four (fantasy)
There’s a book on my bookshelf, “Green Summer, Orange Leaves, Purple Lives” by Gina Marshall, a library book I checked out years ago and never managed to return. It sits there, nestled between a handful of cookbooks I’ve acquired over the years and failed to use and the Bible I was given on the day of my first Communion.
"Carolina" at Haven Spec (fantasy)
Randy Joe Eastman popped a few aspirin in his mouth and swallowed them with a mouthful of last night's coffee. Two in the afternoon and he still wasn't dressed for the day. But, hell, that'd been most of the last twenty-nine years, driving from city to city, playing a night or two at whatever club or bar or honkytonk would pay him enough to keep him going. There'd been those two years—nineteen and a half months, actually—back before grunge broke out of Seattle when an actual label had carried him and he'd been on something vaguely other than his own. Those days were so far gone that he often felt like they belonged to someone else.
"The Last of That Strange Wine" at The Colored Lens (fantasy) - (Available on Amazon)
The ferryman sipped the last of his ouzo and waved me over.

"I'll take another," he said as I walked the length the bar. I grabbed a bottle and gave him a long pour. He raised his glass to me, then brought it to his lips.

"I'm tired of coins, you know," he said.

I knew, but just gave him a questioning look.

"What use are they to me?" He drank the last drops from his refilled glass and stood. "I don't even need them here."

It was true. All our drinks were free.

If you enjoy one or more of these stories and are a member of SFWA, you can recommend them to others on the Recommended Reading list.

Saturday, August 27, 2022

Almost Worldcon Time!

Next week I'll be in Chicago for the World Science Fiction Convention (aka Worldcon aka Chicon 8). I've been to a number of science-fiction conventions in the past, but never to a Worldcon and I'm excited to get to go. While I'm there, I'll be on a couple of panels (one virtual) and giving a reading from my brand new collection! 

Speaking of the collection, I'll also be doing a launch party for it on Friday evening, so if you're going to be at the convention I hope you'll stop by and have a snack or a drink (or both) and help celebrate my new book. I'll announce more about the launch party on Twitter, so you can follow me there for important details (like the room number). Naturally, I'll have copies of the book with me at the show for anyone who'd like to take one home.

I'm looking forward to seeing folks I've met in the past and meeting folks I've only known online (and folks I haven't met at all yet). If you'll be at Worldcon, here's the schedule of my events. (The link on the schedule image should take you to my program participant page on the convention site.)

Friday, July 1, 2022

Coming This Summer...

I'm thrilled to announce that my first short story collection, At the Intersection of Love and Death, will be coming out this summer! There are some details below but for now, let's look at the amazing cover that Jay O'Connell created for the book.
So, details... The book consists of 26 of my stories across the speculative fiction genres of science fiction, fantasy, and horror. I'll be launching it in early September at Worldcon in Chicago (with plans to do a book launch party there). I'm intending to do an event in Columbus in September as well, for folks who are local. For those who won't be at Worldcon or in Central Ohio, I'll be posting information here this summer about how to order signed, numbered copies. 

Speaking of Worldcon, I'll be on programming there. I don't have my schedule yet, but as soon as I do, I'll share it here. 

That's it for now; more to come soon!

Friday, January 14, 2022

Updates All Around

This site hasn't gotten a lot of attention in recent years. From time to time, I'd update my Publications page to add new entries or remove dead links, but that was about it and even then I'd frequently only get updates in months after the fact. Today, I went through and did a clean-up all around. The Publications page is all up-to-date and includes a bit of explanatory text about where to expect links to take you and I updated my Biography page as well. In the sidebar, there's now a working Twitter widget to replace the broken one, and instead of most-recent publications, I'm now choosing to spotlight some of my favorites.

Speaking of recent publications, a couple which I'll note here are "Three Things Cameron Couldn't Tell You" (free to read) which Daily Science Fiction published a year ago tomorrow and "Spending Time" in the 99 Tiny Terrors anthology. I'm pleased to have a story in that anthology since I've always really enjoyed collections of very-short stories. I grew up reading books with titles like 100 Great Science Fiction Short Short Stories after all. (Which reminds me that I've been reading, writing, and submitting for publication what we now call Flash Fiction since before that term even existed and they were just called "short short stories"...) Unfortunately the anthology is only available as an eBook and only through several eBook providers, not including Amazon, but if you enjoy very short stories, I hope you'll track it down.

Part of the reason that this site hasn't been as active recently is because I haven't been doing as much writing and submitting, but I've still been doing some, and earlier this week I found out that two of my stories have been accepted for publication. "Carolina" will be appearing on Haven Spec's site next week and I'll get a link to it up here once it's live; the other one I'll announce once the contract is finalized.

This weekend starts the Codex Writers' Group's annual Weekend Warrior flash fiction writing competition. I'm really looking forward to getting some new stories written over the next five weekends and hopefully I'll have more good news to announce later in the year!

Saturday, March 17, 2018

Some Newish Publications of Newish Stories

So, it's been a while since I've posted anything here. Despite that fact, I have been doing some writing from time to time and have continued sending stories out on submission. I'll have a few posts coming up to highlight some sales/publications; this one focuses on three stories I wrote in early 2017, all of which have since been published.

These stories all came out of an annual flash fiction competition held by the Codex Writers Group. I wrote a total of five stories in the span of a bout a month during that competition and was pleased with all of them. These are the first three to have been published:

"How to Choose" was published by Nature in May of 2017.
"She always asks for two out of three, three out of five. No one ever wins, no one ever loses, and more time trickles past."

"Who Wants to Live Forever?" was published by Daily Science Fiction in July of 2017.
"Which of them had taken the test and been told, like their son, that they were unable to receive the process? That they would forever stay as mortal as the day they were born?"

Finally, "Death Rides Shotgun" was published by Galaxy's Edge earlier this month.
"Joseph took it as a bad sign when he exited the office of the motel he’d stayed in just outside Scipio, Utah, and found Death sitting in the passenger seat of his midnight black convertible Corvette."
I hope you enjoy these stories if you get the chance to read them. Before too long, I plan to write up a post about some recent anthology publications as well as a new publication of a quite old story.