Progress in Publishing

I’d love to tell you there’s a really good reason for my lack of posts, but to be honest, my reasons are the same as a lot of other people’s: Depressed financially, emotionally, physically. Yeah. The past five years have been awful in so many ways, but it scares and saddens me to talk about it, so I don’t.

All that said, this very strange post is NOT about my bouts with depression! I’m mostly doing well right now, which is why I wanted to post. I just had to get out an oblique apology/excuse for not keeping up. There ya go.

RESEARCH, EDITING AND PUBLICATION!

I’m pleased to say, despite the difficulties I’ve faced over the last five years, I never stopped writing and it’s paid off.

While “Mourn Their Courage” is on submission, I’ve continued to write for the rest of that world. While I’ve got several books in various stages, the one I’ve focused on is based (loosely) on the Maccabean revolt and the struggle for succession after Alexander the Great’s death. I’m World Building to my heart’s content and I believe I’ve carved new channels into my brain trying to internalize Shawn Coyne’s Story Grid process, but it’s a good hurt. LOL

I applied the lessons from Story Grid to my short stories as a means to learning the process faster and it worked! My short story, “Cold Heart” was published last winter in Nature Futures. Yeah! First professional sale and I did a happy dance.

Nature has a great market for flash pieces and I recommend them. They were a pleasure to work with, they pay well and they’re not your standard S.F. market, so there may be less competition.

READING RECOMMENDATIONS!

I’ve also┬áread some phenomenal books, mostly while agent searching. Naomi Novik’s “Uprooted” is wonderful and fresh (pun intended, but with apologies) but everyone knows about it. I wanted to mention some books that might be a little less on the radar, especially since they’re the sort of thing I WANT on my radar. (If you find more, let me know.) The first book was “The Bird and the Blade” by Megan Bannen. Set in Mongolia and filled with politics and kumis. What’s not to love? I can’t blather enough about this book because of the emotional reaction it elicited, but I can’t say more because I loathe spoilers. Read it yourself. You won’t regret it.

Also up there among the year’s best was “The Perfect Assassin” by K.A. Doore. The World Building in this story is so perfected, the city is part of the plot and I LOVE stories like that. The subtitle is “The Chronicles of Ghadid,” which is the name of the city, so it’s obvious she intends to return to the series, but we all know what the publishing industry is like right now. I hope she gets to go back. Heck, folks, mysteries aren’t my schtick, but for this world and this character, I’d read more mysteries. Just so you get an idea, there are jaani, (think non-wish-granting, madness-causing jinn) political machinations, drought, true love and no win scenarios.

In fact, the latter point is true of “The Bird and the Blade,” too. Both stories are so darn good and why don’t I know these authors on a first name basis? Just. Not. Fair. It’s not like I’d gate crash their writers group meeting. Yes I would. LOL

So I hope you all have had a great year thus far. If you’ve read anything good lately, please tell me!

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