So it’s the end of the day and I just remembered that my latest story, “Troubleshooting Your Doomsday Device,” came out from T Gene Davis’s Speculative Blog, and here’s another link to it! This is my first time appearing on Gene’s blog, and I’m pleased this story found a home there.
“Troubleshooting” is one-half of a conversation entirely from the perspective of the helpdesk operator talking poor Dr Dreadful through properly detonating his doomsday device. The title came from a Title Rummage Sale contest on Codex, an online writing forum, while the POV choice was inspired by “Half a Conversation, Overheard While Inside An Enormous Sentient Slug,” a marvelously funny story that I recommend you read right now. RIGHT NOW.
Also, if you haven’t read “Leslie’s Love Potion #4,” it’s still free to read at Galaxy’s Edge for another week or so. The link won’t exactly self-destruct on September 1, but after the end of August the link will send you to the newest issue and you’ll need to buy issue #21 to read my story, which looks like this:
I do not recommend actually trying to make Leslie’s Love Potion #4 unless you’re a fully trained witch/warlock. Sorry, kids.
In other Dantzel news, July was a busy month for sales! It’s feast or famine around here, I’m telling you. Contracts have been signed and all that so I feel free to mention I sold three reprints and three originals. WHEEEEEE! “Troubleshooting Your Doomsday Device” was one of those originals. In the coming months you can find my dark SF story “The Fascinator” in the Dark Magic: Witches, Hackers, and Robots anthology, and “A Vocabulary of Remorse” in the Science Fiction and the Medical Humanities Short Story Contest Anthology, which is another SF story, though decidedly less dark than “The Fascinator.” The announcement for the short list is here. Maybe the Sci-Fi and the Med Hum antho will have a different title – I’ll update when I know.
As for reprints, “Love, Your Wolpertinger” sold TWICE to reprint markets. Soon you’ll be able to read it in Truancy, a lovely magazine that seeks out legends and fairy tales, and listen to it on The Way of the Buffalo Podcast, a super cool podcast that is quite easy to subscribe to. Finally, “Birthing Fire” will be reprinted in the Mad Scientist Journal in the spring. It’s perfect story-to-market matches like this that tell me the world is a decent place.
That’s quite enough updates for now.
So having a baby really takes away your free time, doesn’t it? Roz is nearly 3 months old, and my writing output has been… sad. Very sad. In addition to teaching dance and Pilates approximately 30 hours a week, there’s just too many diapers to change. Too much spit-up to clean up. Too many sleepless nights. Too many moments that she’s smiling at me and I Must. Take. Picture.
She’s a fantastic cuddler.
I’d planned on having my novel ready for WorldCon, but – well, HA! That didn’t happen, and I have to be okay with that.
But really, who couldn’t be okay spending all day with someone like this?
So it is what it is.
I’m just going to go and enjoy my time. I met tons of awesome people last year, and I think this year’s going to be just as great. And, you know, if someone’s interested in a partially finished middle-grade underwater fantasy with mermaids, dragons, witches, and narwhal horns, well, they can come talk to me.
in other news, I made a sale to Fireside! (Like, over a month ago. My friends on Facebook heard about it, so there’s that. But we’ve already gone over the baby thing.) I’m very pleased to have a story with this magazine. Brian White, the editor, is great to work with and there are tons of fantastic writers also appearing this year in Fireside. My issue isn’t coming out until March 2014, but I’m okay to wait. There’s always more writing to do and other stories to sell.
And diapers to change.
As a final note, I’m starting a wellness feature on my blog because I absolutely LOVE Pilates and what it’s done for me and my students, and I think everyone can benefit from Pilates, especially with all the time we spend reading on our computers, tablets, and smartphones. I’ll be talking about posture, the proper way to engage muscles and hold positions, and short, sweet ways to strengthen your body as well as different relaxation techniques.
ALL FOR THE PRICE OF ZERO DOLLARS. Because this is a blog, and you get it for free.
Unless you wanted to pay me. I’m sure one of these days I’ll link Paypal to this blog or something.
Well, that’s it. I’ve got writing to do while Roz sleeps. If you see me at WorldCon, come say hello! It’s highly likely you’ll see Roz wearing a steampunk hat or something else equally precious.
With getting ready for Baby Cherry and the increase of time spent teaching and attending dance competitions lately, I have not only neglected to post much here, but I didn’t even mention I sold my story, “Opportunity on a Dusty Road,” to Azure Keep Quarterly two weeks ago. It’s a story that was inspired by an event when Merrit and I were moving from Idaho to Texas about a year and a half ago. I waited about a year to write the story, and it turned out about as fun and light as I’d planned it. I’m glad it found a good home at AKQ.
The story should be published sometime in June/July, so I’ll update when it comes out.
I also discovered tonight that Penumbra published my guest blog back at the end of March! I talk about how my love for reading and writing speculative fiction started. Here’s the link if you want to check it out:
So I’ve already gleefully announced this via Facebook and Twitter, but I made my first professional sale last Thursday night!
Penumbra Magazine bought my flash story, “The Business is Dying” for their Zombie Apocalypse issue (coming out next month), and I couldn’t be more thrilled. From the emails with Celina the head editor and the speediness with which they sent my contract (I hear they pay promptly as well), I can tell that this is a great publishing family to be a part of. I’d love to work with them again – so it looks like I need to get cracking on some more short stories.
“The Business is Dying” is a zombie story, of all things. While I totally love my story and had one of those “I think i can sell this” feelings about it immediately after writing it, it’s funny that my first sale ever, let alone at professional rates, was a cliche that has been saturating the market for years now, including Penumbra. Apparently there were over 600 submissions for this particular issue. THAT was a fun tidbit from the acceptance email that made my inner kitty purr.
One last note on my sale is that, after a few beta readers took a look at this story, I rewrote the beginning and made a few changes in the middle and end to better reflect the changes at the beginning, but I still prefer the original beginning, info dump and all. I’m not going to question my decision to change the stuff that I found so amusing, though, because clearly making those changes didn’t hurt me at all – that what Celina read and that’s what she bought. There’s no guarantee that she or anyone else would have found my intro as humorous as I did, and I definitely think the opening as it will be published develops the setting and characters more. So there’s that.
Selling this story at the beginning of the year like this is clearly a sign that I need to make 2013 a stellar year. I plan to keep up the momentum by writing at least 6 new short stories, continuing to submit my short stories as usual, finishing my middle grade fantasy novel and taking it through at least one round of edits, and – oh yes – giving birth.