Awards nomination season is upon us, so here’s a list of my stories published in 2018.
“An Accidental Coven” (fantasy; 1,500 words) in Syntax & Salt, September 2018. Three women arrive at a party in identical dresses. Their reaction combines with everyone’s expectations of them to create a storm front of unintentional spellcasting. Judging by the extremely heartening reviews and recommendations, this one hit home for a lot of readers.
“Nonpareil” (horror; 4,500 words) in Tales from the Lake, Vol. 5, ed. Kenneth W. Cain, November 2018. Maisie will make a wedding cake for anybody who can pay…even mysterious clients getting married for mysterious reasons. A traditional horror story with modern sensibilities.
As copy editor for Shimmer, I had the tremendous honor of working on other writers’ fabulous stories. 2018 is Shimmer’s final year, and this established semi-pro magazine yielded a bumper crop of the weird and the wondrous. A few of my favorites follow. I limited myself to one per issue, which was really difficult.
“Black Fanged Thing” by Sam Rebelein, Shimmer, January 2018. An all-too-perfect little American town hides a sad secret. I coined the term “mid-century sinister” to describe the story. Jerome Bixby would have been proud of this one.
“The Imitation Sea” by Lora Gray, Shimmer, March 2018. The dead angel is probably the weirdest part, but working through the relationship with a departed friend is what brings this story home.
“Gone to Earth” by Octavia Cade, Shimmer, May 2018. An astronaut returns from Mars and finds himself changed in ways no one had anticipated. A sharp-edged meditation on identity and home.
“Rapture” by Meg Elison, Shimmer, July 2018. The life of writings becomes the writer’s afterlife in this crisply written story. Lovely.
“Lighthouse Waiting” by Gwendolyn Clare, Shimmer, September 2018. Much in the spirit of Murderbot, the Lighthouse is a constructed entity that is very human in its behaviors and emotions.
“Ghosts of Bari” by Wren Wallis, Shimmer, November 2018. Because the final issue of Shimmer is a long issue (triple the usual length for less than half the usual price), this last story is currently available only as part of the $4.99 issue. This story won’t post for free reading until April 2019, and I would love to see it get the reads and the nominations it deserves. “Ghosts of Bari” is about a crew of scavengers who find a peculiar relic. Sad, sweet, sometimes harshly real, this tale tells more than one story.
Shimmer’s final year of publication is its final year of eligibility for everything (the Best Semiprozine Hugo, for instance). I also think it’s high time the doughty E. Catherine Tobler got some recognition for her long time at the editing helm. For founding editor Beth Wodzinski, there are no awards but our thanks.
* I know “postening” isn’t a word. My use of this non-word in no way reflects on my copy editing skills. Honest.