From Blair Mountain to Black Hill

Merry met, my good readers. I have some excellent news. If you went to 1888’s website this weekend, you may have been greeted by my face. As some of you may recall, this summer I participated in the Summer Writing Project, an annual contest held by 1888, Black Hill Press, and JukePop. All summer long, writers serially updated novellas on everything from the escapades of wayward youth to space stations to caffeine outlawing dystopias.

My own novella was a mix of Urban Fantasy, Horror, and Historical Fiction set during the 1910s. Beneath Blair Mountain follows the story of Lara Rae Brecken, a West Viriginia girl trying to escape her fate, who finds herself face to face with the fair folk one cold October night. And, lo and behold, Beneath Blair Mountain, was one of three novellas selected by Black Hill Press for publication. Continue reading

Fey as Folk: Summer Writing Project 2015

So, as devoted readers may remember, I’m participating in the Summer Writing Project, a collaboration between serial writing venue JukePop, indie publisher Black Hill Press, and 1888center. My novella, Beneath Blair Mountain, is current holding fifth in the rankings, but I could use some love, whether you choose to read, comment, vote, share, or just give me a hearty thumbs up.

Beneath Blair Mountain is a fusion of Urban Fantasy/Horror/Mythic Fiction and Historical Fiction/American Gothic, so there should be something for everyone, whether they like myth, folk culture, rural Appalachia, dark fey, Edwardian period pieces, ghost stories, political and social commentary, Irish gunrunners, or American history. Here’s the description if you’re interested: Continue reading

Need a Summer Getaway? Try Blair Mountain

BlairMountainCover

Great news! I’m participating in the Summer Writing Project, a collaboration between JukePop, which is revitalizing the serial, and Black Hill Press, which publishes the long-neglected shortform that is the novella. What does this mean? Well, it means that you can read my novella, Beneath Blair Mountain, as I update it serially all summer. Continue reading

LARPing off the Page

Harry Potter fans are making an actual school of wizardry in an actual gods damned castle. Holy crap, guys! “The Rose of Winter” is coming true!!! For those who don’t know, “The Rose of Winter” is my post-apocalyptic story about a bunch of LARPers and Renn Faire folk who decide to live off the grid in a full-scale, working re-creation of Vintergard, the castle in their favorite fantasy series. Nope, that name definitely isn’t remotely related to Winterfell. Not in the least.

Anyway, “The Rose of Winter” has been under consideration at Tor for some time and was sent up for a second read. Here’s hoping they publish it because between Doomsday Castle and this glorious bit of madness, it’s only a matter of time before “The Rose of Winter” comes true.

Writing Prompt: The Talk

With all of the on-screen and off-screen steamy sex scenes, sexual tension, and shipping fodder in the literary world, it’s probably a good thing to know what your character is attracted to and what their romantic/sexual history is. However, fewer writers address what their character knows about sex or how they learned it. Many a YA/children’s book or memoir has been devoted to the awkward stage that is (pre-)puberty and one’s first (attempts at a) sexual encounter, but it seems largely neglected in speculative fiction, save for the occasional body horror story, supernatural transformation/gene/power activation parallel, or anything by Tamora Pierce.

This is especially important in fiction with historical, secondary world, or futuristic settings, as it is a key aspect of life and so a key aspect of worldbuilding. Thus, in the vein of that infamous Hogwarts Sex Ed fanfic and Dr. Tatiana’s Sex Advice to All Creation, I propose writing a scene in which your characters gets The Talk or a talk or otherwise discovers Their Changing Body and what this whole sex thing is about anyway. Continue reading

One Small Sentence for Man, One Giant Leap for Procrastination

The other day, Tor.com posted on Facebook about six word Fantasy/Sci-Fi stories, prompting all manner of creative responses in the comments. I went ahead and tried my hand at it. Here are a few I came up with. I encourage any and all of you to leave your own in the comments. I’d love to see what you come up with. Continue reading

The Invisible Man: speculative fiction and disability

That’s how we roll in sci-fi.

I don’t know if any of you have seen the infographic floating around about representation in science fiction movies or not, but I wanted to talk about an issue I had with it, namely what constitutes a “protagonist with a disability”. I won’t post a link to the infographic here because my intention is not to call it or its creator out. In fact, I applaud them for raising awareness of representation issues. However, I am bothered by the infographic’s problematic take on this specific issue, as well as by this discussion in general (which seems to happen every few years when there is a renewed controversy over Barbara Gordon). Continue reading