It’s the end of December, and that means it’s time for a review of what I’ve had published in 2016!
If you’re reading for award-nominating purposes, all but one of these are eligible for the Hugo and Nebula short story categories, with one that’s only Hugo-eligible this year. Please do let me know if you need a reading copy of anything that’s behind a paywall.
Although I like everything I’ve published this year, I’ll mention my personal favourites first. After that, stories are listed in the order they appeared.
I hope you enjoy reading!
“How I Became Coruscating Queen of All the Realms, Pierced the Obsidian Night, Destroyed a Legendary Sword, and Saved My Heart’s True Love”
by Baker & Dovey (Hugo-eligible)
This story, co-written with my occasional consciousness-sharing friend Matt Dovey follows the misadventures of Essandra, the smart-ass wielder of the legendary/cursed sword Hrrnngnngrrrndr (the Sword of a Hundred Thousand Agonies, several of which probably involve spelling the damn thing) particular affection for typical gender roles and a significant amount of affection for untold riches, as she tries to defeat the Mad Wizard-King and make of with his treasure—all while fending off the unasked-for romantic overtures of fellow adventurers Korgar the Jhunken Barbarian (of the bulging muscles) and Elutriel the priest (of the silken skin and alluring hair). Will she finally find true love (and grab lots of loot?), and what the hell’s the deal with Hrrnngnngrrrndr?
This story is in Alliteration Ink’s No Shit, There I Was anthology edited by Alex Acks, which is out sometime in the near future. However, since it’s already been released to the 500 or so Kickstarter backers, it’s already Hugo-eligible. If you’re reading for awards, send me an e-mail and I’d be happy to provide you with a copy of the story or an e-ARC of the anthology (sans art). Note that it’s not Nebula-eligible until it actually releases more widely. You can read the first hundred or so words at Baker & Dovey’s website and, again, I’m happy to provide an e-ARC. The story will also be available in audio from PodCastle whenever the anthology releases.
“Just Another Night at the Abandoned Draft Bar and Grill”
I like to refer to this little story-thing as Feminist metafiction. I’d be lying if I said I didn’t write it partly in response to a certain Hugo-related kerfluffle, but I’d like to think it appeals to anyone who’s struggled through a clichéd and hackneyed story—either as writer or reader. The story follows Alexandra, an unfortunate victim of lazy characterization (and fridging) as she and fellow novel characters François (AKA African Henchman #1) and Wong the Inscrutable try to force their author to change his stupid plot and finally finish a first draft so they can be free of his inanity. Does it work? You’ll have to read the story to find out.
It was published in the May 2016 issue of Galaxy’s Edge, where it can still be read for free online thanks to the glory of the Wayback Machine. (And hey, while you’re there, check out Tina Gower’s awesome “This is Home. You are Well.”
Full Bibliography for 2016
- “Images Across a Shattered Sea” , Writers of the Future, volume 32, May 4th 2016 – For at least a hundred years, message-globes have carried messages from a long-dead civilization across the Shattered Sea. But then one day Fatima and Driss find a globe that appears to be recording them instead. . .
This was my first-place winner in Writers of the Future, and my most-reprinted piece of the year as well, with a free-to-read text version at Kasma SF in November and a playable IF version in Sub-Q in July, and an audio version from the Overcast which just went live on December 27th!.
- “The View from Driftwise Spindle” , IGMS, July 9 2016 – When a rogue planetoid sends huge chunks of Mars hurtling towards Earth, the co-administrators of Driftwise Spindle, Gayatri and Ang, must deal with shareholders, international incidents, and—the hardest thing of all—each other to get as many people off-planet as possible.
- “Five Recipes You Can’t Live Without” , Spirit’s Tincture, August 2016 – Told in the style of a series of cupcake recipes you probably shouldn’t try at home, this story was a runner up in Spirit’s Tincture’s inaugural issue flash fiction contest.
- “The Plumes of Enceladus”, Abyss & Apex, Q4 2016 (October 1st) – Andry lost her legs at a young age, but she isn’t going to let that keep her from her dream of space exploration. But she hadn’t counted on Frank—a hot-shot pilot who launches his own rival mission. Who will win the race to capture water from the Plumes of Enceladus?
- “Fallinghome: A Reevaluation”, Big Echo SF, Autumn 2016 (November 1st) – Told in the style of a narrative essay about system-famous 24th-century architect Akiko Cheung, this story looks at the cost of artistic success.
- “Proceedings from the First and Only Sixteenth Annual One-Woman Symposium on Time Manipulation”, Time Travel Tales, November 30th – Time manipulation can (will/might) have be(en) a delicate, difficult practice—even if you get the verbs figured out. Can Dr Mirai Keiko (iterations 1 through 16) master its arcane secrets? Or will she (have) regret(ted) that pre-symposium bottle of saké? Told in the style of conference proceedings.
So that’s all, folks! Again, feel free to reach out if you’d like a reading copy of any of these. And I hope you enjoy reading them as much as I enjoyed writing them, no matter who you are.