So Far The Distance

We used to believe that the stars were so bright and far away that they must be gods. Later, we thought that the sky itself might be a great cloth slowly being eaten by moths and the stars were mer…

Source: So Far The Distance

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Some new writings

Dearest Reader,

 

I realized I’ve been not posting lately. Let’s blame the pile of grading that threatened to literally bury me (it was several hundred pages of papers).

So a quick update on some published things!

Poems

A piece of my Missing Girl cycle was published up at Abyss & Apex.

Two poems were at Birds Piled Loosely. One is from my apocalyptic scenarios series.

Two poems were in the gorgeous print issue of Banshee!

One poem in Recompose. It’s about space!

 

Fiction

A story from my sci-fi novel in stories appeared in Drunken Boat.

 

Non-Fiction

I wrote about Ray Bradbury at Ploughshares

I wrote about Alien at Nerds of a Feather

 

Now I shall return from where I came (ie: writing, writing all the things)

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Story Notes #2

I’m in the midst of grading and need to refocus for a second (to re-energize my grading battery), so I thought I’d do another series of story notes (the first time was so fun!).

 

Five Fairy Tales about the End of the World was published at the lovely Gingerbread House Literary. This was part of my undergrad thesis and again connects to the concept of how violence can change a landscape and a place’s sense of history (something I’m particularly interested in regards to folklore). This contains one of my countless reworkings of my favorite folkloric trope (Death and the Doctor/Blessed Child). It also contains the details of the actual thesis I considered working on if I had gone on for a Master’s in Folklore Studies.

 

Gyromancy, published at Bookanista, was another section of my undergrad thesis. This is a story I feel particularly protective of.  I think a lot of what I was trying doesn’t work quite as well as it should, but this is one of the pieces I wrote where I most wanted to crawl into the story and stop what was happening—a feeling I now connect with meaning that I might be writing the characters right. One of the dreams in this story is one of my own.

 

Sometimes the Scenery is Beautiful, published at Fiction Vortex, went through a lot of revisions before I was published. The key to finally figuring out how to revise this one was when I figured out the device I needed to tell it (it was originally first person just from the perspective of Lucy, and then third person close, and then first mixed with third person “memory” sections, and a few other variations on those). This is another reworking of the Death and the Doctor/ Blessed Child motif). This story was originally titled “Place Nothing on Ground,” after a sign I saw at a recycling plant, and which I think might be a good life philosophy.

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Story Notes #1

So I love story notes when authors give them. I’m the type of person that reads introductions, footnotes, and acknowledgments pages. Thus, for fun (basically my work break today), I’d give some context to some of my stories and poems.

 

Telling Ghost Stories, published by Nonbinary Review, was written as an ode to one of my favorite types of ghost/fairy stories. It includes one of my favorite jokes I’ve ever made. It also includes weird reinterpretations of three stories I also wrote (A Room for Lost Things—published at Diabolical Plots, Seven Years of Crashing Waves—published at Cartagena, and one that has not yet found its home). Before this came together, though, the images first came to me while walking around UW-Madison’s campus, at night, after a concert with a friend. The place that directly inspired the story no longer exists, which is a kind of ghost story in itself.

 

Lover, I’ll be Waiting, published by Wyvern Lit, was written as a creative response in one of my favorite classes I’ve taken (the amazing Charo D’Etcheverry’s course on Japanese ghost stories). Each of the retold tales within this piece started with a real tale-type. I think there are something like 30 references in this story. This was the first story I ever read aloud at my MFA program.
The First to Cross the Bridge, published by The Stoneslide Corrective, was the first story I ever wrote in college. The original draft is only 4 pages. It went through something like 12 and a half revisions before being picked up (and at such a wonderful place!).  Every one of the italicized sections connects back to another story I wrote. My thesis during undergrad was a collection of interlinked stories about the way that violence changes the way we both consume and tell stories. This was one of what I considered the “holding” stories that linked and looped into the other stories without making direct connections with the main act of the novel. This story also plays on one of my favorite folkloric tale-types. This story is one that means so much to me, for so many different reasons. It also has my first ever textual shoutout to my beloved Pistons. So there’s that, too.

 

I don’t know if I’ll do these notes again. But it was fun. So maybe?

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Essential SFF

Today at Nerds of a Feather, I discussed my list of 24 essential SFF books. You can read the list here!

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A New Review and a New Essay

Dear Reader,

If you’ve been reading this blog for more than a week, than you might well know my love for Colson Whitehead and Nathan Englander.

So this is a double-header of favorites. At Nerds of a Feather, I reviewed Whitehead’s new novel (read it here) and at Ploughshares I discussed my favorite Englander story (read it here).

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Some things

Dearest Reader,

I took some time away from the interwebs for summer. Here, though, are some links to things I had published over that time!

Poetry

Hobart, 4 poems: “Ball Don’t Lie” “Kitchen Piece” “Tricks to Keep Away the Dark” “Kitchen Piece”

Liminality, 1 poem: “Exposing Tricks”

Vending Machine, 2 poems: “All the Tea My Creepy Heart Desires” and “The Other Side of This is Still Here”

Noble/Gas Quarterly, 1 poem: “Aura Symptom”

 

Fiction

Flash Fiction Online: “So This”

Halo: “4 Minutes and 13 Seconds”

Columns–Ploughshares

Planetary Poetry

Lost Hearts and Sleepless Nights

Objects in Mirror

Reviews, Nerds of a Feather

The View from the Cheap Seats

The Regional Office is Under Attack!

The Quality of Silence

The People in the Castle

Singing with All My Skin and Bone

Rise

 

And an essay I wrote for James Everington’s blog!

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