I surely wasn’t expecting to be writing this, but the news is, my short story “Monstrance of Sky” is online now at Escape Pod. So it is, at least technically, eligible for awards for the year 2016.
This is my first fiction sale, and a pro sale at that. I am as thrilled as if you’d thrown me from an airplane. I’ve joined Codex, and I’ll be sending an application to SFWA some day soon.
More importantly, please go over to Escape Pod and give it a read, or better yet, a listen. The reader for this story, Alethea Kontis, just crushes me, her reading is dead-on, it grapples with all the nuance and competing emotions, I couldn’t have asked for a better reader. I’m very fortunate.
I was trying to sum it up, blurb it, encompass it somehow, but I felt like anything I came up with was selling it short. But the tags Escape Pod applied to it are terser and more immediate — I think that, cut free of surrounding context, they give a better sense of the themes and the emotional desperation Evelyn, the point-of-view character, is falling through: “aliens, clones, God, love, ocean, post-apocalyptic, religion, science, sex, war, women.” And pie, I should add. Please go read it, I’m very proud of it.
Thanks to Divya Srinivasan Breed, at Escape Pod, who edited and championed my story. Thanks also to Benjamin C. Kinney, the reader at Escape Pod who (bravely) first pulled this story from the slush. Thanks surely to Alethea Kontis who gave what will undoubtedly become the definitive reading of this work.
Extra thanks to all the first readers and critiquers who slogged through various unpolished versions of this work, and all contributed thoughtful suggestions and comments. Jeremy, Karlo, Sherry, Doug, Becky, Kat, Dave, Gail, Neal, Mike, Meg, Sarah, Terry, Eric, and my wife Olga. You know who you are. Forgive me if I’ve forgotten anyone.
Finally, thanks to the Baltimore Science Fiction Society, and especially the BSFS Writers Circle. Without them, I would have had no inspiration, no place to read my work, and surely not had such fine people to share it with.