Here’s the cover for Equus, edited by Rhonda Parrish and featuring a Thunder Road story by yours truly!
I’m stoked to be sharing this anthology with some excellent writers, and some writers I’ve yet to discover.
There’s always something magical about horses, isn’t there? Whether winged or at home in the water, mechanical or mythological, the equines that gallop through these pages span the fantasy spectrum. In one story a woman knits her way up to the stars and in another Loki’s descendant grapples with bizarre transformations while fighting for their life. A woman races on a unique horse to save herself from servitude, while a man rides a chariot through the stars to reclaim his self-worth. From steampunk-inspired stories and tales that brush up against horror to straight-up fantasy, one theme connects them all: freedom.
Featuring nineteen fantastic stories of equines both real and imagined by J.G. Formato, Diana Hurlburt, Tamsin Showbrook, M.L.D Curelas, Laura VanArendonk Baugh, VF LeSann, Dan Koboldt, J.J. Roth, Susan MacGregor, Pat Flewwelling, Angela Rega, Michael Leonberger, Sandra Wickham, Stephanie A. Cain, Cat McDonald, Andrew Bourelle, Chadwick Ginther, K.T. Ivanrest, and Jane Yolen.
My story made the back cover copy! You’ll never guess which one is mine.
Edmonton writer S.G. Wong was in town for a reading and workshop with ChiSeries and I had a blast taking her on a haunted tour of Winnipeg’s downtown. She knows I’m not just making up Winnipeg’s haunted nature either, because a street person came up to us before I started my spiel about the old Masonic Temple and spontaneously declared, “That place is haunted.”
Hopefully none of those spectres follow you home.
The throat is deep and the mouth is wide
Saw some things on the other side
Made me promise to never tell
But you know me, I can’t help myself
How’d I do in March?
Finish outlining my next novel and start writing it maybe?
- Now that I’ve changed my Thunder Road Facebook page to a more general author page,
I want to start developing a social media calendar. It won’t likely involve autoposts, I hate those, but I do need some sort of plan.
Finish a new chapter for An Excuse for Whiskey
- Get a new short story to my writing group for critique
I finally locked down (more or less) my outline for my next book. I’m not an outliner by nature, so this is a huge leap forward for me, process-wise. (A huger leap forward would be to have more actual writing done.) My initial outline drafts had way too much going on for the length I’m hoping to hit. I want this novel to come in at 60-65K–70K tops–which means if I succeed it will be my shortest novel. There were a couple subplots that I liked that had to be cut, because I knew they’d end up pushing the book to 90K, and better to just not write them than cut them later if I want to finish this book this year. I did start the book too, I have my first chapter roughly in shape, still not sure of the narrator’s voice, but it’s getting there. I’ve got about 5K in total, scattered across various scenes throughout the book that came to me as I outlined. So I guess I’m almost 10% done!
The social media calendar isn’t ready to roll, but I have a few new ideas for recurring posts, and I think I know the shape I want this strategy to take, so hopefully I’ll be ready to go in the summer.
Sent my chapter off to Sandra for An Excuse for Whiskey, left her with a big cliffhanger to figure out. We’re really getting in spitting distance of the end of this draft. Then the real work begins. We figured out how to write together, soon we’ll have to figure out how to edit together.
My writing group didn’t end up meeting in March, but I kept plugging away at the story anyway. I finished another draft of the story I’d wanted to submit, but it’s starting to head into novella territory, which I’m excited about, but also means it’ll take a bit longer to edit. Gonna rethink what I want that one to be. If I finish it, it’ll be the first Thunder Road story that takes place chronologically post-Too Far Gone. We’ll see.
What’s up for April?
- Send in pitches for two short stories, write at least one of them if accepted
- Keep working on my next novel
Had a great but full weekend. Between chatting with writing friends I’ve made across the country online, I played Dungeons & Dragons with my old high school gaming group (we’re still friends, going on thirty years now), and then had some drinks at a whiskey lounge with folks from my university days (still friends going on twenty-five). Three very distinct eras in my life all converging over three days, and all the while getting to share that time with my love.
Regardless of minor setbacks and frustrations, it’s times like this that remind me I’m a lucky dude.
I see my red head, messed bed, tear shed, queen bee
The stage it smells, tells, hell’s bells, miss-spells
Knocks me on my knees
It didn’t hurt, flirt, blood squirt, stuffed shirt
Hang me on a tree
After I count down, three rounds, in hell I’ll be in good company
The table of contents for Equus is finally live and it’s great to see everyone’s names. I’d sussed out a few other authors because I have a few friends on the list but it’s nice to see everyone all lined up. I’m very curious to read everyone else’s stories (and holy shit, I’m in a book with Jane Yolen)!
Stars, Wings, and Knitting Things by J.G. Formato
Eel and Bloom by Diana Hurlburt
A Complete Mare by Tamsin Showbrook
Neither Snow, nor Rain, nor Heat-Ray by M.L.D Curelas
Rue the Day by Laura VanArendonk Baugh
Riders in the Sky by VF LeSann
Above the Silver Sky by Daniel Koboldt
A Mother Unicorn’s Advice to Her Daughter by J.J. Roth
Ladies Day by Susan MacGregor
The Boys from Witless Bay by Pat Flewwelling
The Horse Witch by Angela Rega
Eli the Hideous Horse Boy by Michael Leonberger
Different by Sandra Wickham
To Ride a Steel Horse by Stephanie Cain
The Last Ride of Hettie Richter by Cat McDonald
We Us You by Andrew Bourelle
Scatter the Foals to the Wind by Chadwick Ginther
Lightless by K.T. Ivanrest
A Glory of Unicorns by Jane Yolen
Of course, I’m over the moon to be sharing a ToC with my good pal, and writing partner, Sandra Wickham; a first for us. Another first: sharing a ToC with my self-declared nemesis, Cat McDonald. Cat’s wanted to have a readoff to determine which of us will rule the universe for years now, so it looks like she might be getting her wish when Equus launches in July.
Get your Goodreads shelves ready!
Sleep has definitely been eluding me in the last week, and even when it seems like I’ve managed to sneak in a good night’s worth I’m so tired when I sit down in the morning to write.
So I’ve definitely fallen a bit behind on my work in this week after Daylight Saving Time.
I feel tired, you six-fingered bastard. I feel tired.
Ah well. I’ll get that hour back eventually, and given my forecast for October, I’ll need it. In the meantime, I’ll keep drinking tea by the truckload, and scratching out what words I can.
Forget the glamour and
Mumble a jackhammer
– – – under your breath – – –
What the hell happened to February?
I had my head down for so much of the month that I didn’t get around to posting my goals, but I was still working away at them.
Finish and submit my 2016 book, which came close, but was not quite ready to submit.
Keep my short fiction on submission.
Finish revisions on one new story and submit it.
Okay, it took me two months to finish that first goal, but it’s done, submitted, and awaiting feedback from my editor. The novel in question was not only my shortest to date (84K; for comparision, Thunder Road was around 95K when I submitted it, Tombstone Blues 105K, and Too Far Gone was 135K. All of those lengths changed a bit–Too Far Gone the most drastically, with a pub length of 115K) it was also the fastest I’ve ever gotten a novel into submission shape. While I didn’t hit my goal of submitting the novel in the calendar year of 2016, it took me just under 11 months to actually write and revise the book once I got down to the writing. And considering I took a few months off in the summer to finish revising Graveyard Mind, I feel better about my chances of finishing the book I start this year within the bounds of 2017.
The short story I finished revising and then submitted, sold to an anthology. I’ll talk more about it when the contract is signed, and the editors announce more details. I will say it’s another Thunder Road ‘verse story. Pretty excited to see my second sale of 2017 so early in the year.
And for March:
- Finish outlining my next novel and start writing it maybe?
- Now that I’ve changed my Thunder Road Facebook page to a more general author page, I want to start developing a social media calendar. It won’t likely involve autoposts, I hate those, but I do need some sort of plan.
- Finish a new chapter for An Excuse for Whiskey
- Get a new short story to my writing group for critique