Three Shades of Happy

As you may have heard me squeak on Twitter, I recently sold another short story. This one will be appearing in an upcoming anthology, and I’ll share all the details on same as soon as I’m allowed. But the sale has been such a joy for me, for three reasons:

(1) The story in question is fun. I think it’s fun, and I hope you will, too. I had fun writing it, and people have told me it is fun to read, and I believe them. I’m fond of it. It may be the first story I’ve sold that made me think, “Gosh, I can’t wait for people to read this!” rather than, “Oh God, what if it’s secretly awful and they read it and they all know?” I’m pretty confident it’s not secretly awful. Which is a new and nice feeling.

(2) The story features recurring characters of mine, whom I hope you’ll see in other works in future, including my novel. The protagonist-narrator, Esmat Ahuja, is one of the novel’s POV characters; she also narrates the short story I’m currently polishing, and narrates or features in at least two other WIPs. Her brother Eli and his … unusual partner Sirin (aka Kin) are usually involved. I love these three and I want you to meet them.

(3) The story in question is the first work of fiction I completed since developing postpartum depression. In fact, my desire to write and submit it, and my success in following through on both, were two of the signs at the end of last year that the fog really was lifting. It is the first thing I have submitted anywhere and to anyone in three years. And I’m proud of it, and it sold. I can’t even describe what a glad and astonishing sunrise that is after three dark years. I am so very, very grateful to the editor who accepted it, and I’m so excited for you to read it.

Works in Progress

For the curious.

My story that ran in Beneath Ceaseless Skies, “The Red Cord,” is set in a place called the Marethi Ordinary. Or just the Ordinary, to its inhabitants. The Ordinary is also the setting for my novel-in-progress, whose working title has changed only approximately seventeen times in the last two years. Right now we’re calling it Ash. Or Malice. No, probably Ash. It doesn’t matter, it will be something else eventually. Mostly it’s The Goddamned Novel.

I’m also currently working on two short stories set in that same world, plus short stories about:

  • Malevolent angels
  • Monstrous mermaids
  • Carnivorous unicorns
  • Imaginary wolves

(Those are each the subject of a separate story. I have not figured out how to get all of those things into one story, though I bet it would be a hell of a story.)

I’ve also been working on a novel collaboration with Mishell Baker, called The Widow’s Wolf. We completed an alpha draft over the summer that comes in a little above 110,000 words. We began the process of beta revision and then tabled it for a research and rumination break.

And then I decided to try something completely new for NaNoWriMo this year and started writing a space horror thing that has turned into a space … I’m-not-quite-sure-anymore. A Space Oddity.

I am very, very bad at doing one thing at a time.