Hobkin squeaks, a good night’s sleep, and signs

Hobkin is a very silly animal. I went downstairs yesterday after working in the library all day to discuss and start dinner prep with fosteronfilm, then made to go back upstairs to lug down the interim desktop I was using while my laptop was in the shop. I wanted to hook it to our network and retrieve the files stranded on it, but the fuzzwit apparently thought I was going back up to work for another cluster of hours and was dismayed. The little guy started squeaking.

It’s the silliest sound I have ever heard an animal make–like a wheel in desperate need of oil on helium. Of course, I turned right around and went back to reassure and cuddle him (leaving fosteronfilm to retrieve and set up the computer). I can’t post the sound he made, but here’s a picture that illustrates how Hobkin is so not an animal of dignity and grace:


I wonder if this is the skunk equivalent of “Live long and prosper”?

   


Writing Stuff

It’s amazing what a good night’s sleep can do to quell a minor freakout. I’m feeling much better, totally over my quakes and anxiety.

When I woke up, my head was brimming with ideas for how to simplify the opening of my novel to make it more accessible to a younger audience, as well as thoughts on how to block out the chapters I’ve currently got into panels and picture pages. It seems like my sleeping self has made my decision for me. Barring some unforeseen weirdness, I’m going to go for the picture book effort. I was pretty much headed there, but it’s reassuring to know my unconscious is in sync with my conscious.

I find I’m rather looking forward to the challenge of preparing a picture book manuscript out of my novel. At least I won’t have to wring my brain coming up with new characters or settings or story lines. It doesn’t hurt that I am utterly enchanted by the idea of having my tale accompanied by lavish, beautiful illustrations.

The editor is sending me her notes and a few examples from her publishing house of what she has in mind to give me an idea of the length, complexity, and scope I should aim for. I’m going to wait to see these before I start (and before I give them my official “I’m game”), but in the interim, I’m re-reading my novel to once again familiarize myself with the voice and mood I used, as well as any details I may have forgotten since the last time I looked it over.

In the next couple days, I’m going to try to clear off as much Tangent and The Town Drunk work from my plate as I can, as well as try to check off all the outstanding stray issues hovering about my “things to do” list. I want to be able to approach this project with focused concentration at the start. So if folks need me for something and have been holding off on dropping me a line, better do so now while I’m in rapid-fire-just-do-it mode.

I’m very glad I finished the first draft of “Honor is a Game Mortals Play” so I’m not having to ping-pong back and forth between these two projects. Barring a deluge of critiques of the “this-totally-sucks you-call-yourself-a-writer? Hah!” variety coming back on it, I anticipate the rewrite will go smoothly. I typically find rewrites fairly easy on my writer muscles . . . I say as I gear up to embark upon the biggest “rewrite” I’ve ever contemplated. Erm.

Received:
The editor of Dragonfly Spirit sent me a sneak peek of the March cover. The artwork features my story, “Kaawwa, Naagan, and the Queen’s Diamond Necklace”! She also kindly gave me permission to display it:

Isn’t it gorgeous? And again, I’m reminded how much I love seeing beautiful artwork come about as a result of the words I scribble on the page. Were I one to believe in signs and portents delivered from the Great Beyond, I would see this as a really good one.

Agent news that makes me go “EEP!”

P-doc appointment successful, except I saw a P-nurse practitioner. But I’m actually happier at how it worked out. She refilled my prescription and then put me into a “med group” for future refills which is free, so I don’t have to fork out those doctor visit follow-up co-pays just to keep me in scripts. Nice.

   


Writing Stuff

Eep. Better make that EEP!! I just got an email from my agent with two bits of news:
1. An extremely glowing and encouraging rejection from Harcourt on my middle-grade novel which included such lines such as “I honestly couldn’t put it down,” “It brings to mind the classic Jonathan Livingston Seagull and The Education of Little Tree,” and “I’m certain that this story will make its mark somewhere.” All really, really nice to my battered writer’s ego, but still, a “no.” Moving on.
2. An email from another publishing house–a major one–asking me if I’d be willing to convert my middle-grade novel into a picture book for them to consider. Not one of those 10-page picture book dealies, but a “sophisticated picture book reader.”

On the one (big, hugely gigantic) hand, Woohoo! But on the other, it’s still not a sale by any stretch. And, erm, I’m very unfamiliar with picture book format and style–having written none of them. Although I did research and then block a couple of my folktales into picture books as an exercise, so I’m not totally loose and dangling.

Then there’s the stupid hand (yes, I know that gives me three–I can be a three-armed mutant if I want), that being that I really, really love my novel. I think it’s beautiful, something I’m extremely proud to have written, one of my best works to date. And I am fully aware how idiotic that complaint is. If I turn my novel into a picture book, it doesn’t take away from the original non-picture book, and I’m not one of those writers who beats their breast and wails about the “integrity of their art.” I’m unemployed and my health insurance is running out. I need to sell that manuscript.

Still, there is freaking out happening–both the ecstatic and the quietly imploding variety.

Obviously, I’m going to do the intelligent thing, research the format of “sophisticated picture book readers” and see what picture books these folks have published in the past, and email back my agent to see if I can’t get some guidelines. Then, after I finish my quiet little freak out, I’m going to get to work. ‘Sides, they might decide “that girl can write, but she sure as heck can’t write picture books” and I’ll be back to where I am now.

And, there’s always still a chance another publisher will snap it up. But being a realistic sort, I won’t be holding my breath for that to happen.

Editing/New Words:
1300-words on a novel I put down end of last year. Made excellent progress with ideas galore, but it looks like I’m going to put it down again.

Club 100 For Writers
      6

500/day
      8

Watched Inosensu: Kôkaku kidôtai (Ghost in the Shell 2: Innocence) last night, courtesy Netflix. Actually, it’s probably more accurate to say that fosteronfilm watched it, while I glanced up periodically to appreciate the shiny, cyberpunk pictures and skim the subtitles while I huddled over my laptop, writing. I’m not actually sure of the details of the plot, something to do with the examination of the nature of souls, but it was pretty.

Sometime in the future, I think I’d like to sit down and watch it properly. It seems I don’t multitask writing and subtitles well. But I was on a roll, writing-wise. Didn’t go to (that is, stagger to and flop into) bed until 6AM.

   


Writing Stuff

Received:
Payment from Here & Now for “My Friend is a Lesbian Zombie.” Huzzah! Contrib. copy on the way. Although I do have a slightly reamed–”slightly reamed,” is that an oxymoron?–feeling from the PayPal fees and their conversion rate between pounds sterling and U.S. dollars. Oh well. It’s money.

Not Received:
Hmm, I still haven’t gotten paid for “Li T’ien and the Demon Nian.” I wonder if the Cricket Magazine Chicago move knocked my check into a crack somewhere . . . Query time?

New Words:
800 on “Honor is a Game Mortals Play.” I’m at zero draft. Woo! “The End” – two of the most satisfying words a writer can type.

The epilogue turned into a whole ‘nuther scene and became the denouement. Um, oops. But it’s done. Done done done! Considering that I finished it at 6AM this morning–the staying up all night 6AM, not the waking up at dawn 6AM–I suspect that a great deal of ruthless editing is in order. At least I hope so. I’d like to cull at least a couple hundred words. dsnight assured me there was wiggle room, but that’s no excuse for sloppy writing. The plan is to do a few editing passes, foist it upon fosteronfilm to first reader, and then load it up to Critters to go up next week.

Zokutou word meterZokutou word meter
6,877 / 6,000
(114.6%)

Club 100 For Writers
      3

500/day
      7

Roaches and truffles

Life is like a box of choklits . . .

AM confection: coconut crusted cricket crunch–or possibly a roach that crawled into the box.

In the shower my brain bubbled over with ideas for the WiP. So distracted was I that I couldn’t remember whether I’d brushed my teeth or not. Just-in-case brushing commenced. Dry and dressed (with minty-fresh teeth), I ran to my laptop . . . only to find that my inspiration seemed to have followed the toothpaste suds down the drain.

I tapped out a few halfhearted lines, and pondered how to waterproof my laptop.

Suddenly, my Outlook calender chimed, informing me that I had a follow-up appointment with my Pdoc . . . that I’m late for. Leaped into the car, sped down 400 and 285, sprint panting to the reception desk . . . and discover that my appointment was canceled. In January. Seems my Pdoc no longer has office hours on Wednesdays. However, my HMO had not deemed it necessary to alert me of that fact.

Now I ask you, does it seem clever to aggravate someone whom you know requires the services of a psychiatrist? Luckily for them, I restrained my urge to enter the ranks of psycho-killer and thereby earn the moniker “The Sporker.”

Drove back home, sat down to write, and realized I couldn’t remember if I took my Imuran. Unlike with dental hygiene, possible duplication is a Bad Thing. At which point, I was sorely tempted to crawl back into bed and call the day a complete loss.

PM sweet: Raspberry filled chocolate truffle, hand-dipped in heavy cream ganache

Fortunately, things Got Better.

The doorbell rang announcing a package. It’s surprise prezzies from britzkrieg! Amazon.com wishlist goodies: Ancient Egyptian Magic–an Egyptian sourcebook, at last!–and The Gathering of Spirits, by Carrie Newcomer–excellent music for the writing of folktales.

Thanks, Brit! You’re the absolute bestest!

   


Writing Stuff:
French chocolate lace, English toffee, vanilla caramel, and a gumball

Next up, I got word that Ellen Datlow is giving “The Bunny of Vengeance and the Bear of Death” an Honorable Mention in next year’s Best Fantasy and Horror. Squee! That’s one step closer to actually having a story there.

And also, it seems (via jaylake and nihilistic_kid) that the cat is now bagfree. *insert fanfare and trumpets* Herein the Best New Fantasy: 2005 Table of Contents:

1 “My Father’s Mask,” Joe Hill (20th Century Ghosts),
2 “Pip and the Fairies,” Theodora Goss (Strange Horizons),
3 “The Language of Moths,” Christopher Barzak (Realms of Fantasy),
4 “At the End of the Hall,” Nick Mamatas (Fantasy Magazine),
5 “Heads Down, Thumbs Up,” Gavin Grant (scifiction),
6 “Monster,” Kelly Link (Noisy Outlaws),
7 “The Dybbuk in Love,” Sonya Taaffe (The Dybbuk in Love),
8 “Gulls,” Tim Pratt, (Polyphony 5),
9 “Summer Ice,” Holly Phillips (In the Palace of Repose),
10 “The Maiden Tree,” Catherynne M. Valente (Cabinet des Fees),
11 “The Farmer’s Cat,” Jeff VanderMeer (Polyphony 5)
12 “A Little Madness Goes a Long Way,” M. Rickert (F&SF),
13 “Proboscis,” Laird Barron (F&SF),
14 “Dancing in the Light of Giants,” Jay Lake (Realms of Fantasy),
15 “Eating Hearts,” Yoon Ha Lee, (The Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction),
16 “Returning My Sister’s Face,” Eugie Foster (Realms of Fantasy).

Is that a luscious line-up or what (if I do say so myself)?

Received:
Contract from Oceans of the Mind for “The Few, the Proud, the Leech Corps.”

New Words: 500 on “Honor is a Game Mortals Play.” And it ought to be done. But it’s not. It needs an epilogue. Urg. I hope that 6K maximum has some wiggle room.

Zokutou word meter
6,067 / 6,000
(101.1%)

Club 100 For Writers
      2

500/day
      6

Pink Panther and Hobkin’s better

fosteronfilm went to see an advance screening of the new Pink Panther movie last night. I was planning on seeing it with him, but Hobkin sicked up his lunch yesterday, which made three meals in a row that he hadn’t held down, so I decided to stay home and see how he did with dinner.

Matthew gave the movie two reels in his Fosteronfilm review so I’m not all that disappointed to have missed it. (PSA/plug: fosteronfilm has begun doing giveaways of our spare advance screening tickets from his fosteronfilm.com site. Obviously, this is only of interest to locals, but if you’re in the Atlanta area, there are freebies to be had.)

Hobkin’s dinner went over (and stayed down) well. After a bit of minor post-meal chaos–mostly miscellaneous stomping and sporadic digging–Hobkin settled in my lap, fell asleep, and pinned me in my chair all night. I think he’s feeling better.

The prognosis on my back is less positive. My spine feels like one fused plank. Ow.

   


Writing Stuff

I did indeed sit on my muse (probably not what the doctor recommends for an unhappy back). Alas, the only thing I got out of her was a muffled “more weight.”

Just what I need, a cheeky muse.

Hence, I embarked upon much joyous cat-waxing. I went through my list of recently published works and picked a couple to send out to foreign markets for reprint consideration. I especially like submitting reprints this way ’cause I can sim sub like crazy as there’re no rights conflicts to fret about. Foreign markets buy their translation in their language, easy-schmeasy. It feels like such a luxury compared to the strict one-market-exclusive-consideration-no-matter-how-long-their-RL-is standard for first publication consideration. Sure, there are markets that will consider sim subs, but they’re few and far between, and it doesn’t do a sneeze worth of good if one market will look at sim subs but the other one you want to send it to won’t. It’s so not a writers’ market out there.

Received:
- Contract from Galaktika for the Hungarian reprint of “All in My Mind.”
- 2-day “very well written, but isn’t really a Baen’s Universe story” personal rejection from Baen’s Universe with lots of encouragement, an invite to submit again, and a better idea of what they’re looking for (more action).
- 30-day (!) rejection from GVG (!) of F&SF. Wowza. This is, by far, the longest response time I’ve ever had from F&SF. I thought for sure the ms had been eaten by the USPS. My perception of the world-as-I-know-it has been rocked.

New Words: 100 on “Honor is a Game Mortals Play.”
The end was so clear to me last week, so close I could almost taste it. But now I’m spinning my wheels. Wah!

Zokutou word meterZokutou word meter
5,240 / 6,000
(87.3%)

Club 100 For Writers
      2

Pausing for a quick update

dude_the flew back to Illinois yesterday. fosteronfilm and I are settling back into our normal, daily routines. Actually, “routine” for me is more like frantically trying to catch up on all the things that piled up between Utah and the Superbowl. *gurgle*

I also managed to wrench my back. Probably “wrench” is the wrong word. It’s more like I put too much strain on it over a prolonged period of time and now it refuses to bend without sending jagged pain through me. I need a new human suit; this one doesn’t work right anymore.

   


Writing Stuff

Emailed a query to Here & Now since I still haven’t received either my contrib. copies of issue 7 or payment.

Spent most of the morning doing Tangent work, publishing reviews and answering correspondences. I think I’m mostly caught up on that front now. Although there’s still the strange email submission I received that appears to be (and I’m being charitable here) some sort of disjointed, narrative-free flash fiction or perhaps a rambling stream-of-consciousness note from someone suffering from dementia. Huh. Informing someone with an obviously poorly considered marketing strategy that Tangent is not a fiction publication is rather low on the list of items that need my attention.

Next up, The Town Drunk work. Once more into the breach! *limp*

Received:
- 1-day “exceptionally well written story that, unfortunately, is not for us” from Baen’s Universe with a “We definitely would like to hear from you again.” You betcha they’re going to be hearing from me again!
- 56-day SALE of “Fade to Black” to Greek-language ‘zine Ennea. Amusingly, this story hasn’t been published in English yet, so its first publication will be in a language I can’t read.

Superbowl XL, Veronica Mars, Story Sale to Oceans of the Mind

Was that not a fantastic Superbowl game?? Granted, we were rooting for the Steelers–an arbitrary decision mostly based upon uniform colors (although I believe dude_the is a fan). There were two memorable plays–the 75 yard run to touchdown, and the fallback pass touchdown (that’s probably not what it’s called)–which had me jumping up and down and cheering, a 200% increase in memorable plays than in previous years. The bottle of Mike’s Hard Lime I had may or may have assisted on the jumping/cheering front.

dude_the introduced (and addicted) us to Veronica Mars. He brought the season 1 DVD boxed set with him, and we spent most of Thursday and Friday, and several chunks of Saturday, watching them all. It’s an excellent mystery series, with Buffy-esque writing (and even a few cameo appearances by Alyson Hannigan). Word on the street is that Joss Whedon is a fan of the show, and I can definitely see why. Although I think the DVD set is the way to go. The story arc is pronounced and I probably would have gotten annoyed if I’d had to see it unravel on a one episode per week time frame. Ergo, fosteronfilm and I aren’t going to start watching season 2, which is currently airing. I don’t want to jump into the season 2 story mid-season and I’d much rather wait for it to come out in a boxed DVD set and see it in another Veronica Mars viewing marathon.

   


Writing Stuff

Received:
- 31-day sale of “The Few, the Proud, the Leech Corps” to Oceans of the Mind for their “Tribute to the Pulps” Spring 2006 issue. This is the story that I’ve let languish with Dreams of Decadence for four years. Long story short: subbed it Jan 2002–>five months later, queries result in note from editor saying she was “quite likely to buy it”–>unanswered queries over the next 1.5 years meet silence–>a desperate post on the SFF.net DNA newsgroup Jan. 2004 results in a reply from Warren Lapine saying that the D of D editor had my tale in her “buy” pile–>two more years pass w/no formal acceptance letter, contract, or other communication despite several queries–>Jan ’06, Eugie gives up and starts sending it out again.

Obviously, I should have gotten it recirculating sooner since it sold very quickly. As obviously, Dreams of Decadence is no longer a viable market anymore and hasn’t been for at least four years.

- Edits of “Souls of Living Wood” from Fantasist Enterprises to okay for their Modern Magic anthology. The changes were tiny and cosmetic. I approved them and got a note back from the editor that my check is in process now. Coolness.

Laptop status, Lesbian Zombie, shameless pimpage

Sent my poor, malfunctioning laptop back to HP yesterday. At least they realized when we called their customer service number that they needed to immediately send us up the line rather than trying to get us to jump through their futile checklist hoops again. We talked to a case manager–someone in the states and not India–who seemed to understand that the problem wasn’t a question of swapping out parts, a la the battery or fan, but rather something that needed in-depth diagnosis and testing. Well, duh. They would’ve known that already if they’d listened to me the first time, but it’s a start.

Right now, I really wish they’d just replace the stupid thing and have done with it, but apparently we’re not at that stage yet. Third time’s a charm? *snort*

Fortunately, we’ve now got WiFi connectivity on our old Vaio desktop, thanks to dean13. We lugged the tower, monitor, and peripherals upstairs, and I am once again holed up in the library, flogging ye olde writing muse. Giddyap!

   


Writing Stuff

Shameless plug time!

My signing with Aberrant Dreams is in two days!
Date: Saturday, February 4th, 2006
Time: 4:00 PM to 7:30 PM
Place: Oxford Comics & Games; 2855 Piedmont Rd NE; Atlanta, GA 30305-2767; (404) 233-8682

If you’re in the area, I’d love for you to come out and say “hi”!

Published:
- The podcast of “My Friend is a Lesbian Zombie” read by Word Whore (of Air Out My Shorts) is now up at Escape Pod! Stephen did an absolutely fabulous job with it. Download. Listen. Giggle. Warning: There’s both naughty language and lesbian zombies in it.
- Also, the Sci Phi Show podcast on “The Problem of Evil” (examining the philosophical issue via the Escape Pod podcast of my story, “The Life and Times of Penguin”) went up while I was in Utah. I’m tickled to have the issue examined via Penguin and Ducky’s viewpoints. A very nice introduction to the basic arguments of the classic debate (although I don’t agree with Jason Rennie’s final conclusion–but don’t ask me to engage in relevant back-and-forth online; my experience with Internet debates typically makes me want to act out with random acts of sporking). And check out the lively discussion that stemmed from the podcast! There’s actually thoughtful discourse happening around something I wrote. I think I died and went to writer heaven (yes, that’s a spine-tingling irony, considering the subject matter at hand).

New Words: 1K on the Japanese Demon Hunter story. Making good progress, although I’m having trouble coming up with a proper title. Eh, one will come to me in good time. I hope.

Zokutou word meterZokutou word meter
3,911 / 6,000
(65.2%)

Club 100 For Writers
      3

500/day
      2

Home again, home again . . .

Full Sundance write-up tomorrow. Mundane catch-up herein:

Back from Utah. Retrieved skunk from godmother. The lil guy was pretty ecstatic to be home, and so am I. All is well, but I’m exhausted. I was napping with Hobkin–crashing really–until he got it into his wee head to run amok and wake me up. Now he’s done being amok and napping under his hutch, and I’m bleary-eyed and insomniac.

Hobkin somehow knew when we were coming to pick him up. He was busily digging at the door when we rolled into her driveway–a behavior she informed us he hadn’t engaged in at all before, and which he’d begun about two minutes prior to our arrival. There’s a lot of sense and intuition going on in that small, fuzzy head. Hobkin gave me many nose-sniff kisses as soon as I picked him up, and snuggled me all the way home. ‘Course then he went amok at 5AM . . .

My laptop powered itself down several times while we were in Utah, the same malfunction as before. Not surprised in the least. Going to have to call HP and see about sending it back again. Bastards.

   


Writing Stuff

Got an email from the Aberrant Dreams folks inviting me to dinner after the signing on Saturday. Haven’t replied yet ’cause dude_the is coming down this weekend for Superbowl Sunday, and I don’t know what our plans are. Delighted by the invite regardless. I love it when editors offer to feed me.

I have much, much Tangent work to catch up on. And I have about two dozen stories that I want to read, as well as a slew of ones I’ve already read from last year, that I need to pare down to the five best to nominate for the Sturgeon Award before the 24th of February. Urk.

Received:
Squee:
- 217-day sale of a French reprint of “Returning My Sister’s Face” to Faeries.
- Check from Ennea for the Greek reprint of “When the Lights Go Out.” And it’s in U.S. dollars and not euros, hurray!
- A status update from mroctober on a YA anthology he’s trying to sell to Mirrorstone that I wrote a story for. The Mirrorstone editor made lots of promising-sounding words, “very interested” being the main ones, but it’s still in the “maybe” category. A very positive maybe, though. Got my fingers and toes crossed. I’d love to be published by Mirrorstone.
- 24-day email from Doug Cohen, slush editor of Realms of Fantasy, informing me that he’d received my latest submission and that he’ll pass it along to Shawna in February.

Sigh:
- 106-day personal nope from Chris East of Futurismic after holding onto this story for extended consideration. Bummer. But he did invite me to try again.
- 54-day “no thanks” with invite to submit again from Lorraine and James. Eh, it was a long shot.

Rolling my eyes:
- 547-day “Despite your publication credits, we feel you need some help getting your prose skills up to a truly professional level. You may want to consider attending a Borderlands Press Writer’s Boot Camp” rejection from Borderlands 6 on a story I’d already withdrawn and sold elsewhere.

I am terribly tempted to respond with: “Despite your pay rate, I feel you need some help getting your publishing house up to a truly professional level. You may want to consider improving your response times and organization skills, as well as not including a self-serving plug in your rejections.” But I won’t. After all, two unprofessionals does not equal a professional.

New Words: 3K on a Japanese Demon Hunter short written during some down time in the condo at Utah. This one I’m intending for dsnight‘s Heroes in Training anthology.

Club 100 For Writers
      1
*sigh*

500/day
      1
It’s a new year, and the first time I’ve managed to hit 500. At least it’s not February yet.

Oh Where, Oh Where, Has My Laptop Gone?

I checked the HP website and the status of my laptop is listed as: “Hewlett-Packard is currently repairing or replacing your product. . . . not yet shipped.”

They were supposed to ship my laptop back yesterday. And I even bought the stupid extended care package that promises expedited priority service! Struggling not to work myself into a foaming frenzy of go-medieval-on-their-asses-argh, but what little forbearance I had left is strained to the big kablooey point. If anyone sees a small mushroom cloud Atlanta-ward, that’s probably me losing it.

Calmblueocean. *twitch*

The thing is, I’d calculated on taking my laptop with me to Utah next week.* More than calculated, counted on. The condo we’re staying at won’t have WiFi, unless things have changed since last year, but there are Internet cafes aplenty in Park City, and I’d assumed I’d be able to at least maintain perfunctory email contact, not to mention not fall too behind on my various editorial duties. Most importantly, I’d counted on having it so I could type up any observation and inspiration notes for future stories.

While it is still possible that my laptop will get to me in time–like if they shipped it today–it’s cutting it very close.

@!&*$#! Calmblueocean.


*fosteronfilm is reprising his Sundance/SlamDance/Troma Dance film festival working holiday again this year, and I decided to go with him this time. Traveling is the best muse food for me, and I figure there’s going to be a lot of inspiration and creative energies crashing about at Sundance et al. So while I doubt I can deduct the cost as a working expense (although fosteronfilm might be able to), I think it’ll be worth doing.

   


Writing Stuff

I think the only reason I haven’t detonated into a big wrathful smear of exploded-Eugie is that I’ve received so much excellent writing news.

Augie Wiedemann, the artist who illustrated “Oranges, Lemons, and Thou Beside Me” for Apex, sent me a print of the extra illustration he did because he liked the story so much. I’m bowled over and touched by both the gift and the compliment. I shall need to find a frame for it and then I’m going to hang it in the library.

Received:
- 41-day sale of “A Patch of Jewels in the Sky” to Dragonfly Spirit, slated for publication in their June issue.
- 20-day rejection from Fantasy Magazine offset by a reprint sale of “Returning My Sister’s Face” to Sean Wallace’s Best New Fantasy anthology. Huzzah! I’m going to be in an anthology with the word “Best” in the title!

And check out the gorgeous cover art by Eikasia: