Zombies, Posthumans, and Little Dead Girls

It’s been a busy couple of months.

Followers will recall that I’ve been diligently plugging away at the first draft of my new novel, “The Skylords of Agathon,” for the past year. At about 70,000 words, I’ve put it on pause for a little while to work on some short stories. The short story is really such a great form for practicing and learning writing techniques. Certainly, writing and rewriting a novel comes with its own lessons that cannot be learned any other way, but for honing your prose, storytelling mechanics, and finding your voice, short stories cannot be beat.

After getting a very thoughtful personalized rejection from the editor of Beneath Ceaseless Skies for my story Reignition, I went back to the manuscript with a hacksaw. With some thoughtful guidance from my friend Hannah Durocher, I cut about 5,000 words (reducing it from 14,000 to 9,000 words overall). I’m very pleased with the outcome. It’s now submitted to the quarterly Writers of the Future contest. Wish me luck!

For the better part of a year now, I’ve been a part of a DC-based writer’s group called The Speculative Wordsmiths. It’s been a great group with a diverse group of voices. Several months ago, I teamed up with another member of the group, Carl Duzett, to co-author a story based on an original idea of Carl’s. The story is called “Six Degrees of Zombie Kevin Bacon.” It makes me grin every time I tell someone the title!

Zombie Kevin Bacon is now complete and I hope to find a home for it soon. (If you’re an editor and you’re interested, let me know!) It’s a story about swindlers, celebrity zombies, post-apocalyptic mob bosses, guilt, and revenge. It’s a ton of fun.

I also recently finished an early draft of a new story, tentatively titled “On a Lunar Plateau.” It’s a story about a future world dominated by posthumans where ordinary mortals live on reservations and the “posts” entertain themselves with safaris. It’s a story that asks if love can exist in a world with immortality.

It’s in an early draft, but I’m hoping to submit it as part of an application to a workshop this fall. More to come on that.

I’m really looking forward to the Nebula Awards Weekend starting tomorrow. I’ll try to get in one more post before the conference starts.

Thanks for reading!


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