short fiction update

A few things brewing in the short fiction arena, though nothing along the lines of “sold a story somewhere” —

  • “Your Voice Everywhere I Go” is still at, where it’s been for nearly a year now; as before, this means some of the editors liked it, but the acquiring editors have yet to look at it, or at any rate have yet to decide.
  • “Continents of Summer, Firmaments of Sun” was rejected from THE COMMON and has been at ASIMOV’S for a couple of weeks now. No reason for optimism that it’ll be accepted, but at least I’m moving forward with it.
  • I’ve finished a draft of the first Department of Crimes against Scum story, tentatively titled “Suicide Scum.” Not totally sure what to do with it. It definitely needs revision; I think the next question is whether I bother trying to sell it or just put it straight on Wattpad and the stores.
  • “Dispatch from a Colored Room” continues to syndicate drib-by-drab on Wattpad, but it’s now finalized, so I could self-publish it whenever I want. I guess there’s not really a good reason to wait. (“Dispatch” is meant to be a free introduction to THE DANDELION KNIGHT, so there’s not a whole lot of point in trying to sell it.)
  • Perhaps most interestingly, I’ve either been invited or invited myself (sort of hard to say) to a Wattpad anthology of stories about summer. I’m simultaneously trying out a couple of things, one a typical-for-me wistful near-future literaryish story called “Summer Sister,” and one a story in the world of THE EIGHTH KING called “Sack of the Summer Palace.” I think I like the latter better, and will finish it regardless, but may not be able to keep it below the word limit.

This is mostly to remind myself that things are happening in my creative sphere, despite my constant nagging feeling like nothing is getting done.

Oh, right, here’s the first paragraph of “Sack of the Summer Palace”:

The Rafters of the World are justly and unjustly famed for many things. The mandarins of the Orchid Court praise the refinements of poetry, strategy, and agriculture that have draped our dry and craggy lands with the rich silk of a flourishing society; the lamas of the White Way praise the favor of the deities that brought us the great prayer-engines of the Iron Harvest, whose secrets are like oysters, sweet to the persistent mind and lacerating to the hasty; the half-civilized zealots of the River whisper in fear of our deadly snakes, which they describe in terms that violate the precepts of physics and physiology, and croon with longing at the merest mention of our unremarkable goats. But even the albino barbarians, who betimes blow in on the spars of shattered ships or stumble arrow-pierced across our border with the Grass, are clear on one thing: Ua is not a warm realm. Warm days there are, aye, and warm regions, especially in the south of Degyen where the tableland begins its kowtow to the sea; but the kingdom’s fame is for chill cliffs, tree-deep avalanches, bears and tigers with fur enough to hide a brace of Therku lumberjacks and warm their lunchpails.

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