Posts Tagged ‘story’

A bit of good news.

Still slowly working at the novel and restarting my short story submission process. And of course time is still being fickle. It’s hard to find enough to work my money-job, read for shimmer, write, submit and make time for all the social opportunities around me (I guess it’s a pretty high class problem that there’s too many fun things to do.) 😛

Oh, and I need to find time to exercise. And do yoga. And relax. And eat. And sleep …

Anyway, before I sleep, I wanted to note that I’m feeling better and better about my writing progress, though I’m still aware of blowing out a year’s worth of cobwebs in my writer brain.

Anyway anyway, I was falling asleep when I was woken up by a notice of a nice review from Nathaniel Katz.

Of the fuller stories, most are quite successful. In his introduction to The Exit to San Breta (in Dreamsongs), George R.R. Martin says that he wanted to update the ghost story, taking the traumatized undead from gothic mansions and putting them in the middle of where modern tragedy occurred: the expressways. Taking Martin’s 1972 logic and bringing it to the 21st century, Grá Linnaea and Sarah Dunn explore death through facebook in Messages from Valerie Polichar. Over the course of the story, Valerie becomes a sympathetic character, and the way that she becomes obsessed and then is taken over by her obsession is chilling.


Standouts [of issue 2]: Sweepers, The Rat Burner, Messages from Valerie Polichar

Yay. Thanks, Nathaniel

You can read the whole review here. And of course you can still purchase a copy of Shock Totem.

Somehow, I’d missed this earlier review by Sheila Merritt, who also seemed to really like the story.

The outstanding story in the volume is Message From Valerie Polichar.

I never thought folks would go for such a quirky little story. When I read it out loud at Orycon, all I could hear was how … unstorylike its structure was. I was pleasantly shocked when “Messages from Valerie Polichar” was recommended for a Stoker Award. I guess I’ll just have to admit that some people like it.

All of which is to say it’s nice to be reminded that I can write.

Anyway, off to bed.

art day 38 – [story fragment] Tap tap tap

This little piece of weirdness came out of a five minute exercise:


Sometimes I type. I sit with my hands perfectly spaced, little j and f nubs under my index fingers. Sometimes I pretend to type and I sit with my hands poised as though ready for action, my brow furrowed as if I had been caught just that second in the middle of the very groundbreaking thought that would set the cardboard manufacturing industry on its ear.
I like to imagine everyone thinking, “Oh, how productive he is. That Johnson is a go-getter, he is.”
Tap tap tap.
Sometimes I type, but without intent. I just tappity tappity tappity with abandon, my mind off in the farthest reaches of time and space.
Sometimes the letters clump together and make all sorts of pretty shapes on the screen. Sometime words spontaneously appear within the noise. Sometimes they tell me things.
Tap tap tap.

art day 26 – [story fragment] My Best Story EVAR!

I haven’t quite finished this story. But it really wowed them at Clarion. The potential it has…


[Need a killer opening line.]

[Really vivid setting details. (Don’t forget the character … quirky!)]

[Have to research hard sci-fi sciency stuff. Make people think i’m smart.]

[Something awesome happens!]

[Try fail cycle. (Thematic allusions to feminist critique of capitalism?)]

[Depressing fatalistic ending. (Kill the baby?)]