Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Cat Days of Summer

August has been busy.

I have a new job and a new roommate. His name is Lionel. I picked him up from Kitty Connection a couple weeks ago. He's sweet and well behaved and likes to bully me awake by purring and buffeting me with his face. He's two-years old and the best.

One of my poems will be published at Strange Horizons soon! I'll be blasting social media about it when it appears.

The More (Than) Human podcast is ten episodes old! Yay! Go listen to it for all my thoughts on superheroes, etc.

I've been updating my art blog more. I'm wondering if I should try doing some illustrated projects.

It's almost fall. After the heat waves this summer, I'm looking forward to it.

Thursday, July 21, 2016

Mentee Seeks Novel Mentor!

This is it! My bio for Pitch Wars!

Let me give it to you.

What's this?

Brenda Drake, a YA author, started the annual contest, PitchWars. In it, publishing professionals (authors and editors) kindly give over their valuable personal time to mentor to writers seeking representation for their manuscript.

One of the things you can do to get ready is write a bio per Lana Pattinson's #PimpMyBio.

So I am doing that.

Right now.

About Me

I'm originally from Cleveland (home of god child, Lebron James) and have been living in Boston since 2011.

I moved there after doing the six week, intensive, fantasy and science fiction writing workshop, Clarion. It made me more connected to the writing community than I have ever been before.

I have published short fiction and poetry in pro and semi-pro writing magazine markets!

Strong female characters are awesome. Dynamic female characters from different backgrounds, perspectives, and modes of strength in a narrative where none of them are The One Girl are even better.

I like to babysit people's cats and house plants when they're away.

I'm bi and like to write queer and LGBTQA+ (QUILTBAG?) characters.

I have a podcast with a friend where we yell about superhero movies!

I've been a panelist at ReaderconBoskone, and Arisia to talk about Doctor Who, anime, myth, fairy tales, fanfic Mary-Sues, Outlander, Harry Potter, comic books, Marvel movies, and many, many other things.

I've worked in academic publishing.

I dislike soda and love homemade smoothies.

My friends at my writing group, BSPEC, including Emily Strong, got me interested in doing this!

About My Book

High school freshman Elsie saves the life of a magical boy exiled from Faerie.

This is great. He's also Puck, King Oberon's powerful servant. Now, due to Faerie law, he becomes bound to her every whim until he can repay the favor. 

At first, Puck’s impulsive magic and companionship opens up Elsie’s world. This includes having her face conflicted, romantic feelings toward childhood friend, Pollyanna. 

But he has a dark sense of humor. His mischief turns increasingly dangerous and Elsie must find a way to break the bond in case people are hurt, even though she and Puck have started to become friends.

Unfortunately, Puck has enlisted the help of Queen Mab to break the bond, and she's a powerful ally with no sense of scale.

Puck is a young adult suburban fantasy recasting the characters from Shakespeare's A Midsummer Night's Dream. It's looking for a good mentor and a good home.

Why Pick Me

I'm ready for a mentor!  After critiquing, re-writing, and re-structuring my novel over the course of years, the only piece missing is an industry professional to show me the light!

I've been taking constructive criticism since middle school, where I participated in the school's official writing club, Power of the Pen. Yes, that's the name.

I'm a hard worker ready to make enormous revisions!

And I just need to find the person to help!

Some of My Favorite Things

Books: Among Others by Jo Walton, Tithe by Holly Black, The Ocean at the End of the Lane by Neil Gaiman, The Diary of a Teenage Girl: An Account in Words and Pictures by Phoebe Gloeckner, My Happy Life by Lydia Millet, Ender's Game by Orson Scott Card, One Hundred Years of Solitude by Gabriel García Márquez, Swordspoint by Ellen Kushner, Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban by J.K. Rowling

Movies and TV shows: Guardians of the GalaxyBeasts of the Southern Wild, Princess Mononoke, Tokyo Godfathers, Back to the Future, Parks and Recreation

Thank you and best of luck to all mentors, mentees, and participants!

Saturday, July 2, 2016

Readercon 2016

The Readercon program schedule is up! And I'm doing five panels and a reading! Because I believe in signing up for all the things.

Come up and see me this coming weekend!

Thursday, July 7th

9:00 PM 5 The Life and Times of Mary Sue. Gillian Daniels, Gemma Files, Ben Francisco, Barbara Krasnoff (moderator), Natalie Luhrs. New Republic senior editor Jeet Heer wrote, in a short Twitter essay about Mary Sues, "The popularity of the term 'Mary Sue' really says everything you need to know about sexism in fandom/nerdom." Instead of unpacking the concept of Mary Sue, we'd like to zero in on the troubled history of this term, why it's troubled, and how better to talk about "self-insertion" in fiction without the sexism.

Friday, July 8th

12:00 PM C The Works of Catherynne M. Valente. Jonathan Crowe, Gillian Daniels, Liz Gorinsky (leader), Kathleen Howard. Catherynne Valente has been a professional fortune teller, telemarketer, private tutor, librarian, waitress, bartender, actress, and statistician, but she is best known as a novelist and poet, having published over two dozen novels and poetry collections. She has been nominated for or won every major award in science fiction and fantasy: the Hugo (2010, 2012, 2013, 2014), the Nebula (2013, 2014), Locus (2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014), and the World Fantasy Award (2007, 2009, 2011, 2014). In the Night Garden (2006) won the James Tiptree Jr. Award; The Orphan's Tales (2006-2007) won the Mythopoeic Award; "The Seven Devils of Central California" won the Rhysling Award (2008); Palimpsest won the Lambda Award (2010). In 2010, The Girl Who Circumnavigated Fairyland in a Ship of Her Own Making became the first self-published work to win a major literary award, winning the Andre Norton Award. The sequel, The Girl Who Fell Beneath Fairyland and Led the Revels There, was listed by Time Magazine and NPR as one of the ten best books of 2012. The New York Times has called her "an incandescent young star." Join our panelists in a discussion of her work.

6:00 PM 5 Author Trademark or Personal Cliché?. F. Brett Cox, Gillian Daniels, Karen Heuler (leader), Alex Jablokow, Bud Sparhawk. Most writers occasionally suspect that they are writing the same type of story over and over again. Some writers set out to do so. Is this a good thing or bad? Our panelists will examine which writers persistently revisit the same images, themes, characters, or situations, and discuss when and for whom this revisiting works and when and for whom it does not. The panelists will discuss how they handle this situation, when they realize the story they're writing seems too familiar. Should the story be discarded because it's already been written, or should a writer continue and try to discover the source of the weird power it holds for them? Panelists will discuss which writers they admire, and what distinctive features make them exceptional and unique. Panelists will also come up with a few strategies to help audience members (and perhaps each other) see their work in a new light, using everything from literary influences to music and movies to dreams and the unconscious.

7:00 PM 6 Sensuality and Exploitation. Gillian Daniels (moderator), Ben Francisco, Elaine Isaak, Nick Kaufmann, Vinnie Tesla. Sex in fiction, as in real life, is often fraught with questions. Our panelists will discuss sex in science fiction and fantasy and what they consider representative or exploitative. Where and when do you draw the line? Is someone's trashy beach read someone else's master's thesis in 20th- and 21st century courtship?

Saturday, July 9th

1:00 PM 5 If Thor Can Hang Out with Iron Man, Why Can't Harry Dresden Use a Computer? . Gillian Daniels, Elaine Isaak, Andrea Phillips, Alex Shvartsman, E.J. Stevens. In a series of tweets in 2015, Jared Axelrod pondered "the inherent weirdness of a superhero universe... where magic and science hold hands, where monsters stride over cities." This is only weird from the perspective of fantasy stories that set up magic and technology as incompatible, an opposition that parallels Western cultural splits between religion and science and between nature and industry. Harry Dresden's inability to touch a computer without damaging it is a direct descendant of the Ents destroying the "pits and forges" of Isengard, and a far cry from Thor, Iron Man, and the Scarlet Witch keeping company. What are the story benefits of setting up magic/nature/religion and technology/industry/science as either conflicting or complementary? What cultural anxieties are addressed by each choice? How are these elements handled in stories from various cultures and eras?

Sunday, July 10th

1:00 PM A Reading: Gillian Daniels reads a short story