Since I’m gathering links and encouraging others to make their own award eligibility posts, I figured now would be a good time to put together my own. Here’s what I had published this year, by category.
“Exhalation #10”, Final Cuts: New Tales of Hollywood Horror and Other Spectacles edited by Ellen Datlow (Penguin Random, June 2020)
During the entire fifty-seven minutes of play time, the woman’s body slumps against a concrete wall, barely conscious. She’s starved, one arm chained above her head to a thick pipe. The light is dim, the shadows thick. The angle of her head, lolled against her shoulder, hides her face. The camera watches for fifty-seven minutes, capturing faint, involuntary movements—her body too weak for anything else—until her breathing stops.
“A Thousand Faces Minus One”, Evil in Technicolor edited by Joe M. McDermott (Vernacular Books, October 2020)
Donovan dreams of a man without a face. Or rather, the man has a face, but Donovan can’t see it. It’s hidden under a black hood, like a criminal in an old movie might wear as he’s about to hang. The man doesn’t do anything other than stand in the corner, but somehow that simple act induces a sense dread. The man has a message, or there’s something important Donovan has forgotten. The man has come to take away something Donovan loves. Donovan wishes the man would get it over with, but he only stands there, breathing, and the cloth over his mouth goes in and out, in and out.
“To Sail the Black“, Clarkesworld, November 2020
The ghost ship Xanthic Promise sails the black, powered by the slumbering heart of a dying star. And its captain, Antimony Jones, stalks its decks in a swirl of crimson coat and fox fire lighting, dogged by voices. The recent dead, the long dead, and the dead-to-be, all murmuring as to how she’s only three months into her command and it’s all coming undone.
“Split-Tail”, GlitterShip, Winter 2020
My sisters and mothers and aunts warned there were dangers on land, but not what those dangers might be. They never told how a kiss might undo me, take me from myself, make me want to wind the length of my tail around that sweet, shy man who spoke of sea stars and corals and blushed like the sun, and never let him go. I bruised his lips with mine, scraped my teeth against his fragile skin, and it wasn’t enough. I hungered, and so I fled, knowing if I stayed, I would drag him beneath waves and kiss him ’til he drowned.
“Teeth Long and Sharp as Blades“, Pseudopod, October 2020
Have you ever thought about how fairy tale heroines are like final girls? We survive poisoning, curses, imprisonment, mothers who want to cut our hearts out and hold them in their hands. But we survive, and our survival is an object lesson: act this way, and you’ll be all right. Be pure of heart. Be kind to strangers. Don’t go into the woods at night.
Women to Read at The Book Smugglers
Non-Binary Authors to Read at The Book Smugglers