The nomination period for the Nebula Awards is officially open, so it seems like an appropriate time to share what all I published this year. I’m also collecting eligibility posts and recommendation links from other folks. As you’re catching up on your year-end reading, please do check out the list. I update it regularly, and if you have your own links to share, please let me know! I’ll be posting my own favorite works from 2019 at some point as well, but in the meantime, here’s what I did this year.
How the Trick is Done appeared in the July/August 2019 issue of Uncanny Magazine. It’s a story about illusions, real magic, unrequited love, ghosts, and a rabbit who is most definitely not named Gus.
How many people can say they were there the night the trick went wrong and the Magician died on stage? Certainly, that first morning on the strip—dazed gamblers blinking in the rising light, the ambulance come and gone, with the smell of gunpowder lingering in the air—everyone claimed they knew someone who heard the Magician’s Assistant scream, saw the spray of blood, saw a man rush on stage and faint dead away.
The Ghost Sequences, appeared in Ellen Datlow’s anthology, Echoes: The Saga Anthology of Ghost Stories published by Saga Press in August 2019. I highly recommend checking out the whole anthology. It’s full of unsettling, haunting, beautiful stories, and at nearly 800 pages of fiction, you’re definitely getting your money’s worth. My particular contribution looks at art, and the nature of hauntings – what causes ghosts to linger, and what happens when the ones you want to stick around don’t.
“Now close your eyes and count to one hundred, then you can come back inside, Helen says. Libby closes her eyes and starts counting aloud while Helen walks backward toward the house. When she gets to the door, Helen is planning to lock it behind her, and then she’ll make the rest of the pack hide. But before Helen can get to the house, Libby screams, and Helen freezes. Libby is thrashing, clawing at the stocking. By the time the other girls run out of the house, it’s too late. Libby isn’t breathing. It’s as if something pulled her into the tree and left her there to hang.”
Catfish Lullaby is my first foray into longer fiction, a novella published by Broken Eye Books in September 2019. The best way I can think to describe it is Southern Gothic meets weird cosmic horror, with a helping of found family, family-by-blood, and queerness. It’s about monsters, but also the power of stories, and how legends are made.
There are stories about him from the Mississippi Delta all the way down to New Orleans. Every place’s got their own name for him – Wicked Silver, Old Tom, Fishhook – but where my people come from, smack dab in the middle of nowhere Louisiana, it was always Catfish John. Depending who you talk to, he’s either a hero or a devil, one so wicked even Hell won’t take him.
— Myths, History, and Legends from the Delta to the Bayou, Whippoorwill Press, 2016
My various review columns make me eligible for Best Fan Writer when it comes to the Hugos and, I believe, in the Related Work category for the Aurora Awards.
That’s it. Don’t forget to share your own eligibility posts, and check back for updates to my links compilation and for recommended reading posts coming a bit later in the year.