Dog Days

They aren’t quite over, no matter what Florence and the Machine says, but as the summer begins to wane, I’m feeling more optimistic about so many more things than I was earlier this year. That shift has been on a lot of fronts both personally and professionally, and I’d be lying if that wasn’t also bolstered by the January 6th Committee’s hearings and the work across the nation to galvanize women voters after the Dobbs decision. The Inflation Reduction Act’s impact on climate change is also another point of optimism. While it is not enough, it is a much-needed start, and I can only hope we can build on from there. Plus it helps that the monsoon season here in Albuquerque has been amazing–I stopped taking rain for granted years ago when we first moved to New Mexico, and I still marvel when it torrents down, soaking the mountains and riding roughshod over the city as it makes its way to the river.

So some good things, even though that same river went dry earlier this year, even though a dear friend was killed last month by a motorist while on a family bike ride, even if I now officially need reading glasses after spending the overwhelming majority of my life with perfect vision, even though the daily grind continues always across multiple fronts. There is good with the bad, even if it can be fatiguing to search it out sometimes. So long as we keep looking for it with a weather eye on the horizon, we will be okay—that much I am certain of.

There have been some bright points this summer as well. For starters, I finally got my hands on my contributor copy of Chromophobia: A Strangehouse Anthology of Women in Horror. I’ve gone into more detail about my story in previous posts, but it was a great experience overall working with Sara and the creative team at Rooster Republic Press.

I also attended Armadillocon this summer. It was my first time back since lockdown, and while it felt a bit like ripping off a bandaid getting back into the swing of paneling, I had a great time reconnecting with the Austin area writers and readers. While it is so easy to feel forgotten in our field if you are for whatever reason unable to stay on the hamster wheel of publishing, my interactions with the con-goers showed that that’s not true, that those connections matter.

A good reminder, particularly with our local convention Bubonicon gearing up this weekend!

Finally I am excited to share that I’ve been asked to contribute a solarpunk short story to Solar Flare, one of four new anthologies that Zombies Need Brains will publish, so long as their Kickstarter campaign is successful. If you follow me on Twitter, I’m sure you’ve already seen me plugging the campaign. We’re more than halfway through, and I’m excited to dig into my story idea for the anthology. There are a lot of reward tiers for backers to contribute and three other anthologies chock-full of stories by some amazing creators. Please consider supporting if you are able.

That’s all for now. May the last days of summer treat you well!

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