All About Chromophobia!

My very first horror short story “Gray Rock Method” is forthcoming later this year in Chromophobia: A Strangehouse Anthology by Women in Horror, edited by Sara Tantlinger and published by Rooster Republic Press. While the launch is a couple of months away, the marketing for the anthology kicked into high gear last month, showcasing all the different authors and providing sneak peeks of the amazing stories that have been selected for the anthology.

Chromophobia: A Strangehouse Anthology by Women in Horror

In the first author roundtable, contributors were asked what fictional character they’d most like to have dinner with (Chromophobia Author Roundup 1). This was followed by why authors are drawn to the horror genre (Chromophobia Author Roundup 2). We were also asked to name some of our favorite women horror writers (Chromophobia Author Roundup 3). Finally, we were asked to talk up our stories for the anthology (Chromophobia Author Roundup 4). I had a blast coming up with my answers to these thoughtful questions and reading the responses of my fellow contributors, so be sure to check them out.

Also, in order to whet your appetite for the anthology, you can also read teasers from each story (including mine!)—just follow the links below:

If you think that’s all, the publisher will be showing off the interior art for the anthology over the course of April:

SO, all this to say, stay tuned for more Chromophobia goodness! Pre-orders for the hardcover version of the anthology are happening now.

Coming Soon: Best of DreamForge Magazine Antho

Happy to announce my story “Sing! And Remember” will be included in Worlds of Light and Darkness: The Best of DreamForge and Space and Time Magazines (Volume 1), edited by Angela Yuriko-Smith and Scot Noel, and published by Uproar Books.

Includes my fantasy short story “Sing! And Remember”!

This story is one of my recent favorites, and in addition to being published in the inaugural issue of DreamForge Magazine, it was also included on Tangent’s Recommended Reading List for 2019.

I’m grateful I’ll be sharing a TOC with some of my wonderful writing colleagues, including Jane Lindskold, John Jos Miller, and Sarena Ulibarri, and all the other contributors who write stories of hope and connection and bright futures. Plus, just look at that cover!

You can check out the announcement at DreamForge’s site or pre-order the book directly from Uproar. It releases May 2021!

Join Me for Shrouded Loyalties Launch!

I’m thrilled to be joining author Reese Hogan for the launch of Shrouded Loyalties, her Angry Robot debut, at 2pm on Saturday, August 17th, at the Barnes and Noble in Albuquerque. We’ll be talking books, writing -punk subgenres, and more! If you’re in New Mexico, you don’t want to miss it!

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“Hogan writes with tangible energy, capturing the trials of divided loyalties in the midst of global war… Fans of military SF will enjoy Hogan’s fresh take on the genre.” —Publishers Weekly

A Message From Reese (Facebook):

Join me to celebrate the release of my new Angry Robot novel SHROUDED LOYALTIES, a military sci fi about submarines, alternate realms, spies, and enemy collaboration! Cyberpunk author Lauren Teffeau will be joining me to do a featured discussion about the book, a reading, and a Q&A from the audience. There will also be giveaway baskets and refreshments, and of course, autographed copies for sale! Can’t wait to see you there! 

Be sure to check out Reese’s website and learn a bit more about her writing journey here.

For Your Consideration – Implanted

It’s awards season, the time of year that strikes fear into the heart of every writer while simultaneously stoking the flames of what-ifs.

The only thing I have that’s award-eligible this year, is my debut science fiction novel Implanted, that was published by Angry Robot this August in trade paperback and ebook. An audiobook version came out at the end of October from High Bridge Audio. I’m immensely proud of it, between its mash-up of cyberpunk and solarpunk elements, the homage to espionage and romance, and a deep-dive into communication theory.

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After all, when you’re writing about the future, you can never have too many ideas in my opinion. And mine tend to come to me snarled together, interwoven and inseparable, or in great big chains like dominoes falling into place, one right after another.

It’s gotten some great reviews, between the ambitious world and a turbo-charged second half, but I’d love for it to find even more readers. In case you’re still on the fence about the book, here’s a look at some of the themes I explore in Implanted:

This is a story about the coming climate apocalypse.

So many different potential futures stretch out before us. But as recent reports suggest, it’s increasingly likely we’ll have to pay the piper for all the damage we’ve wrought to Mother Nature, and god help us when that debt comes due. In the world of Implanted, the worst has already happened. After too many years of storm-leveled towns, receding coastlines, drought, flood, pollution, and devastating fighting over food and resources as governments try (and fail) to provide for their people, domed cities have become humanity’s only option to escape the ravages of a world pushed to the brink after so many years of abuse.

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What would make such a disruptive population shift into a constrained environment successful? Think about it. If you had to bundle up your life, abandon your home, and take refuge in a domed city, what would bring you solace?

This is (also) a story about hyperconnectivity.

For the citizens of New Worth, it’s neural implants that make day-to-day life more bearable along with the network that provides them with an unending array of information, entertainment, and ways to connect with other users. After all, when you lose everything, what’s one more piece of your humanity?

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Roughly two generations later, when the book starts, the tech has matured with the city. While everyone in New Worth is granted equal protection from the hostile environment outside, their lives inside the dome are dictated by status, credit balances, and career potential. Those with the right credentials have every advantage as they literally rise through the ranks, living out their lives on the city’s luxurious upper levels. Everyone else remains landlocked below – choked off from light, constrained by space, and constantly inundated by others tied to the same fate. The one bright spot on the horizon is Emergence – the day when the dome finally comes down, and they can return to the land.

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After all this time, implants are still most people’s go-to choice to cope with living under glass. But taming the network’s growth has become virtually impossible – too much of the city’s infrastructure relies on it – which in turn has made data security increasingly difficult.

So… this is also a story about information security.

The government and business sectors have been sinking so much money and manpower into chasing down bugs and backdoors and staying on top of new advances, they’ve had to come up with a new way of doing things. Getting back to basics, with a twist, of course. Physical instead of digital delivery of information, the twist being the DNA-encoded blood cells as the new format.

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Enter Aventine Security, a clandestine organization that specializes in shuttling information too sensitive for the network across the city. What makes their elite couriers so special isn’t the state-of-the-art training or gear they’ve been provided with, but a special property of their blood that allows them to carry encoded information that makes it undetectable, unhackable, and untraceable. And people are willing to pay top dollar for their services…and their discretion.

And perhaps most importantly, Implanted is a female-centered cyberpunk story.

Which in my mind at least we need more of. Men’s visions of our technological future dominate the field, too often filled with oversexualized women with problematic characterization (dentata’s anyone?). The list of women publishing cyberpunk is short though memorable (frex. Pat Cadigan, Laura Mixon, Madeline Ashby, KC Alexander), and I humbly add Implanted to that list, where I tried to cram together as many things I love as I could, including high-tech gadgets, light espionage, romance, and hard questions about the future, while centering the female experience.

And I very much hope you’ll join me on the adventure…

Here, There, Everywhere

This past weekend was MileHiCon in Denver. I went for the first time and had a fantastic couple of days. I moderated a panel on writing short stories and one on dystopian fashion, and I really enjoyed the resulting conversations with my fellow panelists. Plus getting to see Connie Willis, Carrie Vaughn, Paolo Bacigalupi, and a bunch of friends from the NM writing community all in one place was wonderful.

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A view from the hotel lobby that reminded me of New Worth

MileHiCon is also the very last event I have planned for Implanted’s launch. Which would be sad if I wasn’t so exhausted from doing all the things these past few months. I cannot wait to get back to my old writing routine and the projects I’ve had to set aside. So it’s not so much an ending but another beginning, right?

I’ve already talked about the Implanted launch party and the joint event I did with Rebecca Roanhorse at BookBar. But a few weeks ago I also had an event at Bookworks in Albuquerque and another for my alma mater Clemson University.

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The Bookworks appearance was a lot of fun, and I got a chance to talk with some of the attendees and staff in greater depth than some of the other events I’ve done this year thanks to the welcoming space.

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Then, roughly a week later, I went back to Clemson where I went to undergrad. Thanks to Thompson Mefford who’s been a good friend all through college and beyond and is now a professor there, I was able to speak with aspiring writers in Clemson’s Honors College. I was a member of the Honors College as well back in the day, so it felt a little like coming full circle. I was super impressed by the enthusiasm and insightful questions the students had and hope they’ll keep writing!


In addition to all these events and convention appearances, I’ve also done a number posts around the interwebs. Latest highlights include:


Here’s a recap of some recent reviews of Implanted that make my heart happy. Needless to say I’m thrilled people are enjoying the book!

Having Faith Book Reviews | The Return Cart | Hopeless Bibliophile

The Albuquerque Science Fiction Society said in the October issue of ASFACTS that “Teffeau has created a fast-paced, exciting novel with great worldbuilding,” along with other nice things.

Plus in my first video review (!) Tod Foley of This is Fractopia also had some great things to say about Implanted and how it relates to fractopian fiction:

 


Finally, the audiobook version of Implanted (!) is finally out in the world. It’s narrated by Lauren Ezzo and produced by High Bridge Audio. I hope you’ll take a listen!

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That’s it for me!