Monday, October 22, 2012

Cool Stuff

Today, apparently, was the day of extremely cool stuff happening to me as a writer and editor.

The first thing that happened was that I logged into Facebook and saw a post from the editor of the forthcoming Duty and Desire, which includes my short story, "Dead on Her Feet" (not to mention Lynn's "Snake Dance"), noting that freaking Publishers Weekly had a review of the anthology -- which is awesome -- and that they called it "highly recommended" -- which is beyond awesome. It might only have been awesomer (shut up, spellcheck, I'm a writer; I'm allowed to make up words) if one of the mentioned stories had been mine, but I'll be honest: my story in this anthology serves as more of an aperitif or a sorbet to cleanse the palate between meatier selections than as a featured course in its own right. Don't get me wrong, "Dead on Her Feet" is a very sweet little story and I quite like both the writing and the characters, but it doesn't contain a whole lot of punch.

Then I did some more work on editing the stories for the zombie anthology I'm editing, He Loves Me For My Brainsss. Which only served to remind me how frakking amazing and talented the authors are in this book. Seriously, I'm editing my little heart out, but mostly what I'm telling my authors is that they need to go to family therapy with commas and semicolons, which is honestly a ridiculously minimal problem to be having at the initial editing round. These stories are fun or funny or touching, the characters bicker and snipe and love each other deeply (sometimes all at the same time), the plots are witty and engaging and even surprising. And the authors themselves are remarkably responsive; I don't think I've yet written one of them and not at least gotten an acknowledging email back within a couple of hours. Tops. It's possible that this is going to spoil me for all future anthologies.

And finally, while I was working on that, I got an email inviting me to come to MarsCon in January. When the email notification popped up in the corner of my screen, I nearly ignored it. I saw "MarsCon" in the title and figured I'd gotten on the email list -- I've been going to this con for several years in a row -- and I assumed this was an email to remind me to register. But that little "new mail" icon burns at my soul and I can't leave it alone for long, so I went to open it, just to clear the notification icon... and it wasn't a mass mailing. It was an email inviting me to come to MarsCon as a guest, to participate in some of the late-night, adults-only panels. Last year, I attended a few late-night discussion panels as part of the audience, and I had a blast. The late hour (and age-restricted attendance) lent itself to some spicy, intimate, downright fun discussions. And this year, they want me to sit on the other side of the table? Holy eff, yes. I waited long enough to be sure that my kids would be safely stashed somewhere (the Almost-Ex agreed to swap custody weekends with me) before I sent back my barely-suppressed squee of agreement and made my hotel reservations.

(Funny but true: as the crow flies, it's less than a mile from my house to the convention hotel. But because of the wonky way the streets are laid out here, it's more like a five-mile drive. It's still very close by, and it seems ridiculous to get a hotel room when it's that close... but the last couple of years have taught me that if I have to get in the car to go somewhere I can change clothes or drop off my purchases, then it's not close enough. Especially if I'm going to be helping to moderate the late-night panels, I want to be able to just stagger back to my room and collapse rather than have to go out into the cold and drive home afterward.)

Add to that my continuing excitement over Seductress' release last week, and my anticipation for the release of Weird Science in two days (stay tuned for the usual Wednesday post, which will feature buy links and some celebratory excerpts!), and today was just a very, extremely fantastic day to be a writer/editor.

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