Part of the milky way from the Trouvelot astronomical drawings (1881-1882) by E. L. Trouvelot (1827-1895)

A Winter Update

The last few months sure have been SOMETHING, haven’t they? I don’t even know where to begin this post. I’ve never been great at small talk–a condition that’s only grown more pronounced this past year. How do you respond to, “How’s it going?” when the inside of your brain is just alarms, Swamps of Sadness, and one long, guttural scream that started sometime in the early 90s? You don’t. Thankfully, Zoom makes it easy for me to briefly embody my favorite emoji (😬) and move on. So let’s just pretend I did the same thing here, with a bonus, “I hope this finds you well…” (because I do).

Lacking any immediate solutions to offer for deadly global pandemics and/or deadly domestic terrorism, I can only (again) urge you to look for ways to help others in your community. Volunteer, donate, signal boost–whatever you can do with the time and resources you have. Small changes are all most of us can offer, but they do add up.

On to the update…

[Art by: Alexis Goble] Glowing golden sparkles and stars rising from an old, opened wooden treasure chest. Darkly lit on a planked surface with black chalkboard background.

[Art by: Alexis Goble]

Cast of Wonders surprised and delighted me earlier this year, by selecting my story, “The Half-Life of a Broken Heart,” as a 2020 Staff Pick. This story originally appeared in Factor Four Magazine (gone, but never forgotten) and then appeared on Episode 413 of Cast of Wonders in May 2020. You might recall that editor and host, Katherine Inskip, brought me to tears with her gorgeous commentary at that time. Well, Cast of Wonders is two for two now, because host Denise Sudell, the Cast of Wonders Community Manager, did it again with her moving commentary, specially recorded for this Staff Pick reissue. Denise’s analysis captured the heart (pun!) of this story as I originally imagined it and you can’t ask for a better feeling as a writer–or, as a person–than to have your heart be so clearly seen and understood. “The Half-Life of a Broken Heart” is one of my favorite stories and I’m so grateful it found such a wonderful second home…twice! Listen at the link below…

Cast of Wonders 446: The Half-Life of a Broken Heart (Staff Picks 2020)


In February, as part of the Women in Horror Month festivities, I was thrilled to join Nicole Givens Kurtz, Meghan Arcuri, and Kaaron Warren for HWA-NY’s Galactic Terrors reading series. Watch the recorded event here and subscribe to the Galactic Terrors newsletter for info on future readings.


In April and May, I’ll be leading a new slate of workshops for young writers (Spellcasters, Cryptozoolapalooza, and Super Spies & Top-Secret Tech) at The Center for Fiction–read all about it here!

Note: These online sessions sold-out last time, so if you have any young writers (ages 9-12) in your life who might be interested, please don’t wait to register! Also, please help spread the word on Twitter (and anywhere else)!


Finally, I have several exciting new short story publications coming up, but I don’t think I’m supposed to officially announce any of those sales yet. So I’ll just say this: these stories are three of my absolute favorites (which I know I say a lot, but I think I only try to publish the work I love the most), involving (respectively) haunted hotels, nature vengeance, and a taxi driver who transports the dead. More details coming soon!


[Image art by E. L. Trouvelot]

Glowing golden sparkles and stars rising from an old, opened wooden treasure chest. Darkly lit on a planked surface with black chalkboard background.

Out Today! “The Half-Life of a Broken Heart” on Cast of Wonders

[Art by: Alexis Goble. Glowing golden sparkles and stars rising from an old, opened wooden treasure chest. Darkly lit on a planked surface with black chalkboard background.]

The year was Tuesday, May 5th, 2020. It might have been the same day that drinking bleach as a means of preventing illness was suggested by a sitting president of the United States…or maybe that happened on a different day. Linear time is more of a gesture in 2020.

ANYWAY. I’d written this post, then failed to publish it before being sucked into the next void and for that I am truly sorry, because this is one of the big highlights of my year. My story, The Half-Life of a Broken Heart appeared in this week’s edition of Cast of Wonders (alongside a gorgeous story by Kelly Sandoval), in an episode appropriately titled, Little Wonders: Hearts in Boxes.

When I wrote this story, I was utterly lost in grief. So it always felt like it held an extra little bit of my soul. I couldn’t have entrusted it to better hands. Narrator Caroline Reid perfectly captured the heart of this story, and Katherine Inskip, who hosted this episode, shared a piece of her heart, with a personal story that moved me beyond words. I encourage you all to take a listen and then subscribe for more. The Escape Artists family of podcasts have been doing incredible work for years and I don’t believe they’ve received even a tenth of the credit they deserve for their contributions to speculative fiction.

My deepest gratitude to Caroline and Katherine and everyone at Cast of Wonders who was involved in this episode’s production, especially audio producer, Jeremy Carter; co-narrator Nichole Goodnight; and artist, Alexis Goble. Also, a big thank you to editor Richard Flores IV, who first published this story in Factor Four Magazine.

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New Story on PseudoPod!

I’m so excited for everyone to check out my new story, “When the Slipling Comes to Call,” which is up now at horror fiction podcast, PseudoPod.

Brilliantly narrated by M.K. Hobson and Tina Connolly, “When the Slipling Comes to Call,” is my first story-turned-podcast and finally hearing it on PseudoPod–the song is a real song now!–is an actual daydream come true. Seriously, ask my crit group! Speaking of, a hearty round of virtual high-fives to those wildly talented folks (Asha, Beth, David, Frances, and Shannon), as well as to my stoic first and final readers (Jon and Allison)–thank you, all!

Also, big thanks to Rebekah McKendry and David Ian McKendry, the fantastic hosts of this episode, as well as to producer Chelsea Davis. Finally, super extra special thanks to Artemis Rising 4 guest editor, Karen Bovenmyer, and associate editor Shawna Borman, for making all this possible. Now, go listen!

If you like what you hear, consider supporting Escape Artists by donating here or subscribing via Patreon so they can (fingers crossed) buy more of my stories. If you don’t like what you hear, consider supporting Escape Artists by donating here or subscribing via Patreon so they can buy different stories.

Also, read more about this episode’s wonderful cover art!

Coming Soon: Escape Artists’ Artemis Rising 4

Escape Artists revealed the absolutely GORGEOUS cover for Artemis Rising 4 today and gah! did I mention it is gorgeous? As if I wasn’t already ridiculously excited to be part of PseudoPod’s Artemis Rising 2018 line-up, this pushed me into all-the-Kermit-arms-times-infinity territory.

The artist behind this year’s cover is the exceptionally talented Geneva Benton. I’ve swooned over Benton’s work for FIYAH in the past, so I was especially delighted to see her art featured here as part of this event.

If you’re wondering, Artemis Rising is “a special month-long event across the Escape Artists podcasts featuring stories by women and nonbinary authors in genre fiction” and you can check out previous years’ stories via the Escape Artists’ archive.

Escape Artists podcasts are all FREE to enjoy (and they pay their writers professional rates). If you like FREE (and also like writers and artists to get paid), consider supporting Escape Artists by donating here or subscribing via Patreon. While you’re doing smart things with money, be sure to check out Geneva Benton’s shop for prints and tees featuring her incredible art–I recommend these fetching tees with the Artemis Rising 4 illustration. Also, be sure to take a look at Benton’s current Kickstarter for her forthcoming storybook, Allie & Gator.