Scarecrow Hangs by Jane Yolen Kakashi and Crow by Megan Fennell Only the Land Remembers by Amanda Block Skin Map by Kim Goldberg Waking from His Master’s Dream by Katherine Marzinsky A Fist Full of Straw by Kristina Wojtaszek Judge and Jury by Laura VanArendonk Baugh The Straw Samurai by Andrew Bud Adams Black Birds by Laura Blackwood Edith and I by Virginia Carraway Stark Scarecrow Progressions (Rubber Duck Remix) by Sara Puls Truth About Crows by Craig Pay The Roofnight by Amanda C. Davis Two Steps Forward by Holly Schofield If I Only Had an Autogenic Cognitive Decision Matrix by Scott Burtness
I love this lineup and I cannot wait to share it with the world 🙂
(Titles and such are subject to change right up until publication, of course)
I don’t really make New Year’s Resolutions, because I’m crap at keeping them, but I do enjoy setting goals for the coming year each January. I find them super helpful staying focused and find the accountability which comes from sharing them publicly really helps as well. This year I’m a wee bit late on getting this blog post done, so it may be slightly less chatty than in years past, but without further ado, here are some of my work-related goals for the coming year (and health counts because you can’t work if you’re not at least a certain degree of healthy).
Weigh less at the end of the year than I do at the start
No working on weekends and minimal working on evenings.
Editing / Publishing
Publish the final three issues of Niteblade and then close down that aspect of the magazine
Complete Corvidae and market it to the best of my ability
Complete Scarecrow and market it to the best of my ability
Write and submit at least one new short story a month*
The ‘submit’ part of this is important. I can’t just write a first draft and leave it to moulder indefinitely. The story needs to be ready for submission and, in fact, submitted, within the month to count.
Begin querying agents about Hollow
Self-publish at least one collection of reprints
Complete work on collaborative project with Marge
Successfully participate in April Poem-A-Day
This means actually writing a poem a day or at least having thirty poems written by the end of the month
Participate in NaNoWriMo*
Either complete the first draft of a new novel, or revise one of the novel first drafts I’ve already written (this can be completed in conjunction with NaNoWriMo or separate from it)
Read at least 50 books
Slush doesn’t count, nor do books by friends I read to critique.
When someone visits this blog and leaves a comment — reciprocate.
As of New Year’s Eve of 2014 I’d sold a total of one book via Kobo**. One. For a whopping $0.45 in royalties. One of my goals in 2015 is to improve that. I don’t have a super firm goal in mind but it shouldn’t be too difficult to top one sale and less than fifty cents in royalties, right?
I’ll probably tweak this list as the year goes on, but for now I think it’s a very good jumping-off point 🙂
*under this name or as a pen name project. Either counts.
**this doesn’t count books I didn’t self-publish like Fae, Metastasis etc.
You know what the last couple months have taught me? Editing two anthologies which are meant to be companions for one another is not twice as much work as editing one anthology. It is exponentially more work.
That’s not meant to imply that it’s been a chore, not even close. But it has been more difficult and time-consuming than I had anticipated. And that, right there, is the only excuse you’ll hear from me about why it’s taking me longer than usual to respond to submissions.
It is taking me longer than usual, and I apologize for that but I am working on it, I promise.
Acceptances for CORVIDAE have begun to trickle out. Only a few so far, but there are more to come so if you haven’t heard from me one way or the other, please don’t panic**. Also, if you’ve submitted to both CORVIDAE and SCARECROW, you may have to wait a little longer than those who only submitted to one or the other because I often prefer to respond to both submissions at the same time. I know that doesn’t really seem fair, but try not to hold it against me too much.
Acceptances have not yet begun to go out for SCARECROW submissions, but they will soon. We’re just finalizing a couple of things in the background and then the mail will begin to flow.
In the meantime, I have some fun stats… for people who find this sort of thing fun LOL I may blog about these in a bit more detail in the future, but for now, just some numbers. Let’s call them ‘approximate’ numbers because there’s no reason to believe I didn’t make a mistake at some point.
Corvidae Submission Stats:
Rewrite requests made: 2
Number of stories with no corvids*: 9
Number of stories submitted to me more than once: 3
Scarecrow Submission Stats:
Rewrite requests made: 1
Number of stories with no scarecrows*: 2
Re-tellings of Feathertop: 2
And lastly, an exciting announcement:
The incomparable Magnus E. Magpie (also known as YEGMagpie) has agreed to read both SCARECROW and CORVIDAE and offer a corvid’s perspective as a tweet-sized commentary to every story. I can’t wait to see what Magnus (who has even run for mayor) will have to say about these stories! 🙂
*literal or otherwise, as best as I could tell
**though, if you’re worried about your submission, by all means, query.
When I looked at the list of things I wanted to signal boost this week I actually felt a little dizzy. “How the hell am I going to fit Twitter, Facebook and blog posts for all those things in without sounding like a social media spam-bot?” I wondered.
Then I got smart and decided to just put all the things into one big blog post. Yay!
Firstly, check out this character portrait:
This is Bayne.
He’s a half-incubus swordsman who figures prominently in many of the stories I’ve written set in Aphanasia (Sister Margaret, Lost and Found and the forthcoming Shadows — which is subject to re-naming LoL).
Bayne is also the character I will be playing with at the Character Death Matches at Pure Spec next month and he’s also the only character from those stories who hasn’t been on a book cover… so didn’t have a portrait.
My daughter, Danica, felt bad for me as she watched me struggle to find a stock image I could crop, Photoshop or otherwise fake to fit my character and she drew this portrait for me 🙂 He looks a little younger in this than he is in the stories I’ve written about him thus far… but I’m taking this as a sign that perhaps I ought to write some stories about a younger Bayne… someday.
Anyway, I’m super lucky to have such a talented kid who is willing to draw character portraits for me. Thank you, Danica! He’s awesome and I love it 🙂
As I mentioned, Bayne features strongly in Aphanasian Stories. If you haven’t read Aphanasian Stories and you like straight-up fantasy, have I got good news for you.
This week I’m participating in #CreepyFreebies. As part of that I am giving away copies of the most recent issue of Niteblade and I’m running a raffle to win a copy of Aphanasian Stories.
However… there’s this t-shirt I wanted (Roots of Remedy) but my Paypal account was a bit short, so I spontaneously decided to put Aphanasian Stories on a super big sale — 70% off (Coupon code: VG96R at Smashwords — click here) to try to top it up a bit*.
That made me feel bad for having Aphanasian Stories as the raffled off item, so I’ll also be throwing in a copy of White Noise for whoever wins. And if you win and you already own a copy of Aphanasian Stories, I’ll give you something else instead. Because.
I’m not just doing CreepyFreebies though. I’m also taking part in #CoffinHop2014 🙂 This is a super fun little system where rather than interviewing one zombie author a day, Julianne instead asks several of us one question each day. The posts are pretty short too, which in today’s world full of constant distractions, seems like a good thing. So far the posts have included:
I was interviewed by Virginia from StarkLight Press recently to celebrate the launch of White Noise. It’s not a very long interview, only about six questions worth, but I really think it gives a lot of insight into what’s going on in my skull. If you’re even a little intrigued, it’s a quick read that ought to satisfy some of your curiosity. You can check it out here:
Annnnnnd there’s only a few days left to get your submissions in for Scarecrow and Corvidae. Our deadline is Halloween, which is my 10 year anniversary so you can bet I won’t be sitting at my computer watching midnight come around so I can officially cut off submissions, BUT if your work isn’t in my inbox by the time I get up on Saturday I won’t be able to consider it.
Related to anthologies, at the World Weaver Press hosted #SFFLunch last week we announced the subject matter for my next WWP anthology:
When submissions open (in 2015) I’ll be looking for siren stories to fill its pages 🙂
Lastly, I think. I will be attending World Fantasy Convention next month, as will several of the authors from Fae and A is for Apocalypse. I’ll post another reminder nearly the time, but just as a head’s up, C.S. MacCath will be having a reading where she’ll be reading from her A is for Apocalypse story, N is for… on Thursday afternoon (plus I’ll be reading part of it with her, so be sure to come by to watch me shake in my boots) AND Adria Laycraft will have a reading Saturday evening which will feature her story from Fae, Water Sense.
Unrelated to this post at all, but I have noticed that my website is running slowly these days. I’m in the process of moving domains over to a new host as they come up for renewal so please bear with me until that process is done at which time things should speed up significantly.
*Great plan except that the Smashwords quarter comes at the end of December LOL Oops. #brainfart
I’m super excited to announce that my anthologies, Scarecrow and Corvidae are now open to submissions 🙂
For Corvidae I’m looking for stories featuring all sorts of corvids. I want your magpies, your jackjaws, crows, jays and more. For Scarecrow then, you’ll be shocked to hear I’m looking for stories about scarecrows 😉 Scarecrows of all types, goofy, scary, mindless, omniscient…
I am incredibly excited to announce that Fae has officially become the first in a series of anthologies I will be editing for World Weaver Press!
Though submissions are not yet open for our next titles we announce their existence this afternoon on WWP’s month #SFFlunch chat on Twitter so I’m able to share the news with you.
Corvidae and Scarecrow will be the second and third titles I will be editing for WWP (and there may be more in the future, wait and see!)
Corvidae is going to be dedicated to stories about corvids, all kinds of corvids. Crows, ravens, magpies, bluejays, nutcrackers, treepies, choughs… you name ’em, I want to see ’em. I’m looking for fantasy stories (horror is okay as long as it’s not gratuitous) that span the spectrum of light to dark.
Scarecrow is going to be all about scarecrows. Having seen them in everything from The Wizard of Oz to Doctor Who I’ve developed quite a taste for the range of ways scarecrows have been portrayed in the past and want to explore even more new and exciting ones in this anthology. Again I’ll be looking for stories that cover a large spectrum in terms of mood.
Scarecrow and Corvidae are meant to be companion anthologies, in conversation with one another. One of the ways to make my job easier in that regard (and I’m always looking for ways to make my job easier) will be to have overlap between the authors included in the two anthologies. With that in mind I am encouraging people to submit to both anthologies. Not the same story, you understand, but if you happen to have a great idea for a corvid story and an incredible scarecrow story I would very much like to see them both. Also, before someone asks, it is not required to submit to both and submitting to only one will not hurt your chances of acceptance.
Submissions won’t open until July but I was too excited to keep this to myself any longer, and I figured the sooner I shared it the sooner people could start brainstorming stories for these two books.
Anthologist: Rhonda Parrish
Publisher: World Weaver Press
Scarecrows have been portrayed as everything from empty-headed geniuses to malevolent demons. They’ve appeared in literature and mythology, from as far back as ancient Japan where Kuebiko, the god of agriculture is represented as a wise scarecrow who cannot walk, to more modern representations in Doctor Who. They are supervillains and storybook heroes, hapless and powerful. Wonderfully paradoxical creatures, much like the birds they are (in their most practical forms) meant to scare away. It is no wonder they capture our imaginations the way they do. It’s time the world had an anthology filled with scarecrow stories.
I will be looking for fresh twists on these ancient characters, exotic locations (both real and imagined), three-dimensional characters, and engaging voices.
Scarecrow will be an anthology of well-written fantasy and horror stories (nothing gratuitously gory or violent) of up to 7,500 words long.
Note: I feel somewhat bad using this particular picture alongside this blog because I’m not only looking for dark stories. In fact, though I definitely want some stories on the dark side of the spectrum I will be sad and disappointed if I don’t receive lighter pieces as well.
Scarecrow will be published alongside a companion anthology, Corvidae. We intend for the two books to be in conversation with one another and so would like some overlap between the authors included in each title. Thus we encourage writers to submit to both anthologies. Please do not submit the same story to both books (if the anthologist believes a story is more appropriate for one than the other she will let you know).
Rights and compensation: Payment: $10 and a paperback copy of the anthology from World Weaver Press. We are looking for previously unpublished works in English. Seeking first world rights in English and exclusive right to publish in print and electronic format for six months after publication date, after which publisher retains nonexclusive right to continue to publish for the life of the anthology.
Open submission period: July 1, 2014 – October 31, 2014
Length: Under 7,500 words
Submission method: Email story as a .doc or .rtf attachment to fae [at] worldweaverpress [dot] com. Subject line: Scarecrow Submission: TITLE
About the anthologist: Rhonda Parrish is driven by a desire to do All The Things. She has been the publisher and editor-in-chief of Niteblade Magazine for over five years now (which is like 25 years in internet time) and is the editor of the forthcoming World Weaver Press anthology Fae.
In addition, Rhonda is a writer whose work has been included or is forthcoming in dozens of publications including Tesseracts 17: Speculating Canada from Coast to Coast and Mythic Delirium.