Friday, February 27, 2009

The London Eye up at EDF

Hey guys! My suspense story "The London Eye" is up today at Every Day Fiction. If you get a chance to hop over there and read it, that would be terrific. Please vote too, five stars if you love it, and four if you really like it and so forth. Also please, leave a comment in the comments section of EDF if you can? Thanks!!

Thursday, February 26, 2009

"Spring Melt" Micro Award Nominee for 2008

My story Spring Melt published by Every Day Fiction in June of 2008 is one of the nominees for the 2nd Annual Micro Award.

From the official Micro Award Website:


“Let x” by Chad Simpson; Napkin Fiction Project, August 15 2008.


“Between the Keys” by Robert Swartwood; elimae, July 2008.

“Cracked Open” by Jane Banning; Birds by My Window, December 9 2008.

“Custard’s Last Stand” by Matt Bell; DOGZPLOT, February 2008.

“Ice Water, Here on Earth” by Damian Dressick; Pittsburgh City Paper, September 25 2008.

“Offerings” by Desmond Warzel; Shroud Magazine #4, Fall 2008.

“Silent Notes” by Jessica Hollander; The First Line, Spring 2008.

“Spring Melt” by Gay Degani; Every Day Fiction, June 6 2008.

“A Wizard of MapQuest” by Alex Wilson; Lady Churchill’s Rosebud Wristlet #23, November 2008.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Lost Memoirs of Jane Austen

HarperCollins Canada is running a promotion to coincide with March Madness-- a tournament which "brings together 64 of the best fiction books on the planet"-- and Syrie James's novel "The Lost Memoirs of Jane Austen" is included.
Syrie has been a friend of mine for too many years to count and if you've got time to vote, please do. If you love Jane Austen, you will also want to order her book. She creates a romance for Jane that may be the genesis of a certain someone's romance with a certain Mr. Darcy.

Every week from now until April 13, you can vote for the books you
think should move forward in the tournament, until there is just one
book crowned as champion.

If you liked ""The Lost Memoirs of Jane Austen," please help it along
the road to victory! It only takes a few seconds to vote. Go to Click on VOTE NOW.

If pressed for time, you can skip straight to the 4th category and
just vote for "Lost Memoirs." Please check back weekly, to vote again as the field narrows. The last time "Lost Memoirs" was in a contest, it lost by 12 votes out
of 10,000.... Thanks so much for your support!

P.S. Look for Syrie's The Secret Diaries of Charlotte Bronte on sale 6/30/09

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

The Pleasures of Lab and Coyote

I've had three dogs in my life. A Doxie when I was young. A Saluki when we bought our first house with a yard. And Cinder, the wise and ancient Labrador that is my constant companion. I've loved them all, but I've made it known to anyone who'll listen, that this is it. I'd like to be dogless for awhile after Cinder, well, after...

My first canine: Taffy. The Dachshund was my dad's choice for an animal. I wanted a puppy who was covered in soft fur all over, someone like Benji or a silky Cocker Spaniel. Needless to say, that wasn't in the cards, but as most dogs have a way of winning you over, Taffotil won me. Eventually she became more my mother's dog than mine--dogs attach to the one who feeds them--but I loved that scurry of hers across the kitchen floor--all that nails-on-linoleum enthusiasm.

Risuli was really Tim's dog. He'd seen a Saluki somewhere and thought, "Now that's a great looking canine." Or something like that. My first impression was that this is a strange breed. Again though the animal won my heart. They have a way of doing that. One of my memories of the regal Risuli is the way he had of sneaking up behind people and just standing there, silent, watching. And when that person, say someone like the meter man, turned around and saw that dog, he beat it out the gate in 10 seconds flat.

Then came Cinder, who started off as Hillary's dog, but eventually became my dog since possession is 9/10ths of the law. Cinder, named by Nick for a road off the 395 on our way to Mammoth was officially Cinder Phoenix Raisin Toyon. She's around, 16 human years old, spending her winter days napping in my old pink sweater, a little blind, a little deaf, and still with the most enthusiastic tail in the continental US.

Rodeo is my daughter's puppy and since she's here, he's here. And he is a kick. He's a Reno shelter dog, a mutt with more coyote in him than Australia shepard, and at less than a year in age, he's got energy that my lab finds, er, more than a little annoying. What I think Cinder resents most is the herding.

It's funny to watch this happen, my 112 year-old-lab giving me a look like, "Mom, where did you come up with this animal?" as she obediently shuffles into her kennel. And Rodeo cocks his head, sniffs her butt, and seems to say something like "I thought you wanted to take a nap since you won't play! I'm only trying to help!!"

Okay enough of that foolishness. If you catch sight of Rodeo as he disappears through a door, your mind flashes on feral-animal-in-thehouse, that slinky lope, that bristly tan fur, but if he's coming at you with that cute little shepard face, ears perked up, blender-strewn splotches of browns and tans, and that grin, well, your heart melts.

He's a good dog. Totally housebroken with just a little too much fondness for sprinkler hoses and the lower branches of camellia bushes. I took him for a walk and found I was much more patient with him than I ever was with Cinder, walking her with a twelve and ten year old in tow, both arguing about who'd get to hold the leash next. Rodeo did well. Listened to my sits, sat up straight, took off on the heel. It was exhilerating, but with all that, I still won't get another dog. At least for a while, although those standard poodles I've been seeing around are pretty cool.

Monday, February 16, 2009

Preditors and Editors Poll Results

Just checked the final results of the 2008 Readers Poll sponsored by the Preditors and Editors site. Pretty exciting. Thank you to everyone who voted for my stories, all three that were nominated finished in the Top Ten.

In the category for general shorts: Stranger on the Porch tied for sixth place and Dani-Girl's Guide to Getting Everything Right tied for 10th.
In the category for science fiction shorts: The Breach tied for sixth place.

Saturday, February 07, 2009

Shameless Kev is Guest Prompter over at EDF

If you want to do a quick 10 minute writing with an egg timer, Kevin Shamel of To Save the Disco fame, is today's GUEST PROMPTER at my Daily Prompt thread over at Every Day Fiction.

I did a couple 10 minute prompts when my daughter came down to visit this week and both of us came up with terrific starts. We used the same prompt, but went with completely different stories. I liked Hillary's idea better than mine. I hope she finds the time to finish a shit draft and revise.

Friday, February 06, 2009

Tattoo Highway 1st Place Quickie

My short short short "Losing Ground" just took first place in the "Picture Worth 500 Words" contest Tattoo Highway runs for each issue. Look for Tattoo Highway, TH/18 probably in March. I'm pretty excited.

Tuesday, February 03, 2009

Me-On Fish Anthology Shortlist!!

This is pretty amazing to me and as my good friend, Sarah, would say, "I'm chuffed." My story has made the (rather longish) shortlist of the Fish Short Story Prize!! This an international contest with over 1500 entries. WOW. Should hear if I make the really shortlist in March. Would make a rather nice birthday present, eh? Another thrill for me is one of the honorary patrons is Roddy Doyle! The Woman who Walked into Doors RODDY DOYLE!