fiction, news

Story published: ‘Ohotsuku-kai’

Way back in 2013, I wrote the following in a post on this very blog:

Well, I’ve just received final confirmation that the lovely folks at Stupefying Stories have indeed accepted my story “Ohōtsuku-Kai”, and that it will very likely be available for your reading pleasure sometime in the future.

Well, folks, the future is now! Fast forward to 2018 and Stupefying Stories #22 is now live and available for purchase on the Kindle for the low, low price of $2.99 (free for Kindle Unlimited subscribers). Go get you one! Or if you prefer, you can get the dead-tree version as well!

https://nmwhitley.files.wordpress.com/2018/12/10ebc-stupefyingstories22.jpg

A bit of a time capsule, this one. “Ohōtsuku-Kai” was completed sometime in 2011. It was the third or fourth short story I wrote after deciding it would be a good idea to spend my free time writing short stories (note that this was back when I had way more free time.) Revisiting it now with the lucid 20/20 of hindsight, its flaws are (to me) glaringly apparent; I can only hope its charms are equally apparent to readers.

Upon rereading, I will says it’s a surprisingly ‘pulpy’ affair, more so than anything I’ve written in the intervening years. The promotional copy for this issue describes it like so:

“a terrific next-century science fiction tale set in a world in which the United States is still recovering from the effects of the Second Civil War, the Japanese, Koreans, and Russians are all jostling for position in the Chinese shadow, and someone has discovered a new power source that seems too good to be true.”

I’d like to thank editor Bruce Bethke for picking my little story out of the slush and flinging it out into the world. Working with Bruce on the copy edits was a pleasure; highly recommend, would copy-edit again. 5/5

So basically if you like stories about modern-day indentured servitude, and pirates, and aliens, you know what to do!

 

 

 

 

 

 

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fiction, news

2014 in review

Hello there, and welcome to what’s become one of the cherished classics of blogging genre writers, the thinly-veiled “hey, go nominate me for a Hugo” post. Make of it what you will.

Last year I completed six new short stories, two of which are currently on submission. Not the most prolific output. Or maybe it is. I don’t know, leave me alone.

Of those six stories, exactly one has been published: “Chatarra”, Ideomancer Speculative Fiction 13.3 (Sept., 2014).

A few months earlier (June to be exact), another story of mine “Hacking ‘Wilkes-Barre PA, July 2001′” appeared in the anthology Master Minds (Third Flatiron Publishing).

Sooo, on the off-chance that anyone out there reading this is or was a voting member of the 2014, 2015, or 2016 Worldcons by the end of the day (Pacific Time/GMT -8) on January 31, 2015–it’s a longshot, I know–why not take a minute and nominate one or both of the above-mentioned stories for a Hugo Award? Honestly, what could it hurt? Huh?

Not that I actually expect anyone to do so. Really it’s just another opportunity for me to post links to these two humble li’l pieces of genre fiction, in hopes that you might ‘Like’, comment, or even ‘purchase’ and publish a favorable review of either. So, y’know, you’ve got options.

Stay tuned for more in 2015.

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fiction, news

Wow, that was quick: “Chatarra” now up at Ideomancer

What better way to return from a long and pleasant summer vacation than with an announcement like this:

My short story “Chatarra” has just been published over at Ideomancer. Go check it out, it’s me in a ‘sombre’ mode.

Kind of a funny story about this one getting accepted, I’ll have to tell you about it sometime.

In the meantime, thanks to Leah and everyone else at Ideomancer. Cheers!

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fiction

FEAR OF THE FUTURE

Here is a short piece dedicated to the end of the world.

FEAR OF THE FUTURE

Interviewer    What exactly is your phobia, Carlton?

Carlton          Well the medical name is futurophobia.

Interviewer    And what does that mean exactly?

Carlton          It means I’m afraid of the future.

Interviewer    The future?

Carlton          Yes.

Interviewer    How long have you had this phobia?

Carlton          Since I was a child.

Interviewer    And how did it start?

Carlton          When I was five or six years old, I remember going to a friend’s house and I saw the future on the stairs. And the future was looking at me, well staring at me. I went to touch it, and it bit me. And since then I’ve always been afraid of the future.

Interviewer    What happens if you see the future?

Carlton          Well, I start to feel very nervous, my hearts beats quickly. And I have to go away very quickly from where the future is. For example, if I see the future in the street, I always cross to the other side.

Interviewer    What do you do?

Carlton          I’m a doctor.

Interviewer    Is your phobia a problem for you in your work?

Carlton          Well, sometimes. On the rare occasion that I go to someone’s house on a housecall and they have a future, I have to ask the people to put it in another room. I can’t be in the same room as the future.

Interviewer    Have you ever had any treatment for your phobia?

Carlton          Yes, I’ve just started going to a therapist. I’ve had three sessions.

Interviewer    How’s it going?

Carlton          Well, now I can look at a photo of the future without feeling nervous or afraid. And I can touch a toy future. The next step will be to be in a room with the real future.

Interviewer    Do you think you will ever lose your phobia of the futures?

Carlton          I hope so. I’m optimistic. Who knows, maybe one day I’ll be able to live in the future.

 

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