Stephanie Burgis
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I just got a same-day (heck, less than 6 hours) acceptance from the new magazine GrendelSong for my short story "Ivy and Thorn". Hurray! It'll be published in the first issue of the magazine, on September 22nd, along with stories by Samantha Henderson, Eugie Foster, Kathy Sedia, and other cool people. I am so psyched!

"Ivy and Thorn" is one of those story ideas that lurked in my head for years before I finally wrote it down, and it went through many transformations before I finally figured out how to get it right. I knew the relationship at the core of the story from the very beginning, but when I first imagined the story, I planned for it to be a novella set in 17th-century Bavaria. Then, as a grad student in Pittsburgh, I decided to make it a near-future fantasy novel set in Pittsburgh. I even wrote a few drafts of the opening chapter, but none of them felt right. Finally, finally, I figured it out. Now it's what it was always supposed to be, an Elizabethan fantasy short story set in Northern England, a place where nature still felt wild and dangerous in the 16th century, despite the highly stylized court culture. It's about love that hurts, magic that can ruin everything, and the forgiveness that comes when you learn how to be strong. I'm so happy it's going to be published!

There is much rejoicing in our house. I even rose from my couch to do a minor celebratory dance. Now I'm considering what to make Patrick bring me as a celebration. chocolate frothed by the espresso machine? Ice cream? Rice Krispies? So many choices...

In another minor victory, I woke up this morning not feeling woozy, for the first time in weeks, and I haven't had a fever for over 48 hours. Woohoo!

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