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Cheese Your Make!
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Good news this morning: My story "Grander than the Sea" is going to be published this December in the Solaris Book of New Fantasy, the companion volume to the Solaris Book of New Science Fiction anthology (which features heaps of good stuff, including a collab between Friends of Tropism Greg van Eekhout and Jay Lake). The story is actually about Marla Mason, the ass-kicking sorceress who holds center stage in my new urban fantasy series. The events of "Grander than the Sea" take place between book 1, Blood Engines, and book 2, Poison Sleep. The anthology pays in pounds, too. Mmm, weak dollar.

I'm glad it comes out in December. My novel will have been out for a few weeks by then, so maybe readers will eagerly run out and buy it after reading the story. I hope.


Happy St. Valentine's day, when we celebrate a martyred Roman saint who restored his prison guard's daughter's sight and hearing before getting his own head cut off (according to one legend, anyway -- actually nobody knows what St. Valentine did or how he was martyred for sure). We also celebrate romantic love and send love letters, because Chaucer told us that was the done thing on this day: "For this was on seynt Volantynys day / Whan euery bryd comyth there to chese his make." Chaucer implied this was an old and venerable tradition, when in fact he just made it up on the spot. But that's cool. It's as good a beginning as most holidays have, honestly. Hallmark just picked up where Chaucer left off and figured out a way to make money off it! (I used to believe the old story that St. Valentine's day was made into a biggish holiday in order to distract pagans from celebrating Lupercalia, but wikipedia tells me some historian made that story up in the 18th century and it's not actually true. Ah, well.)

Maybe the foregoing makes me sound cynical, but I'm actually a sappy romantic at heart, and any excuse to eat chocolate and make out and read love poems is fine by me. I have some nice plans for Heather tonight, but I'll tell y'all about them later, so the surprise isn't spoiled for her.

(Oh, and happy Singles Awareness Day, too, if you're one of those who observes that alternative...)


From an e-mail I just sent to Heather:

Ah, Oakland. Sometimes it hardly feels like the liberal enlightened Bay Area at all. I was at the grocery store, and they'd set up a horrible tent city in the parking lot, with mylar balloons, stuffed Winnie the Poohs, boxes of cheap chocolate, etc. A woman with a megaphone was exhorting the populace to buy gifts for their wives "or else your dinner won't be cooked right" and their men ("you know he like a good backrub and a hot dinner too") and their mothers ("boyfriends and girlfriends come and go but you got the same mama forever"). I felt like saying, "Ooh, my boyfriend Juan just loves these scented candles, especially when I dribble the hot wax on his pierced nipples. I'll take a dozen!"

Have a good one y'all.

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