I don’t usually write these posts but thought I would. Maybe it’s to escape from other end-of-year work, such as finalizing decisions (always hard!) for The Food Of My People, the speculative fiction anthology Candas Jane Dorsey and I are editing for Exile, or working on applications for funding.
In 2017 I published a near-future cli-apocalypse YA thing with feminist and educational press Inanna. It’s called Mountain and takes place at a gathering on Mount Shasta in Northern California, where seventeen-year-old Camden learns to make her own way after being abandoned by her mother. It’s eligible for SF Awards including, perhaps, the Tiptree, as Camden’s mom Laureen is a hardware geek, and female-led hardware geekery does figure in the novella. It’s also eligible for YA awards including genre YA awards, as it’s part of Inanna’s new Young Feminists line. It’s available on Overdrive and as an Ebook and paperback from the publisher and online retailers.
It was endorsed by Candas Jane Dorsey and by Governor General’s Award winning artist and writer Heather Spears. You can find out more about what Heather said here.
Things I loved by other people:
I have’t read Leanne Betasamosake Simpson’s This Accident of Being Lost yet as it’s just arrived in my Overdrive, but please bear with me. If I read the book before I finish this post the post might never happen, as today is the day I have time for it. I endorsed one of Leanne’s previous books, the collection Islands of Decolonial Love. Her new book was shortlisted for the prestigious Canadian Writers’ Trust award, which comes with a 20K prize. I mention this book because some of the stories are science fiction. Simpson doesn’t publish much in the SF community. She is mainly known as a writer on indigenous issues in Canada, but did have a reprint from Islands in Lightspeed not too long ago. Her work is smart and deft and should be better known in the SF and F community.
Speaking of indigenous Canadian authors, Eden Robinson’s Son of A Trickster is, to my mind, a must-read. It was shortlisted for the Giller Prize, another major Canadian literary prize. It’s being marketed as adult mainstream, but really it’s speculative YA. It’s conflation of drug hallucinations and spirit-world experiences is riveting and original. I stayed up till 5 am reading it, a thing which hardly ever happens now. Its sheer inventiveness and its lovable, troubled teen characters hit the mark.
I did publish six short stories this year but they were all reprints. Three were placed in Great Jones Street: “The Waterman”, “Python” and “Late for Dinner”. The “Waterman” and “Python” are my most often reprinted pieces, each having appeared in Canada, the US and the UK, in publications including the Tesseracts anthology series, Chris Reed’s Back Brain Recluse, Jeff VanderMeer’s Album Zutique, Lightspeed and others. “The Waterman” was shortlisted for the Aurora Award. “Python” won the Rose Secrest short fiction award, a US small press award. “Late for Dinner” first appeared in Strange Horizons and is archived there. It was nominated for the Pushcart Prize. Three pieces of flash fiction were excerpted from Motion Sickness for ELQ, the Exile Literary Quarterly. The inclusion was titled “Swallowing is Always Louder in the Dark”. Motion Sickness was published by Inanna, Toronto’s feminist and educational publisher, and stunningly illustrated by trans artist SK Dyment. It was longlisted for the ReLit Award.