Valentine’s Day is over, St. Patrick’s day is still weeks away, and unless you’re in Rio or New Orleans (or the liquor store by my house, which was decorated very festively for the occasion), you probably don’t have a whole lot going on for Mardi Gras — let’s face it, there’s something of a celebratory slump this time of year. Hell, my vacation ends on Wednesday, a month of flying all-nighters begins, and that’s certainly nothing to jump up and down about.
But take heart — don’t repurpose those party hats just yet: Read an Ebook Week on Smashwords starts today, ushering in an entire week of big savings at “the world’s largest distributor of indie ebooks.” My novels, Kiss Me, Straight and Crazy Like Fox have RSVP’d to the party, and will be on sale for 75% OFF all week long (March 2-8). And did you know: you don’t have to have a Kindle or a Nook to read Ebooks — you can get them in formats that you can read on your regular old computer or even on your phone! (Smashwords will have to help you with that, though — I only use my phone these days for getting my ass kicked by an old high school crush at Words with Friends.) (He’s 42 — not so old…)
I have more Ebooks coming at you soon: a short erotic romance-slash-mash note from me to the Vancouver Airport called You Again? comes out in April, and I’m ecstatically pleased to announce the release of my novel-length Doofus and the Drag Queen romance Love Has Reasons in June. Don’t fret, there will be loads more info about these two items, especially as cover art becomes available, but in the meantime, if you have some catch-up to do on my catalogue (or just want to load up your E-Reader with independent authors), save save save! at Smashwords this week. Then pour yourself a cup of coffee or a glass of wine, curl up in your fave reading nook with your E-Reader and your elaborate feathered headdress, and party on!
OK, so, in the interest of biting the bullet and taking the whole “challenge” concept from my last post way too seriously, I have decided to go ahead and post my “Horror Story” for the Short Story Challenge in the competition critique forum. It seems like a very participatory group, which is different from any contest I’ve entered before, and I was all Big Talker Betty Crocker about having nothing to fear from feedback on this story, which is a lot easier to say when you keep the story secret and don’t give anybody the chance. So here goes.
- My Assigned Genre: Horror
- My Assigned Subject: A Genetically Modified Organism (GMO)
- My Assigned Character: A Prisoner
- Max word count: 2,500
They’re looking for “interesting and inventive” stories, and I’m gunning for big points in creative interpretation of genre and theme. With that in mind, please enjoy “More Meat, More Quickly.” And if reading it horrifies you, by all means say so — this is probably the only time I’ll take that as a compliment. Continue reading
Since The Man from PigPerfect mysteriously turned up on her front porch, Janessa Chang-Showalter has had to shoot her dog, watch someone else shoot her hormone-crazed husband, and now she’s scared to death of the baby she’s being forced to deliver. She’s beginning to wonder if running off with Andrew to his Nebraska hometown was such a hot idea after all.
I love a good writing exercise. Timed exercises; photo prompts; ones that use structure, like 100 words or haikus — I like the way they get things flowing, and I love to see the way a gang of writers can take the same prompt and take it in a hundred different directions. So when a friend of mine told me about NYC Midnight’s Short Story Challenge, I was all in. There’s a time element (8 days, in Round One, to write a story from scratch), a word limit (2,500), and prompts relating to genre, subject, and character — a competition seemingly designed just for me! I figured as long as I didn’t get Horror for my genre, I had this on lock.
The night before the Round One assignments were revealed, I actively fretted: I hope I don’t get Horror as my genre for the Short Story Challenge. And the Universe, as is occasionally her wont, picked up on two key phrases — namely “Horror” and “the Short Story Challenge” — and lined ‘em right up for me in the nick of time. By fretting about it, I had more or less asked for it, and I sure did get it. Continue reading
Posted in Life, Stuff I Write, Writing
Tagged Amanda Summerbell, challenges, Facts of Life, Horror, NYC Midnight, Raul's empanadas, Scooby Doo, short stories, Short Story Challenge 2014
There are few things I love as much as I love The Golden Girls, which is why I love these Valentines! I can’t take credit for whipping them up (you know I would if I could), but I’m happy to post them here for the third year in a row for you to Snip and Send (or, well, hand deliver — today is the 14th.).
Yeah, it’s a Hallmark holiday, but what the hell? I figure any excuse to celebrate love — be it for your partner, your smoldering secret crush, or priceless television comedy — is something you might as well seize.
At the end of the summer of 2012, a story of mine was included in EM Lynley’s Olympic-themed anthology Going for Gold. The collection of eight stories about gay Olympians (and their boyfriends, natch) was something of a Reader Favorite, and has seen renewed interest during the ramp-up to the Games of the Twenty-Second Winter Olympiad in Sochi, which arguably has a higher profile in the Queer community than Games past, due to the visibility and virulence of recent anti-gay laws passed in their host country. Hell, I’m paying attention, and Michael Phelps doesn’t even ice skate. Specifically, Russia has outlawed “gay propaganda,” which includes not only art and literature but any kind of public or private speech that seeks to legitimize gay people or equalize their families with any that hew to the more traditional model, in order to Protect the Children from being exposed to these notions.
And frankly, I kind of dig being a part of a project that links Gay and Olympics quite so explicitly at this moment in time. The International Olympic Committee is not exactly famous for its explicit support of LGBTQ equality. Yes, we’ve had the Laff-A-Lympics, and the Pig Olympics, and 2014 has already crowned the winner of the Selfie Olympics, but if you travel to Cleveland this summer, you will be invited to enjoy the ninth quadrennial Gay Games, so called because weeks before the First-Ever in 1982, the IOC (and the USOC) sued to block the use of the word “Olympics” in conjunction with this particular sporting event. More recently, a member of the IOC from Italy called the United States’ inclusion of three gay athletes in its official delegation to Sochi “absurd.” From where I’m sitting, it takes a certain amount of guts to roll up in a country that has recently chosen not only to pass, but in some cases to harshly enforce, laws against being visibly gay — you know, lest it harm The Children to behold you — and then go on and be gay on what will, for two weeks, be the most visible stage in the world, but I don’t speak it — maybe that’s what “absurd” means in Italian. Continue reading
Posted in Pride, Stuff I Write
Tagged Billie Jean King, Brian Boitano, Caitlin Cahow, EM Lynley, Embrace your Awesomeness, fear, gay Olympians, gay propaganda, Going for Gold, LGBTQ, Michael Phelps, Olympics, power, Sochi, Sochi 2014, The Gay Agenda, Winter Olympics, Won't Somebody Think of the Children?