I'm still writing poetry. It's been cathartic for me to make political art for its own sake and publish it to my blog. Here's another piece.
You cannot always be drowning.
You cannot sink forever in a bottomless sea.
Brine fills the lungs, but these are finite vessels,
and the body cannot endure that awful fullness.
It spasms, pinches the larynx shut, blackens the mind.
You do not want to die.
Even the small fish of the deep make plans,
zipping past your body toward a story you cannot fathom,
while the whales who pursue them sing in tongues -
too profound for any human understanding.
Fight the flailing of your limbs.
Fight the clenching of your throat.
Fight the darkness at the edges of your sight.
I've been writing this poem since Remembrance Day. I'm still so conflicted about what has happened, what is happening now in the States. I think this piece reflects that. Make of it what you will.
By then, her knuckles were thick and gnarled,
but the needle piercing her quilt scraps -
was sure as an old woman's prayer.
"Hallelujah, hallelujah, hallelujah," she would intone -
over the television, as if President Jimmy Carter -
spoke with the voice of Almighty God.
"Never voted Republican once in my life."
Neither have I. It wasn't enough.
I should be there now.
Release day is tomorrow, and this is my last post about the kind things other writers and editors have said of The Longest Road in the Universe: A Collection of Fantastical Tales. This one is from Nebula Award and Shirley Jackson Award finalist Mike Allen:
I'm reading a science fiction trilogy right now which has begun to annoy me. It has a great plot and an interesting protagonist, but the story itself is told via a litany of social justice issues. It's as if the author had a list while she was writing and went down it, item by item, until she had thoroughly covered them all. I could play a drinking game to this series - "Drink a shot every time the author beats you over the head with her ideology," - but I'd end up in the hospital with alcohol poisoning.
Why are pre-orders important to writers?
Because on release day, they're all processed at once as if they were placed on that day, which can offer a nice boost in sales ranking, especially on Amazon. This boost can increase the book's visibility to other new readers, which can further increase sales.
So if you're planning on buying the The Longest Road in the Universe anyway, would you consider pre-ordering it? Thanks!
Here's where you can do that:
The print edition is still in process, but as soon as it's available for pre-order, I'll post the link here.
In other news, I'm still working on those review copies, but they'll be in your inboxes soon, reviewers.
I've been posting these to social media, but I thought I ought to be sharing them on my blog as well. So here's the third of five posts about the kind things my fellow authors have said of The Longest Road in the Universe. This one comes from Alex Bledsoe, who writes:
This collection of short stories has a rich texture and a profound appreciation for human courage and decency, even when its characters aren't entirely human. From avenging sentient bombs to former slaves struggling to remember their ancestors' humanity, it's a vivid, epic and touching journey.--Alex Bledsoe, author of The Hum and the Shiver
A is for Apocalypse, which contains my WSFA-shortlisted story "N is for Nanomachine" is going to be a part of the 'Buy Two Get One Free' Halloween sale at Kobo between October 13th and October 18th. So if you're up for a great set of scary reads that includes several varieties of apocalypse, I hope you'll check it out!
On the 14th of September in 1607, Neill of Tír Eóghain, Rory Ó Donnell of Tír Chonaill and about ninety followers left Ireland for mainland Europe after several years of crushing defeat at the hands of the English. In the wake of their departure, the old Gaelic world began to collapse, and with it, the system of patronage that kept a hereditary class of Gaelic poets housed and fed. In the generation after this Flight of the Earls, the complex meters of Gaelic poetry gave way to freer, more melancholy verse as poets no longer had stable homes from which to compose. In time, this unique contribution to the world's literary craft was abandoned by its caretakers, since they simply did not have the support they needed to continue writing in the way they once had.