Because of the business of the beginning of the school year and all the work of getting A Dreadful Fairy Book ready to go to press, this announcement is shamefully late, but nonetheless I’m delighted to announce that one of my stories has been recorded as a podcast by an amazing array of actors and is available exclusively and for free on the Ghosts on Drugs website!
A story that had been percolating for a long time and informed/partly inspired by the must-see documentary 30 Seconds Away: Breaking the Cycle, Hy Bender, co-editor of the anthology Ghosts on Drugs and the guy who made this fantastic recording happen, describes it as “a beautiful tale about ghosts of the past, the ghost-like lives of the homeless, and the power of love and gods.” And while I’m proud of all the short stories I’ve written, this one is probably my best. As my friend Andy Bender told me, “This one’s something special.”
Anyway, until Ghosts on Drugs sees print, the story will only be available here, which is just fine given the amazing work of all the actors involved. Grace Rex’s pain and vulnerability as “the Kid” are palpable; Dana Watkin’s versatility, stunning; Caroline Cotter’s strength and concern, spot on; and PJ Sosko as the narrator/main character is just perfect! It almost feels like he owns that story now instead of me. Do yourself a favor and give it a listen first chance you get!
The good folks at Story Monsters Ink were kind enough to include a really fun interview with Quentin Q. Quacksworth (well, as fun as anything can be with that guy) in their September issue, which is out now. They are awesome! (Even if Quacksworth isn’t.)
Okay, I’m not sure if this really counts as a sneak peak since this ad appeared in Publishers Weekly, but here it is:
And while I’m not currently at liberty to share any of the interior art that the wonderfully talented Adam Horsepool has done for A Dreadful Fairy Book, I can tell you it’s terrific and the book is going to look like a million bucks. (Cover price, however, is significantly lower than that.)
“Galatea’s Lament,” a new take on the myth of Pygmalion and Galatea written from the perspective of Galatea, and “A Study in Winter,” inspired by the view from my classroom window after a big snowstorm, are in the July 2018 edition of Scarlet Leaf Review. It’s free, so I don’t know why you wouldn’t click the link on the “Publications” page and read them (and a lot of other great poetry as well).
On the Dreadful Fairy front, good Lord, so much going on! Recently read through first look copy for ARCs, wrote up promo copy about the book and myself (I don’t know about you but I’m hearing an awful lot about this Jon Etter guy lately, and I’m getting pretty darn sick of him!), still plugging away at the second Dreadful Fairy Book (almost done!), and have had the pleasure of seeing the wonderful artwork done for the book by the amazing Adam Horsepool. Just typing out everything that’s going on is exhausting. Anyway, very cool stuff all leading up to the November 6th release of A Dreadful Fairy Book, now available for pre-order at your local independent bookstore, Barnes & Noble, and Amazon
A while back I announced that A Dreadful Fairy Book, the first book in my three-book series Those Dreadful Fairy Books, was scheduled for a June 2019 release. Well, the amazing people at Amberjack Publishing are so excited about the book that they have moved up publication to November 6th, 2018! So the realization of my childhood dream is now going to happen eight months earlier, and I couldn’t be more excited! That’s why I’m overusing exclamation points! Just try to stop me! You can’t!
Sorry for the extended radio silence but I’ve been hard at work revising a YA Noir Murder Mystery that my agent will be shopping around soon and writing the second book in my series for Amberjack Publishing, Those Dreadful Fairy Books, which I’m hoping to have done by June or July so that I can tackle edits on The Dreadful Fairy Book and get cracking on book three of the series. Plus I’ve been putzing around and wasting some of my time teaching and raising my children and such. So it’s a busy little life I’ve got going here and unfortunately posting on the ol’ website hasn’t been–nor will it be–my top priority. But here’s an update! Woo!
Bards & Sages Quarterly, who previously published a couple of my stories in their anthology The Great Tome of Forgotten Relics and Artifacts, have been kind enough to publish another one of my stories in their latest issue: “Window Rattlin’.” The story was inspired by my son’s fear of the way one of the windows in his room would rattle when it was windy out. Over time, it kind of took on a life of its own in his imagination and became “Window Rattlin’,” a name my wife and I also used to refer to the window/the bogey that had taken up residence in my son’s brain. I do need to admit that while I was usually pretty understanding, there were times, especially in the middle of the night, when I was a little less understanding and patient than I could/should have been, so the unsympathetic father (who is much less sympathetic than I was/am) and what happens to him in the story is to some degree or other an admission of guilt, an act of penance, some form of transference or sublimation, or all of the above. Feel free to read it and psychoanalyze to your heart’s content.
As always, thanks for reading and for visiting the website!
I’m excited to report that earlier this week I signed a three-book deal (THREE BOOKS!) with Amberjack Publishing, who are currently putting out some of the coolest books for kids, teens, and adults right now! The middle grade comedy/fantasy series is entitled Those Dreadful Fairy Books, with the first one, A Dreadful Fairy Book, due out in June of 2019 with each sequel due out June 2020 and June 2021.
A Dreadful Fairy Book focuses on Shade, a grumpy, bookish sprite who would rather spend her time inside reading than flying, playing acorn-toss, or engaging in Grand Projects like her fellow sprites of Pleasant Hollow. When her house burns down, she reluctantly goes on a quest to find a possibly mythic library. Along the way, she meets and/or teams up with a variety of misfit fairies, including a dandy troll who refuses to live under bridges, a questing beast who doesn’t like to be chased, a card-sharping brownie who doesn’t do housework, and a mute, kleptomaniacal pixie. If readers have half as much fun reading it as I did writing it…well, that might lead to some negative reviews and poor sales, now that I think of it. Let’s just say that I had a blast writing it, and I can’t wait for people to have the chance to enjoy it themselves.
I also need to take a moment to thank my agent, the amazing Adria Goetz, for getting my book in the hands of editors, and the delightful Dayna Anderson and Kayla Church at Amberjack for making my childhood dream of having a book written by me sitting on shelves in libraries a reality. Most of all, I need to thank my wonderful wife for encouraging me in all of my writings in general and specifically telling me “You should work on the fairy book next” and my kids for listening to me read it and telling me that the funny bits were actually funny.
Stay tuned here and to my Facebook and Twitter accounts for updates! Thanks!
Tales of the Once and Future King, an all-ages anthology of stories about/inspired by the stories of Arthur and the Knights of the Round Table, will be available in eBook/Kindle format this Friday, September 30th (print version to come) and includes a short comedy/fantasy I wrote: “Somebody’s Favorite Knight.” Big thanks to editor/anthologist Anthony Marchetta for inviting me to the party.
I’m happy to report that Fighting Monkey Press’s anthology Uncommon Lands, edited by the incomparable Jessica West, is now available in both print and ebook formats and includes my short magical realism romance “Anderson’s Necessaries.” Jess has really put together a fantastic collection of stories, and I’m honored to be included.
I’d also like to thank Kay in Scotland for the lovely note about the story. I’m so glad you enjoyed it and hope that it was worthy of your chocolate getting melty while reading it.