Parch – Day 5

One submission today.

Story 1.

Over the sea the memory of my children is as a dream, fled.

Tell me that I am doing the right thing.

I am building a ship, with my bare hands.

This has taken, so far, over two years. It is not complete yet. I make it of metal, and oak.

I am afraid that it will not be done in time, for, like Noah, I have a presumption, a prognostication, a little inkling . . .

Something is coming home to roost.

Some memory becomes entangled Continue reading

Parch – Day 4

I have one new submission for today.

Story 1.

Catastrophe struck on day 14,611 of Koan’s occupation–a significant number because it equated to day one of his retirement and hence the first morning when he’d woken up in legal possession of the flat. It should have been a breakfast of sumptuous liberation. Instead, the roof emptied in and enough water cascaded down to leave Koan wallowing knee-deep and bewildered. He blinked as the T-Mat booth fizzled and shorted out, then thought belatedly to jump up onto his fold-away bed. Water frothed and swirled all around him, swallowing up every piece of low-lying furniture except for Koan’s cast iron bathtub–a retirement present–which now had the distinction of Continue reading

Parch – Day 3

It’s actually the fourth day, but I didn’t receive any subs for a day, which gave me a bit of a break. Batteries recharged, here we go with three submissions today.

Story 1.

This is a rewrite of a prior story. That it arrived barely a day after I asked for fairly extensive changes is a red flag.

Professor Cornelius stroked the crop of the bright golden bird perched on his arm, admiring the shine of the one hundred degree sunlight on its feathers. He heard fast hoof beats and through the shimmering air he saw four men approaching. He put the bird back in the cage and set it inside his Arapaho Miracle Cure wagon. Continue reading

Parch – Day 2

Two new submissions yesterday. Here’s my take on them.

Story 1

“Excuse me; did your friend just go into the bathroom?”

“Yes,” he just stepped in,” Madeline said glancing at the man while fidgeting with the cup on the table. Her coffee was getting cold, so was her sandwich steak, and Bill had already been in the bathroom for fifteen minutes but it was none of some disheveled strangers business how long Bill had been pissing.

They turned their heads in the direction of a waitress who was fast approaching. The paneled walls of the old diner seemed to sag even more that evening. Headlights of a car Continue reading

Parch – Day 1

This year, I’m trying to keep up with submissions on a day to day basis. This will result in less feedback, but a much quicker turnaround and should keep me from bogging down after the submission deadline. Hopefully it gives you wonderful writers a chance to submit more work during the submission period as well.

This morning I’m reading two submissions that arrived yesterday. I’m going to post story openings in an attempt to discuss one of the more important aspects of a submission. How do you grab a jaded editor’s eye, and hold it long enough to make him care?

Story 1

This body cannot last for long.

And if I Continue reading

Triangulation: Parch Anthology Open for Submissions

I’m happy to announce that submissions are now open for the Triangulation: Parch anthology. Please see the new web site for full details.

I will be responding to submissions very quickly this year, but with somewhat less feedback. The goal is to create an anthology between 50,000-60,000 words and have it available for the 2014 Confluence SF Convention in Pittsburgh (July 25-27).

For those of you awaiting word on the Steel Cities anthology from last year, rest assured we are moving forward with that project too. It will also be available for the convention, and hopefully before. If you still have a story under consideration, you should hear from me soon. I also intend to Continue reading

‘Tis More Blessed Week 3

And this week’s winner is…. Julie Flanders.

Tis More Blessed Friday Raffle‘Tis More Blessed continues today with over 40 authors participating! Every Friday in December I will be raffling off a book to one lucky winner. To enter, drop a comment below. I will select a winner at random.

Then, visit other authors to see what’s they have to offer. This week, they are:

Madeline Mora-Summonte   Yolanda Renee   Gay Degani

M.K. Theodoratus   KV Taylor   Gini Koch   Sherry Ellis   Martin Willoughby

E. Catherine Tobler   Anne E. Johnson   Tyrean Martinson   Continue reading

It’s Alive!

I owe a huge apology to you wonderful Steel Cities contributors. There is no excuse for my lack of communication these past few months, and I’m sorry to keep everyone waiting.

So, what happened? Normally, we release the anthology at the annual Confluence SF Convention in July in Pittsburgh. I gear up for that process in May and June, which makes those months pretty unbearable in terms of my own writing and day-to-day life. When the convention had to be cancelled this year, my first concern was that we might have to cancel Steel Cities too. For a time, I wavered between poles on this issue. On the one hand, the sales generated at Continue reading

October Was Morning After Month – Part 24

Our final story this year is “The Third Portal” by DeAnna Knippling. Ever since she had her daughter (now ten), she’s been hearing that the teenage years Will Be Torture and her daughter will suddenly become a horrible stranger, which she somehow doubts. She’s also been hearing all kinds of political propaganda that strips complex situations of all subtlety and reduces them to black and white, which she also doubts. She lives in Colorado Springs with her magnificent husband and daughter as well as a foul-tempered, dragonish cat while she writes, learns to play mandolin, and does freelance writing, editing, and formatting work. See her personal website at and her business website Continue reading