I stupidly said yes to a freelance project, forgetting that I had FogCon to prep for, a novella and a novelette to revise, a novel that at some point I should really return to … so now I’m grinding my teeth in overworked frustration.
“Females of the Species” went out into the world on February 21. It’s in the latest Alphabet Anthology, D is for Dinosaur. The wonderful thing about this series is, other than the theme (which I admit I realllllly stretched here) and the first letter of the title, we’re pretty much free to write what we want. For this one, I wrote about a minor character in my novel-world; it was lovely to come at it from a different angle. It’s about being trapped in a really bad relationship, and the fragility of pride, and the things that live on mysterious islands in the North Sea.
We descended into a damp darkness, our way lit only by the cone of light from the flashlight. At the base of the stairs we moved through an archway and found ourselves in an open space, cool and black. The light picked up stone columns at regular intervals, the skeletal remains of what looked like racks lining one wall—
and at the far end, across from us, a large, barred door of scarred wood, its edges outlined in molten metal.
Robert made a small noise in his throat and rushed forward, forgetting completely about me. The light danced over the wood as he felt along the metal seam, then tried to prise free the bar. After a few minutes he began kicking and punching at the door, flinging himself at it in a futile paroxysm of rage.
Those fists and boots, striking me.
At last he fell to his hands and knees, focusing the flashlight on the bottom edge of the door: the light revealed a thin space between door and floor that Robert pressed his face to. “I’m coming,” he said. “I’m here, I’m coming.”
In other news, I’ll be reading at FogCon on Friday, March 10, I think after the evening break—? There was some last-minute fudging of the time but I think it’s the 8 pm slot. It’s the Broad Universe Rapid Fire Reading – should be fun! And on Sunday I’ll be on a morning panel confessing to all my self-publishing mistakes so you won’t make them.
In other other news, this came on the radio the other day and it was instant nostalgia. I remember dancing to this song in our apartment when I was a little girl, spinning in my mother’s handmade wrap skirts and very ’70s clogs. Bring back that sunny day indeed. Another time, another world.