I had two stories appear in markets in 2021.
First up, in the spring, my super-short story “The Atlas” appeared in Cloud Lake, Volume Two. “The Atlas” is 325 words long, and features an erased nation, a hunting knife, and a bottle of absinthe, among other delights.
Jennifer said her great-to-the-nth-grandmother came from Untille. The country, erased in some primeval war, existed now only in folklore. On the atlas page it bordered Iraq, Uqbar, Syria.—“The Atlas”
And then, in the fall, my story “Summertime in the Void” appeared in Alternate Plains (ie, the sequel to Parallel Prairies). It’s got varicoloured pills, theft, confessions, road trips, ghosts, and an answer to “What happens if the Rapture (or the Singularity) doesn’t want you?” (And yes, if you’re wondering, I absolutely stole the title from the I Mother Earth song.)
The upside-down sun glared down on him from a cloudless blue sky. He’d tried explaining once to a friend what the sun looked like when it was upside-down. It hadn’t gone well. The best he’d managed to come up with was “You’ll know it when you see it.”—“Summertime in the Void”
See you in 2022!
Out now on the finer Internets everywhere: my (very) short story “The Atlas”, which features an atlas, a bottle of absinthe, and a hunting knife, published in Volume 2 of Cloud Lake Literary.
Forthcoming in October 2021: Alternate Plains (available for pre-order now!), featuring my story “Summertime in the Void”, which is one answer to the question “What if the Singularity didn’t want you?” (Canny CanCon types might wonder if I lifted the title from an I Mother Earth song. The answer is “Absolutely.”)
(It’s been a long time since I had two publications in the same calendar year. I think the last time was ’04, when On Spec published “Resurrection Radio” and I won the Manitoba Short Fiction contest with “A Map to the End of the World”.)
Today is the release date for Cloud Lake Literary, Volume 2, which contains my very short story “The Atlas”, which features an atlas with at least one extra country, a bottle of absinthe, and a hunting knife.
I just checked my stats on The Submissions Grinder, and this one sold to the 18th market I submitted it to. 17 markets said, gently or bluntly, “Thanks but no” before this one found a home.
I guess the lesson is, Keep trying. Someone out there wants your story.
Writers: If you’re not using The Submissions Grinder, you owe it to yourself to at least look into it. It’s a market list for fiction and poetry, and it’s a submissions tracker, and it’s free. It’ll let you import your data from Duotrope (if you were using Duotrope before, it’s kind of like a less-polished Duotrope).
Cloud Lake Volume 2 is available for purchase from Cloud Lake’s site. For
$10.00 $7.50 (Canadian), you get fiction, non-fiction, children’s stories, poetry, and art from 16 Canadian creative types.
Check it out!
Header image by Andrew Neel on Unsplash.