Woo! I sold a short story. It’s called “Sinners, Saints, Dragons, and Haints, in the City Beneath the Still Waters”, and is set in New Orleans during Hurricane Katrina. Sold to the UK print ‘zine, Postscripts. No info yet on publication date, but I’ll keep you posted.
I don’t write short stories often. The problem is that I rarely get discrete ideas. For example, I once started a story about an assassin in a vaguely Egyptian setting who viewed killing as a transcendant religious experience. But that got me thinking about why a religion might consider murder a good thing… which got me thinking about why anyone would need to be murdered… which got me wondering what sort of society would need to develop in order to support this ideology… which got me thinking about how this religion’s cosmology would’ve developed… which got me researching whether the moon of a gas giant could be habitable… which made me wonder whether people living on such a moon might still be able to make the same observations of the heavens that, say, the Egyptians did… which made me wondering whether other people on the same planet would interpret those observations the same way… which made me think about this religious country’s enemies and allies…
The result was two complete novels — unpublished as yet — the outline of a third, and a novella set in the same universe but with different characters… but no short story. The original short story was never finished.
I don’t mind when this happens; I like immersing myself in a novel world more than I like the brief dalliances of a short story. Still, I do wish I’d get short story inspirations more often, because I find them more challenging and exciting to write. I can’t stop myself from writing novels; that’s a compulsion. I do that to stay sane. But forcing myself to work on a more condensed idea, and conveying that idea clearly, takes all my skill. I feel like more of a writer when I do it.
Anyway, in a few months, you’ll be able to read this one. =) Yay!