Saturday, July 1, 2017

Great Things I've Been Reading, June 2017 Edition

Nebulas: Done!

4th Street Fantasy: Done!

College Reunion: Done!

The blitz of Spring turning into Summer is almost over. I just have one convention left - Readercon, ironically the only place I won't be doing panels or hosting. As much as I'm looking forward to seeing everyone, I'm equally anticipating all the sleep I get to catch up on afterward. Plus Spoonbenders and Little Witch Academia are calling my name.

Over June, I read some brilliant short fiction and rattling non-fiction. It's a great way to keep the mind sharp in a bunch of airports. As always, everything linked here is free to read in full. Simply click the link in the title of each piece and away you'll go.


"Small Changes Over Long Periods in Time" by K.M. Szpara at Uncanny Magazine
-"My attacker holds me like he did on the dance floor" is one of those lines that tightens your guts. Immediately after learning that our narrator was once attacked and turned into a vampire in an alley, we learn it was by their date. The story uses the tropes of vampire fiction to take us through the criminally less-exposed trans experience, including our narrator getting socked by the politics of the Federal Vampire Commission for having an "atypical body." It all builds up to an absolutely beautiful final exchange with their attacker, in which metaphor and power structures get grabbed by the neck.

"The Existentialist Men" by Gwendolyn Clare at Diabolical Plots
-Come for the play on comic book titles, stay for a sweet profiles of people with odd powers (or equally odd absences of powers). Clare swiftly gives you a sense of the community between the people, even if their powers made it difficult for them to always coexist. My favorite is the shortest entry: "Julie could disappear, but only once. We all miss Julie."

"Water Like Air" by Lora Gray at Flash Fiction Online
-Tom Hatcher doesn't believe in ghosts, but something stranger than the average haunting comes dripping to his doorstep. The story opens with Elodia, a mysterious woman, being covered in slime and heaving her way out of the lake. It's all part of her coming home - to Tom. This is one of those creeping flash fictions that only gives you full context after you've gotten goosebumps. The flood inside Tom is calling to her.

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