December 7th, 2009


Good news!

Actually even more good news than I'd realized!

1) My story, Eyes of Carven Emerald, has been accepted for the Clockwork Phoenix 3 anthology!

I've been pinching myself somewhat, but since time_shark posted about it, I guess he can't back out now :)

(I have writing-thoughts about this, but I'm splitting them out into another post.)

2) And the Clockwork Jungle book, which contains The Mechanical Aviary of Emperor Jalal-ud-din Muhammad Akbar and my illustration of scriitor's Otto's Elephant (as well as lots of other awesome stuff) is now officially here!

I guess I jumped the gun a bit, before, but now it's available, and there will be goodies on the Shimmer site. Specifically, us reading from our stories. Starting with Jay Lake!

...So that means all three! of my clockwork-bird-character stories have homes (the other one being Sultana Lena's Gift, at RoF) and I should really get in the research I need to write that fourth one that's been poking around in my head. It shall be fun.

On revision and rewrites: my Clarion full-circle

My biggest squee when time_shark emailed to say he'd accepted my story, Eyes of Carven Emerald, for Clockwork Phoenix 3 was of course that he was taking it and I'd get to be in the Clockwork Phoenix antho series :)

(And that it gets a genrebendy interstitial home, in general, because this one is not a genre story in shape or in intent.)

My second biggest squee was finding out that the wonderful frostokovich is also in the antho, and we shall get to be TOC buddies!

Not just 'cause I love his writing, though I do (It's often darker than I can always handle, so I can only read it sometimes, but those times I inhale it). And not just 'cause he was my week 1 Clarion instructor (though he is awesome and he really brought our group together as a supportive structure, subtly enough that I didn't even cotton on till week 5 or 6).

It's because my story wouldn't be what it is if not for advice that frostokovich gave us at Clarion. (If I remember right. It's six weeks of brain-changing, after all; things mush together. It's also possible that multiple instructors mentioned this. But even if so, Greg was first.)

The advice was: when multiple people have a problem at the same point in your story (or when someone you trust has a problem at that point), they're generally right about the existence of a problem, and they're generally wrong about the solution. So unless their solution rings true to you, it's best to look at what they say, think about why they would have the problem they think they have, and then figure out how you can best solve that problem in a way that's right for the story.

So it's thanks to frostokovich that I fixed this story in almost exactly the opposite way time_shark recommended.

See, I originally sent Eyes of Carven Emerald to Mike early, and he sent it back as a near-miss in... Septemberish? He suggested a specific rewrite; after thinking about it I replied saying "I can't do that, but if XX is your problem I am failing to make its emotional arc clear, and will be working on that anyway. Would you like to see a rewrite even if it doesn't do anything you suggested?"

And he said sure.

So! I added 500 words, two scenes, complexity, and a few years to the part he suggested I tighten/prune down/clarify. I was pretty confident that it was right for the story, but figured it probably wouldn't be right for Mike.

And I have seldom been more thrilled to be wrong :)


Have I mentioned I'm thrilled? Maybe once or twice? And looking at the lineup I am even more thrilled. There's so much awesome there!

(I cringed when I realized that John C. Wright was the perpetrator of the "homosex activist" rant. But hey, that means he can have my "homosex" in his contributor copy, so maybe we're even.
Also? So! much! awesome! Way too much for that little man to ruin things for me.)