DI Sara Nayar is not the bright young police detective she seems to be; she’s actually the Hindu goddess Saraswathi, living as a human after a dispute with her mother, the trickster goddess Mohini. When a man is murdered at the Sheffield Castle Market, Sara senses that another god is involved– perhaps the Norse god Loki. But setting aside her divine nature has left Sara dangerously vulnerable. With the help of her partner, the attractive DI Michael Higgins, Sara must uncover both the human and divine reasons for the crime and protect the city she loves.
The short story anthology Not So Stories is available to preorder. Written by PoC as rebuttals to the original colonialist nostalgia, there are a wide variety of tales.
I touched on the feeling of disconnect, how diaspora often feel they have no home in their current land, nor the land of their parents.
From the foreword by Nikesh Shukla:
“It’s a brave choice to take something so much a part of the canon as Kipling and make it more inclusive, and yet that’s what has happened in the following pages. There is a lot of talk at the moment about decolonizing our school and university syllabuses, especially English Literature ones where the canon remains pale, male and stale.
However, the real fight to ensure our stories are inclusive, representative and sensitive starts with the stories of our childhood. Here is a new take on some of yours.”
Not so Stories is mentioned in the Barnes & Noble 95 Books Sci-Fi & Fantasy Editors Can’t Wait for You to Read in 2018.
No So Stories, edited by David Thomas Moore (Abaddon, April 10)
Rudyard Kipling’s Just So Stories – a fantastical and rich collection of children’s stories – was one of the first true children’s books in the English language, and is a timeless classic that continues to delight readers to this day. It is also deeply rooted in British colonialism. Not So Stories brings together new and established writers of colour from around the world to redress the balance. To imbue these classic stories with a refreshing new perspective as they interrogate, challenge and celebrate their legacy.
I have a story ‘Samsara’ coming out in the wonderfully titled Not So Stories by Abaddon Books, a diverse anthology written “in reaction” to Rudyard Kipling’s Just So Stories.
A spokesperson for Abaddon Books said: “Rudyard Kipling’s Just So Stories was one of the first true children’s books in the English language, a timeless classic that continues to delight readers to this day. Beautiful, evocative and playful, the stories of ‘How the Whale Got His Throat’ or ‘The First Letter Written’ paint a magical, primal world. It is also deeply rooted in British colonialism. Kipling saw the Empire as a benign, civilising force, and his writing can be troubling to modern readers. Not So Stories attempts to redress the balance, bringing together new and established writers of colour from around the world to take the Just So Stories back; giving voices to cultures that were long deprived them.”
‘With a gorgeous cover by Vegas-based artist Joseph Watson, and interior illustrations by renowned British writer and illustrator Woodrow Phoenix, this is an anthology for those who are conscious of the power behind the stories we tell to both our children and ourselves.”
The anthology will feature stories by Adiwijaya Iskandar, Joseph E. Cole, Raymond Gates, Zina Hutton, Cassandra Khaw, Paul Krueger, Mimi Mondal, Tauriq Moosa, Jeannette Ng, Ali Nouraei, Zedeck Siew, Rivers Solomon, Achala Upendran and myself.
Abaddon will publish Not So Stories in April 2018.
You know what, I think it is. I knew before I saw the film that it was made with old-school practical effects, full of skilful stunt driving and careful explosions, but without seeing the actual footage, it was hard to imagine. Watch this all the way though. My jaw dropped by the last stunt…
I’ve got some great news. I”m thrilled to say I’m now represented by the brilliant Jennie Goloboy of Red Sofa Literary. She’s got a final version of the currently titled ‘The Goddess of the North’ and I hope to have more news soon. If you have any questions, I can now use the classic phrase “talk to my agent”.
My Clarion West 2012 classmate Alyc Helms has just released her novel ‘The Conclave of Shadows‘, the second in the Missy Master series. To mark the occasion, Alyc has conducted a number of interviews with our cohort.
For the past six weeks, I’ve been checking in with my cohort from CW2012 and asking them to talk about their CW experiences: where they were as writers before the workshop, how the workshop impacted their writing, what they’re working on now, etc. I fell a little behind in posting the interviews, so we have two Seventh Week treats.
Penguin Random House UK are part of the WriteNow project to find, mentor and publish new writers from under-represented communities. They ask you to explain what that means to you:
For example, you could be a writer from a socio-economically marginalised background, be a writer from BAME (Black, Asian, Minority Ethnic) or LGBTQ (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans, Queer) communities, or have a disability.
There are 150 writer spots open over 3 workshop days held in London (Saturday 1 October 2016), Birmingham (Saturday 26 November 2016) and Manchester (Saturday 4 February 2017). Those days will give the attendees access to editors, agents, booksellers and other published authors. Ten writers will be selected who will go on to receive a year of mentorship with the end goal of publication.
How to apply?
- They want a brief summary of your book – what’s it called, what’s it about and what makes it special? They also want 1,000 words from anywhere in the book. The 1,000 words you’re most proud of.
- They also want 1,000 words from anywhere in the book. The 1,000 words you’re most proud of.
- They require you to explain why you write and how you fit their criteria in feeling underrepresented in 500 words.
- You can’t have published a book within the last 10 years through a commercial publishing house. Nor can you have an agent or publishing contract.
- You’ll come from an under-represented background.
- You need to be 18 or older and a UK resident.
What are they looking for?
Fiction: They are keen to get applications from writers in the following genres: commercial fiction, women’s fiction, crime and thriller, romance, science fiction, children’s and young adult.
Non-fiction: They want to see books that help change people’s lives for the better. This could be in fields such as personal development, business, or health and fitness; writing that promotes an understanding of the world through history, social commentary or politics, or enhances happiness by exploring the natural world, philosophy or creativity.
The deadline in Friday 2nd September and you can apply here!
Nina Allan has written a great piece over at Strange Horizons. It looks at British Horror, the present and the future. She bases her thoughts on FantasyCon in Nottingham.
One of the events I was most looking forward to at last autumn’s FantasyCon in Nottingham was a panel I was invited to sit on entitled “British Horror: Present and Future.” Our brief was to explore and discuss where British horror is currently at, what the future might hold, and how and if the field is becoming more diverse. We enjoyed a spirited discussion, including some enthusiastic contributions from the audience, but with less than an hour in hand, there was never going to be enough time to cover all bases. I felt particularly disappointed that the panel became somewhat bogged down in the perennial griping about the publishing industry that tends to go on, leaving even less time for what seemed to me at the outset to be the central points of importance in the discussion: where are we going as horror readers, writers, and editors, and how and how much greater diversity—of subject matter, of stylistic approach, of influence, of gender, of sexuality, of social and ethnic background—is being encouraged within the field. I came away from Nottingham still mulling this over.
Somewhat conveniently for the purposes of this discussion, FantasyCon 2015 saw the launch of three “best of” horror anthologies: the latest (#26) in Stephen Jones’s redoubtable Best New Horror series, which has now been running for more than a quarter of a century, The 2nd Spectral Book of Horror Stories under the editorship of Mark Morris, and the twenty-fifth anniversary reissue of Best New Horror #3, from 1991. Looking down the table of contents of this last, I encountered many familiar, well-loved names—some sadly no longer with us, some very much still writing and contributing to the literature. I want to stress right from the off how important the Best New Horror series has been to me, both as a reader and as a writer. When I began developing a professional interest in horror fiction towards the end of the 1990s, BNH was where I first started to acquaint myself with the field: who was writing, what they were writing, how they related to one another. I would read each volume cover to cover when it first appeared, adding to my knowledge and developing my taste with each new outing.
I have a new short story out in After the Fall.
In a world of transhuman survival and horror, technology allows the re-shaping of bodies and minds, but also creates opportunities for oppression and puts the capability for mass destruction in the hands of everyone. Other threats lurk in the devastated habitats of the Fall, dangers both familiar and alien.
After the Fall is the first anthology from Posthuman Studios, set in the world of Eclipse Phase, their award-winning roleplaying game.
My story is called Nostalgia.
Not everyone clings to the outer frontiers of technology and transhumanism. Unlikely allies come together to protect the future from the past
Available on Kindle: Eclipse Phase: After the Fall: The Anthology of Transhuman Survival & Horror