Crosspost: Snippets from Hearts of Tabat (Cat Rambo)

Picture drawn by Cat Rambo

This takes place on a warm but rainy spring morning, when everything is starting to bloom and the air smells like new things.

I’m working on the sequel to recently-finished Beasts of Tabat, whose working title is Hearts of Tabat. Here’s a snippet I wrote this morning.

Adelina did something she’d mocked other people for doing. She consulted a Dream Reader.
Everyone sensible knew that Dream Readers were frauds, making up stories to suit the needs they could read in their clients. Everyone’s dreams were as individual as their minds, everyone had their own internal cartography leading to entirely different parts of their brains.

But the dream had come three mornings in a row. Three mornings when she woke up with a start, fear clamping its fingers, slender as reeds, strong as iron, around her throat, her hands clenched so hard that her nails bit into the heels of her hands.

She was walking along a bridge, which narrowed further and further, so much only a single person could walk across it, then crumbled away in the middle, leaving a two foot gap. She knew a wide enough step would take her across it, but when she looked down, she saw the water, seething with toothy eels, their lanterned eyes staring up at her, waiting for her to fall.

She saw Bella far, far away, down the long road on the other side, back turned as she walked away, too far to hear Adelina calling after her. Snowflakes were falling around her, as though a cloud echoed her progress overhead, and moonlight glinted on the snow, tinting it purple and red.
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September Publications

Sorry these are so late. But look what wonders September held!

• Neile Graham had two poems, “Ksampguiyaeps—Woman-Out-To-Sea” and “Hermitage,” in Lady Churchill’s Rosebud Wristlet 29.

• Sandra M. Odell’s “Listening to It Rain,” a story of  loneliness, love, and coming of age after death, appeared in Fireside Magazine.

• Cat Rambo had audio reprints of “Five Ways to Fall in Love on Planet Porcelain” and “Grandmother’s Road Trip” in Drabblecast and Tales to Terrify, respectively, as well as a Portuguese reprint, “Os Primos de Kallakak” in Dagon.

• Cat’s new fiction publications include “To Read the Sea,” published in What Fates Imposeand “Of Selkies, Disco Balls, and Anna Plane,” a story of lesbian wereseals, in Glitter and Mayhem.

Stories from the month of July

Happy summer! Here’s some stuff to read.

• Liz Argall’s “Blunt Force Trauma Delivered by Spouse,” in the much-anticipated This is How You Die (the second Machine of Death anthology) is “a graphic, painful character study of an Australian farmer in a passionate but abusive relationship, fighting to rebuild her life in spite of her eponymous prediction” (Tasha Robinson of AV Club).

• Cat Rambo has two stories out: “On the Big-fisted Circuit,” a story about people fighting in giant robot suits, is up at Daily Science Fiction, and “Elsewhere, Within, Elsewhen” is in Beyond the Sun, an anthology. It’s about personal struggles in a distant colony. Also, talking rocks.

• JM Sidorova’s debut novel, The Age of Ice, was published this month, along with a companion story called “The Colors of Cold.” I haven’t read my copy of the novel yet, but the reviews are hot! So to speak.

June Stories

• Lauren Dixon’s “Your Words are Your Life, Your Death,” a non-fiction blog post about writing, death, and aging, was posted on Booklife Now.

• Sandra M. Odell’s “The Dictionary’s Apprentice” showed up at the Cast of Wonders YA podcast.

• And according to Leah Bobet, publisher of Ideomancer, Miscuer Vicki Saunders’s “‘Deus Ex Chelonia’” takes us on the most whimsical post-apocalyptic quest we’ve read in years and years.”

Happy Independence day, everyone!

Stories from the month of May

And what do MayStories bring?

• Cat Rambo’s near-future SF story, “A Man and His Parasite,” appeared in SQ Magazine, and odd little flash piece “Spiders, Centipedes, and Holes” came out in The Journal of Unlikely Entomology.

• Emily C. Skaftun’s “The Taking Tree” was published in Daily Science Fiction. Just a little revenge for the Giving Tree.

• Two stories from E. Lily Yu appeared this month: “Ilse, Who Saw Clearly” in Apex Magazine and “The Forgetting Shiraz” in the Boston Review.

More Things Said During Crit Session

Totoro At NorwesconFrom notes found while cleaning:

“I love the idea that you get so gothy and morose that you just become a vampire.”

“He could have legitimate powers once he starts throwing up spiders.”

“I didn’t understand the importance of the vampires.”

“There were a lot of places where the characters were just going somewhere.”

“Don’t sigh at me.”

“If everything is possible, nothing matters. Blow it out of the park.”

“There’s no non-stupid way of putting it.”

“There’s some well-intentioned fascist vampires.”

“There used to be a chapter entitled ‘Vampire Training Montage.’”

“I always like more detail as to which organs are missing.”

April stories. Yay!

• Caren Gussoff’s “Section iii,” originally published in Abyss and Apex, was podcast(ed?) by Dark Fiction.

• Cat Rambo’s “Soft,” which she describes as “overly didactic science fiction flash,” appeared in Daily Science Fiction. 

• “The Fisher Queen,” also by Cat, was published in Fish. It’s an Excerpt from the Arthurian cycle set on the Outer Banks.

• And in more Cat Rambo news (yay, Cat!), “Dagger and Mask”–space opera assassin and pirate captain–appeared in The Other Half of the Sky.

• Emily C. Skaftun’s “Final Testament of a Weapons Engineer” was published in After Death. In it a dead man must prevent his children from stumbling onto the booby trap he set for himself.

“Melt With You,” also by Emily (and permit me to squee, for this is me!), appeared in Clarkesworld. It’s a tale of religious war among garden decorations. Also available in audio.

March Madness: Stories!

It was an explosive month for horrific miscuers! Look at all this great fiction!

• Liz Argall had two amazing stories published this month. “Shadow Play,” a story of shapeshifting, memory, and the history of puppets, inspired by random banter with William Alexander over twitter, is at Daily Science Fiction. And “Mermaid’s Hook” is at Apex: Rescuing a sailor is not as easy as it sounds. Fellow miscuer Rashida Smith calls it “haunting and deeply satisfying.” And! Proceeds from this story go to the Leonard Pung Memorial Scholarship.

• Eliza Hirsch’s “A Song for the Season” is at Cast of Wonders in audio form. It’s a story of love and tragedy in a village setting.

• “Logic and Magic in the Time of the Boat Lift” by Cat Rambo (with Ben Burgis) is available in word form at Giganotosaurus and audio word form at Podcastle. Paraconsistent logic, oracular nuns, and were-gators in 1980s Miami!

• Cat Rambo also has an audio reprint, “Amid the Words of War,” available at Drabblecast. It’s a story about an alien POW turned sex worker.

• And E. Lily Yu introduces us to a new treatment for grief in “Loss, with Chalk Diagrams,” up at Eclipse Online.

Amazing, right? I can’t wait to see what we get up to in April!