sábado, 12 de diciembre de 2009

Two more stories and the fun is over

Way back when I started writing in 2006-2007 (can't remember which) I made a pact with myself: I wouldn't attempt to write a novel until I had written and published ten stories in professional markets. The idea was that by then I'd be a good enough writer not to be wasting my time and energy trying to make a novel work. I did try to write a novel after my fifth published pro story. Hubris! I said, and resolved to wait until I'd completed my goal.

Of course, it works both ways. My total pro stories now number 8 (some of them have been accepted but not actually published yet). I can hear the clock tick, if you know what I mean. The day of Novelizing is 'night, and I hate it.

But, but... (you're saying)... isn't this what you wanted? To write stories to learn the ropes and then write that fantastic novel you've had in your head all along?

Yes, and no. I do love writing stories and seeing them into print, and I have learned a lot since I started, but I'm nowhere near ready for the novel. Plotting is still a stranger to me. I still feel my way around a 5000 word story, spilling it out without logic or reason and then relying on my poor critiquers (sorry Mom, sorry Villa Diodati) to make suggestions. Then I apply their common sense and and think about the plot a bit and collage the stupid thing into some sort of shape. I am occasionally successful with this approach, but the most frequent critique leveled at my stories is still that "they just don't make any sense".

The thought of having to go this route with a novel makes me shudder. I have a monstrous case of cold feet. It's already hard enough to figure out why people do things in a 2000-5000 word story, my current project is aiming at 20000 words and I'm totally and irreversibly lost (or so it seems). How can I even think of spending a whole year (or more) drafting out a 90000 word monster to then have to reassemble it bit by bit?

So, am I happy I've almost achieved my goal? Sure! Will I be terribly sad if my next submissions come back rejected?

Eh--I'll go get some ice-cream now.

lunes, 7 de diciembre de 2009

The Clockwork Jungle Book (Shimmer #11) is out!!!

Fans of the minute, delicate and strange, here's the return of your favorite magazine.
My very own "The Story in Which Dog Dies" is in this issue, along with stuff by Jay Lake, Susannah Mandel, Alethea Kontis, Amal El-Mohtar and others.

Purchase a print issue for 8 bucks plus shipping or, if you prefer, download the electronic version for 4$.

I can't wait to get my copies.

Sweet!

lunes, 26 de octubre de 2009

Share my Happy

Things are weird lately at the Hospital (remodeling, shuffling of people around other Hospitals of Madrid, random bureaucratic crazy etc) but I knew this was my day.

I got most of my to do list done for today and went shopping...


And found this. Silly cheap and gorgeous.

Chopped onion and garlic, olive oil, white wine and some 10 minutes later...


The world has been good to me today.

And with a little luck, tomorrow I'll write.

martes, 13 de octubre de 2009

"As Women Fight" Asimov's Dec 09

The December issue of Asimov's is hitting stores and mailboxes as we speak and, along with stories by some very cool authors, is my own humble offering. "As Women Fight" is another gender story (no, I'm not bored with that yet) set in a pretty alien culture.
I can't wait to see how people like it.

sábado, 8 de agosto de 2009

"Clapping for the Fairies" in Greek

Universe Pathways has accepted to reprint "Clapping for the Fairies" in the Greek version of the mag (they also have an English version).

This will be my third story published in Greek. I'm thrilled. Since I'm not doing much writing now, I'm putting more emphasis in the foreign reprints. So far, so good.

sábado, 13 de junio de 2009

Reviews for Shoes-To-Run

Despite the demise of The Fix, there are still a couple review sites and blogs out there. Whenever I have time (which these days seems to be every two leap years) I like to find out what people have to say about my stories.

Overall, I think Shoes-to-Run (Asimov's, July 09) is being well received.

Suite 101 gives the story a "Recommended" and has this to say:
'Shoes-to-Run' by Sara Genge marks her third appearance in Asimovs. This time its the story of a girl who feels like a boy trapped in the wrong body, living outside a domed Paris of the semi-distant future. When Shai-Shai sees her first menstrual blood she makes a desperate gamble and asks to join the men in a hunt, for it is hunting that defines a man. Recommended.


NotfreeSFreader is rarely thrilled with my work but gives me a 3 out of 5.

Over at Garbled Signals, Matt highlights Shoes-to-Run as well as R. Garcia y Robertson and Ian McHugh's stories (yes, I love being in this bunch) and says this:
Sara Genge’s “Shoes to Run” presents another well-developed alien society, this time here on Earth, in the shadow of a future Paris, in fact. Here, environmental disaster has made it impossible for European natives to survive in the open, and even the ethnic Africans who lived in the Paris suburbs required genetic modification for protection from the elements and radiation. Among the descendents of these former immigrants, we meet Shai-Shai, a boy on the brink of manhood, but born in a girl’s body. From this, Genge develops a strong human story about Shai-Shai’s struggle to be accepted as a hunter, and of the survival of humanity by a return to its earliest customs.


Lois Tilton rarely likes my writing, but always has insightful comments on what didn't work for her, find them here:
The world has changed drastically. A dome covers Paris to protect it from the radiation, but the tribes, probably nano-engineered, survive outside as hunters. But such matters as radiation don't concern Shai-Shai today, when she has discovered that, despite all her efforts, she seems to have become a woman.

No, she couldn't be a woman. Not after all she'd gone through, not after all she'd prayed. Girl she could live with—it was temporary anyway. Woman was permanent.

The story of Shai-Shai's hunt could have been told of just about any tribal hunter in Earth's history. The well-told tale of the hunter's bond with the prey may or may not have been the product of nano-engineering, but I could easily accept it without. This leaves Shai-Shai's story only tenuously connected to the SFnal matters of dome and nano and the fact that there are kudu herds just outside Paris. I wonder where the tribes are going to find their shoes, now.


So far, that's all I've been able to find out there. I can't wait to read the other stories (in particular, I've liked Kit Reed's stuff in the past and "Sleepless in the House of Ye" sounds good) but I haven't received my complimentary issues yet which is in no way unusual thanks to the average workings of the Spanish Postal System (aka: submission nemesis). Ah, well, I guess I'll just have to wait a bit longer.

Another foreign sale, "Master Yung" reprinted in Greek in Ennea

I'm just been informed that "Master Yung" is in the April issue of Ennea, a comic and SF mag that comes out with the Greek newspaper Eleftherotypia.

This is my second sale to Ennea. I wonder how I sound in Greek.

martes, 2 de junio de 2009

Another gender story: As Women Fight sold to Asimov's

This is my fourth sale to Asimov's and fills me with glee.

The working title was "Trannies in the Snow". Make of that what you may.

lunes, 30 de marzo de 2009

Shimmer 10!

To celebrate the 10th issue of Shimmer Magazine the editors have launched a free online edition for you to enjoy. As happens, my story "Counting Down to the End of the Universe" is in this issue.

Isn't that cool?

If you haven't had an opportunity to read Shimmer, take the time to do so now. It's one of the quirkiest, shinniest mags out there right now. I'm thrilled they bought "Counting Down...", especially since Sean Markey was chief instigator. I have another story forthcoming in Shimmer "The Story in which Dog Dies" which was also coherced out of me by Sean.

Speaking of which, I haven't been writing too much lately. Sean, care to do anything about that?

domingo, 22 de marzo de 2009

My Friends Rock (otherwise titled Aliette de Bodard, Benjamin Rosenbaum and Mary Robinette Kowal rock!)

So, Aliette de Bodard is on the ballot for the Campbell and Benjamin Rosenbaum and Mary Robinette Kowal made the Hugo ballot.

I will not try to share my manic happy, unadulterated, stupid grinning glee. I've known Aliette for a while over the internets and got to meet her in person at the first Villa Diodati, which we've both faithfully attended ever since. I'm a big fan of her work: I find it poignant, twisty and very very different from my own stuff, which I appreciate (I like to be surprised). Ben I met at Villa Diodati 3: he's one of the funniest people I know, and I know a lot of funny people. Also, he talks even more than I do. I respect people who can break my records. Third, I've become a fan of his wacky surrealism and plan on incorporating sentient, saintly oranges in my own work. Mary Robinette Kowal I know only over Internet but she's fun and I love her work.

Aliette has gone through the trouble of putting together a fiction sampler for the Campbell here. Even if you can't vote for the Campbell I recommend downloading it because, hey, it's free! Check out "The Last Xuyan Bride". If you've ever wondered what an Aztec+Chinese detective story might look like, well, this is it. It's also alternate history, in case you were wondering, and the plot snaps right under your eyes. Now, go read!

Evil Robot Monkeys by Mary Robinette Kowal is available as an audiostory. Six minutes of awesome. Free, of course.

Benjamin Rosenbaum is on the Hugo ballot for his novella, True Names, cowritten with Cory Doctorow. This one is also for free! It starts thus:
Beebe fried the asteroid to slag when it left, exterminating millions of
itself.

That's the kind of first line everyone wishes they'd written. And now this blog post will be cut short as my attention has wandered to Ben's novella and the sound of the printer, spitting out page after page of deliciousness which I will shortly read.

viernes, 13 de marzo de 2009

Announcement

I'm still elligible for the Campbell.

Chech out the links on the right for stories you might like.

sábado, 14 de febrero de 2009

HAPPY 500th DAILY CABAL!

The daily cabal, a blog of bite sized daily fiction which I contribute to, published its 500th story on Feb 13th.

Here's the official announcement:

Friday the 13th of February, 2009, a group of 13 science fiction and fantasy
writers called The Daily Cabal posted its 500th story online. The Daily
Cabal has posted a free, previously unpublished story of 400 words or less
every weekday without interruption since it launched on March 26th, 2007.



Most Cabal stories are either science fiction or fantasy. Recent stories
include "The Tungsten Lama’s Weekly Webinar," "Hollywood Goddess," "In the
Elevator with Albert Einstein," and "Math for Witches."



The Cabal is the brainchild of writer Rudi Dornemann and writer and editor
Jeremiah Tolbert. Its members are responsible for scores of professionally
published stories in addition to books, articles, and poetry. All 500 Cabal
stories published to date are available on the Cabal Web site at
www.dailycabal.com , and the group can also be found on Facebook.


The Daily Cabal was born almost two years ago and there have been changes to the lineup of writers since then. Some of us are on hiatus (or sort of) and there have been plenty of new additions, people bringing new ideas (and stamina) to a project that all of us believe in. We've gotten good reader response during this time and hope to keep on going until we run out of ink.

If you haven't stopped by before take the time to peek. There are 500 stories in the archives for you to browse through. That's a lot of microfiction.

Enjoy!

jueves, 5 de febrero de 2009

"Slow Stampede" mixed reviews

The March issue of Asimov's is out and "Slow Stampede" has gotten mixed reviews.

Lois Tilton gives me her first RECOMMENDED for this story.

Raj is a bandit, young, ruthless and ambitious to be the next Chief. His village makes its living by raiding the caravans of Swamp Elephants that travel through the Swamp where they live.

From the distance, they looked like Jesus-bugs skimming the mud, but Raj knew that they stood taller than the sequoias that anchored their roots hundreds of yards under the surface. The swampiphant's legs pierced the upper layers of silt, finding purchase further down as the mud served to stabilize their tremendous height.
But the hungry Merfolk also live in the Swamp, and must be reckoned with.


Colorful and imaginative worldbuilding makes this one entertaining.

RECOMMENDED


Garbled Signals has a less than enthusiastic review:

“Slow Stampede”, by Sara Genge, presents a finely-imagined world of bandits raiding caravans of immense “swamp elephants” on a low-gravity planet. The main character is well developed and very realistic, as a young bandit chafing at the authority of his tribe; but maybe he’s too self-confident and amoral to win our sympathy. He is also the only character to really be developed (perhaps reflecting his own self-centered point of view). The story ends with his marrying a character who has not been developed beyond a brief sketch. This, and other loose ends, makes the story feel incomplete. On the other hand, if this is an excerpt from a novel, there is plenty to build on here.


That one goes to show how hard it is sometimes to make unlikable protags work.

Another one:

"Slow Stampede" by Sara Genge is set in a world with swampiphants and Merpeople. Raj wants to be the Chief of his village and plots ways to do it. How things work out for him make for a nicely-told little story--
SFRevu

Overall, I'm pretty happy with what people have been saying about the story. I've finished the copyedits of "Shoes-to-Run" so that one should appear in Asimov's in a few months.

*Edited to add this revue by Colin Harvey, Suite101

Separating them is Sara Genge's 'Slow Stampede.' On an alien planet, Raj and his tribe eke out a marginal existence in a vast swamp also inhabited by cannibal merpeople, through which pass regular caravans of swamp-elephants ripe for the picking. Newcomer Genge skillfully depicts an exotic world peopled by ambitious youngsters, doddering elders and indulgent mothers. Recommended.


Benjamin Crowell's 'Whatness" also gets a recommended and Holly Phillip's 'The Long, Cold Goodbye' gets a highly recommended. Reading all these reviews of the other stories in this issue makes me look wistfully at the mail and wonder when I'll get my copies.

Overall, the issue seems to be sitting well with reviewers.

lunes, 26 de enero de 2009

17h shift

Not so bad, as far as shifts go but I've slept only 5h in the last 40 and those have been in 45 minute naps (for some reason I couldn't sleep when I got back home and then somebody called on the phone...) Needless to say I'm grumpy and busted and exhausted from my 3 hours of doctorate course (dealing mostly with proteins and antioxidants that are toxic in the doses needed to do their antioxidant business--but these cell biologists wouldn't know that). I haven't written much in the past 6 months and haven't finished a story. So doubly grumpy.

I'm writing a fantasy story now, and it sort of seems to be working even if I'm screwing with the rules more than usual and don't know whether it will see the light of day.

So, if anyone knows of any really cool anthos that could motivate me to write, comment away.
Or, if anyone would like to see some Genge stuff on their magazine/ezine suggest away. I could probably finish something if I were writing with an objective in mind. Or maybe not.

jueves, 22 de enero de 2009

What the World is thinking about the US now

Oooohhhh, wasn't the speech luvely? And we really liked Michelle's outfits (the white dress more than the suit) and isn't Barack handsome? You can tell he's really in love with his wife by the way he twirls her around and steps on her dress (WTF??? SRSL!) And American's sure know how to throw a ceremony. And isn't the curious mix of formality and familiarity such an American thing? The daaaarlings. Americans are cute and cuddly. Cute and cuddly like a bear eating honey. A feral bear eating honey before he tears your limbs apart. Oh, yes, cute and cuddly Americans.

And best of all, Americans are suddenly not so horrible anymore because Obama's daughters are SWEET!

(By God, you/we better live up to this, people.)