Writing

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Below you’ll find blurbs for my novels, novellas, short stories and serial flash stories. Or – in the case of the flash series – you’ll not. There may also be some soundtrack selections because music be the food of love.

Novels:

The Last Life of Avrilis 

(YA: literary sci-fi with steampunk aesthetic – Complete)

As a Sentient living at the end of time, sixteen-year-old Avrilis is one of the few to know that life repeats, replaying a script exactly. As an orphan cloistered in her home for the past three years, she knows that even a scripted life can suddenly change. It has, this time around. Her mother died; her father disappeared. Her only companions have been the other planet in the sky, her memory of a boy called Isaac, and the protective “halo” that absorbs the electricity a Sentient creates by living off-script – even if they didn’t have a choice.

Leaving home is Avrilis’ only chance at finding the real Isaac and uncovering what ruined her family’s script, making this lifetime go so terribly wrong – but outside, zealots are preying on anyone who defies the planets with change. When Avrilis saves the life of a vagabond moments before he’ll die, she means him to be her protection. Instead, the two find the subterranean Sentient city – and that the father who abandoned her has a plan to end the world for good. Now she’ll cross the sky from her planet to the other and find out whether this world is worth saving – as long as the zealots and the end of time don’t catch up to her first.

*

The Sound & The Stone

(YA: Contemporary Fantasy – Complete)

With a history of sprite hijinks, a remarkably high population of beloved elokos, and the first gargoyle to perch in the city in forever, Portland doesn’t need any help staying weird. It’s also got a siren hiding in plain sight and a girl who sheds, but no one’s supposed to know about that.

At sixteen, Tavia’s already had to run away from one town. This time she’s doing whatever her parents tell her so she never puts them in danger of exposure again. Sure, the world used to adore sirens, but that was before they were almost exclusively black women. Now siren voices aren’t desirable and their power isn’t romantic, it’s subversive. They’re dangerous. Tavia doesn’t want to be either of those things so she’ll deal with her dad’s respectability politics and she’ll hide inside the network, a community inside the black community, pledged to keep her secret. Whatever it takes.

Effie’s only been with Tavia’s family for three years, but it feels like home. After all the loneliness and loss (first her mom and then her four childhood friends), she’s got a sister and best friend and she couldn’t be happier. Okay, she’d be happier if she could figure out why the sprites who turned her friends to statues let her go, why her hair moves on its own, and why her grandma hates her renaissance faire alt-life so much. But. Close enough.

When the girls’ favorite natural hair diva becomes a pariah after revealing she’s a siren, their junior year/world is turned upside down. Between Effie coming apart at the seams (literally) and Tavia involuntarily learning a new siren call when all she wants is to keep quiet, no secret seems safe anymore—and soon Portland won’t either.

*

This Is Not Heaven

(Adult: Cross-genre – Complete)

Utilizing academic writing, footnotes and marginalia, TINH is fiction masquerading as non-fiction, as it presents the story of an anonymous student who – enamored with a young family of color – pens a treatise that both chronicles the group’s ill-fated pilgrimage for justice and denounces the contract that brought immortality to earth in the first place.

Note: An excerpt – the revised opening chapter of the novel – entitled “Excerpt From A Treatise On The Exchange: a work-in-progress” was published by tNY Press’ Electronic Encyclopedia of Experimental Literature (now defunct).

Novellas:

Keepsake

(Adult: Speculative Literary – Complete)

It is the 1920s as they were but for one thing: the ability to extract unwanted memories. In 1925 Montreal, Elsie – aka Dolores Extract No. 1 – is a Mem born of such a procedure. But unlike the others, she isn’t fixed in the moment she represents; she knows where she is, what she is and that no other Mem has lived so long.

After living eighteen years in the real world, extraordinary Elsie is recalled to the Vault, the safe deposit dormitory where the other Mems live and expire. Her Source – the original Dolores – is planning to reprint Elsie, but the  process of printing memories over an existing Mem has proven to significantly shorten its lifespan. Fighting back will force the outside world to grapple with the question of what it means to be a Mem, something Elsie can’t be sure of herself. To the Professor who has been her father – and the father of the extraction technology – she has been redemption; to Harvey, the scientist to whom she’s assigned inside the Vault, she has been a muse and quagmire; to the man who married her Source, she is the piece of Dolores he never knew – the best piece. Now, in the time she has left, Elsie might define what it means to be human.

Short Stories:

Jigsaw

(Adult: Speculative Literary – Complete)

True love means a perfect fit, and Eva Paul is pre-love. She’s more than a Jigsaw client preparing to be coded to her fiance; she’s also a Rehabilitator, a case worker helping couples who originally rejected the procedure find their way out of the unfortunate lives that result. Because second only to the motto that changed the world is this: The first order isn’t always the right one. Now Eva will piece the day together – rearranging her 4th pre-love appointment, her visit to the volatile couple living in the exile they’ve chosen, and a stolen hour on the bench outside of Jigsaw where she holds a daily vigil – to decide her place in this puzzle.

*Apologies if this is not ready for public consumption. At the moment, I love it. (But then, it may make more sense to me than a reader…)

*

Caroline Samir is Alive and Well

(Adult: Speculative – Complete)

Caroline Samir is not a Luddite, just because she doesn’t want a reader embedded in her arm. Her husband, Darec – ever on the cutting edge and constantly plugged in to the domain that serves as news, social media, communication hub, and life overall – will like it or lump it. But when change happens at the speed of bytes and the whole world knows about it in real time, the punishment for not being plugged in is being the last to know that life as Caroline knows it is over.

*

 Letters to Margaret

(Adult: Literary – Complete)

The title may well change, the story may not be for the market, but it’s coming and the character is clear. Things happen differently with this one. I decided to write something, that it couldn’t be speculative, that there had to be a reason (this is a loaded word for me, no time to explain) and writing revealed it. I remember that used to happen more often before I wrote genre fiction. But now I know here, so I know I’ll finish it.

Anywho. Here’s a selection from the writing playlist:

*

Serial Flash Fiction:

Thus far, there are three completed pieces of what I hope to be 20 – 30, making the collection roughly novella-length when it’s done. However, since they’re all standalone, there’s some room for changes of plan. At the moment, I’m enjoying writing a progressive story told in self-contained flash pieces which vary in tone and occasionally POV – never wrote in 2nd before #3! – that can also be taken as a whole.

#1: Eloise & Chance

#2: Outside Chance

#3: So(u)l Companion

~

There are several novels/novellas at some stage or another of completion (one called Imogen but just for now; The Weight of Alabaster; The Momentary Light Afflictions; etc). There are several short stories meant for the same collection. There are screenplays at various stages of completion, and some projects waiting to decide whether they’re for the page or the screen. There is a television series. There are a few stage plays.

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