Well, (claps hands) that’s that.
All the submissions have been read, all the rejections have been sent, and now that the dust has cleared, I’m left with the 12 stories and 3 poems that make up the contents of Midnight Echo #4. Assuming nothing falls over between now and April, it’ll be my delight to present you with stories from the likes of Aurealis Award winners Chris Green and Geoffrey Maloney and international man about town Dan Braum, as well as the first poem penned by the lovely Jenny Blackford in many a long year.
I’ve received well over 200 submissions from all corners of the globe (quite literally!), and it’s a good feeling to be able to look at the final list and be satisfied that the works I’ve chosen are an accurate reflection of my views towards the art of horror writing, as well as damn good pieces in their own right. Will you enjoy them? It is to be hoped. But for now, I can move on to the second-stage editorial work— writing the editorial, shaping and editing submissions, discussing art and contracts with the appropriate AHWA Kahunas— and start to mold the final shape of the issue.
Stay tuned, and as soon as I get the all-clear from Midnight Echo Big Banana Marty Young I’ll give you the final Table of Contents.
A QUICK GLANCE INTO A NEARBY BUCKET
With the time-intensive scutwork of submissions editing out of the way, I can finally indulge myself once more with thoughts of my own work. The Battersby Art machine has been quiet of late, and there’s a lot of product to be fed into the business end. To whit:
- 2 novels need editing: Napoleone’s Land and Corpse-Rat King
- 3 stories are currently away in the world, and I have 2 more, The Possession of Mister Snopes and C to finish and send. The goal is to have completed and sent 15 by the end of the year, 12 from the partially completed work I have on hand, and 3 completely new pieces.
- 3 poems: Hart Crane, Treading Water; Wish Fulfillment; and Like A Leaf Falling need final polishes and sending out
- 3 cartoons are finished, I’ve 2 more that have been inked but not shaded, and I need at least 1 more completed after that to constitute a complete batch. The goal is to have 24 (or at least 4 batches) in circulation by the end of the year.
- And I promised myself that I’d complete a new novel by the end of the year, so I really need to get started on that as well. Still, on this score at least, you may be pleased by the following…..
SO IT BEGINS….
It began in a dream.
It has taken me a million years to leave my father’s embrace, and now I am falling. I am supposed to fall forever. I am never to touch the ground again.
Eight minutes after my fall commences, I start to burn.
Those are the opening words of the Father Muerte novel.
A QUICK WORD ABOUT PEOPLE TALLER THAN ME
He likes his privacy, so at his request I don’t make mention of him too much on this blog, but I’m breaking that rule because Aiden turned 17 a couple of days ago, and you need to know just how proud I am of the young man he’s become.
I simply couldn’t wish for a more intelligent, funnier, more capable, caring (as anyone who’s seen him with Connor can testify) and just generally excellent Bonus Son, and I’m excited by the thought of what’s coming to him in the years ahead as he navigates his final year of high school and heads on to University and the world beyond.
As soon as he acknowledges that System of a Down suck the devil’s dangly bits he’ll be perfect…..