Thursday, December 10, 2020

New Paranormal Story Published!

I am happy to announce that my story "Footsteps on the Floor" is available for purchase in the December issue of parABnormal Magazine. This story is exciting for me because it was inspired by a moment that happened during my college years at SUNY Fredonia in New York. 

What spooky moments have you encountered in your lives? Have you ever wondered what might have happened? Have you ever wondered what those noises on the other side of the door were? Do they keep you up at night?

Wednesday, November 18, 2020

KNOW Theatre Playwright & Artists Festival 2020

The KNOW Theatre Playwrights & Artists Festival for 2020 will be produced virtually as staged-readings for two weekends, Nov 20-22 and 27-29. There are three pieces of art, each with a piece of music and two 15 minute one-acts inspired per piece of artwork. My play "Have You Ever Heard A Goldfinch Sing?" will be performed on Sunday the 22nd and 29th, both weekends at 8 pm.

The performances will be followed by a talkback session with the artist, writers, directors, and actors.

More information from the theatre itself here.

The virtual performances are free though the theatre, which closed it's last show on March 1st, will be taking donations for the run of the festival and I would love to see this group get some needed community support. If the arts have been a comfort to you at all during this pandemic, consider sending them a few dollars. You can follow the link to the theatre above to donate.

The performances are free but in order to receive the links to the Zoom you have to e-mail the theatre at and put Festival Reservation in the subject line.

I hope to see some of you there. 

Thursday, October 22, 2020

Honoring My Family History in Story

This is a photo of my 2x great-grandparents Hiram King Wicker and Emma Angeline Whitcher. I adore them. The genealogy work we have done shows them to have had fascinating lives, courting just after the civil war. They feel alive to me. 

My father and I have spent decades studying our family history and we have well over 1700 names of our known ancestors. It led me to develop a strong spiritual Ancestor practice as a means of honoring where I came from to better know who I am. And some of that shows itself in my work. 

[Don't be disheartened by my nutshell if you don't know your own ancestors or have a way of knowing them. I work with a lot of people who were adopted on ways of connecting to your line spiritually. You can still honor those who came before you without names. And you can honor a chosen line rather than blood. But I tangent away...]

Ancestors. Having so many of their names I wondered what I should do with them.

I created a catalogue of first names and surnames and I draw from them when I name characters in my stories. Sometimes it's a first name or a surname. Sometimes it's a main character or a small side character. 

It's my way of remembering of them, of pulling them into the present, however best appropriate to the story. There is always the ghost of my ancestors alive in my creations. Every time I finish a story I light a candle and thank the ancestors who inspired that name, for having had lived and continuing the line that ends in me, that I am alive to tell my stories.

Wednesday, October 21, 2020

Chosen for the KNOW Theatre Playwright Festival of 2020!

I received great news today and I am over the moon!

I am excited to announce that I am one of six winners of KNOW Theatre's 2020 Playwright Festival in Binghamton, NY. Each year the theatre chooses three pieces of art and writers craft a 15 minute play inspired by one of them. From that pool, two plays are chosen to be produced for each art piece.

In response to the pandemic and considering the safety of the local community, this year the productions will be performed virtually as stage readings. I am excited to see these new works!

One of my favorite things about this festival is the blind submission process, where the judges don't know anything about the writer and rate the submissions on their responses to the writing and other predetermined criteria. 

The festival will be running Friday, Saturday, and Sunday for two weekends, November 20-22 and 27-29. My play will run twice, once each weekend, on different evenings. I will post more when I know more specifics. 

Saturday, August 1, 2020

Another Rejection-Not-Rejection.

I got my second rejection that was decidedly not a rejection at all, but an acceptance letter today! And I was thrilled to receive it while isolating with my parents so I got to read it out to them.

Another story arrived to a magazine I have been trying to get into after they had filled the next issue but would I allow them to hold it until the December issue?

Yes. Yes I will. Thank you and please print my story.

The story I sent out was a supernatural story based on a real experience I had. I enjoyed exploring what-might-have-happened but I'm not sure my old college housemates will find my version comforting, lol.

I will post more information as I learn it.


Artists, keep making your art. I'll see you all on the other side of this pandemic. 

Monday, July 20, 2020

Writing in Pandemic Times

I'm not going to lie, writing while the death toll is rising and people are getting violent over being asked to wear masks is hard. My work normally leans towards dystopian themes but this reality we are living in is too close to the way the horror in my stories start. 

I'm a hermit by nature and almost five years into isolated recovery from a near-death trauma. I don't mind the isolation (so far). But I keep thinking the same thing over and over again...

Science fiction is meant to be a cautionary tale, not a blueprint.

So watching the world unfold in the manner in which so many writers before me predicted humans would respond is more than a little disheartening and saddening.

I am currently isolating with my parents for a month, in a lake town closed for the season. Local people are still coming to the closed beach. I have been down there among them, hunting for fossils and beach glass, the only person in a mask. I was the only person in a mask among people shouting and spitting and laughing and I felt like I was living one of my own stories (and quickly broke through the crowd to go off to a more isolated stretch of shore).

I came back to work on a submission deadline and found it too sad to use that real-time experience as seasoning. I'm a sensitive person. I can imagine a great deal. But my joy in dystopian work comes from writing stories I think are real-enough but would never actually happen. I enjoy the What-If scenario when it isn't likely to occur.

I'm still writing, but my creations are more magical and modern right now. How can we change the world now to not-become-that? That kind of thing is living in my heart. How can we better the world with our crafts? Look at the numbers in which the world is turning to the Arts for relief. How can we tell tales but deliver a thread of hope?

Artists, keep making your art.

We have no idea how long this will last or what else will be asked of us. The flu of 1918 lasted two years. I'm watching the people at the park here being so careless with each other's lives that I am certain we have to be prepared for a marathon, not a sprint. The pure science behind how long it would take to get a vaccine that works out into the population tells that even that will take time. 

[But in the meantime, for a start, if people stopped littering the ground with their disposable masks, that would be great. Masks that might have virus on them. It's just health protocol. And we need to cut the strings when we're done. I've already seen birds with legs caught in them.]

We are our own heroes thrust onto an unwanted quest. Only we know if we will rise to meet it. 

[I'm just going to plug masks one more time. I'm chuckling as I write that but it is startling after isolating in solitude for three months to find myself in a crowd of people who are talking about this virus like it's not a big deal and won't touch them. Wear a mask to curb the spread. I think we're going to see the numbers go back up again. The flu of 1918 saw an increase that first fall season.]

May we all see the other side of this virus. 

Friday, May 1, 2020

Story Rejected. Wait? Not Rejected?

I received the best rejection yet this morning. A new story was rejected from an anthology and it was a long and sweet note. Buried at the bottom of that rejection was a request to include the story in an anthology for next year that hasn't even been listed yet.

Yes! Take my story.

Maybe a smarter writer would shop it around but I am still looking for homes for my stories where they are wanted as I know my writing style is not mainstream (or so say most of my beta readers).

So next year I already know I will have a new story out. It gives a little glow to how 2020 is panning out.