“Sweet Dreams” charity anthology now available

A few weeks ago, via a book review blog site, I stumbled across a call for submissions for an anthology ebook to benefit a young woman with an inoperable brain tumor. I sent the editor my flash fiction piece “The Garden” as a reprint. It was accepted, and the anthology’s now available for purchase at Amazon:

Sweet Dreams (The Lyndsey Roughton Anthology)

The cover makes it look like a straight-out horror collection, but it’s actually a mix of horror, fantasy, and science fiction. I haven’t had the chance to read it yet, and I’m not familiar with any of the other contributors’ work — but some of the titles are definitely intriguing (especially the editor’s contribution “The Great Zombie Pot-Plant Love Thang”). XD

All of the stories were donated by their authors, and the proceeds are going toward making Lyndsey’s last days the best they can be.

To find out more about Lyndsey Roughton, see the editor’s blog post:

Free short story collection and other writing-related updates

I’m a bit behind on publication announcements, so let’s get caught up…

First, I’ve put together a sort of ‘sampler’ ebook called Six Impossible Things, made up of six of my short stories. The collection includes “Childish Things,” “Moon, June, Raccoon,” “Norma the Wal-Mart Greeter Meets the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse,” “Swear Not By the Moon,” “Drawn From Memory,” and “The Garden.” It’s available for free on Smashwords, where you can download it in Kindle format, EPUB, PDF, plain text… pretty much everything except semaphore and interpretive dance. (It’s also on Amazon, but the process of making a book free on Amazon has taken longer than expected, so at the moment the Amazon price is still 99 cents. It will eventually be free, permanently; it may just take a couple more weeks. I’ll make another announcement when the price finally changes.)

Six Impossible Things

Second, the issue of Black Static including my story “Horseman” is due out next month, and as a preview, check out the awesome illustration done for it by artist Rich Sampson. It’ll be in black and white in the actual magazine, but at least you can enjoy it here in all its glory. 🙂

Third, this month saw a really exciting acceptance for one of my stories — “The Bear with the Quantum Heart” was accepted to the online sf/f magazine Strange Horizons, tentatively slated to appear sometime around December. It’s a place I’ve dreamed of being published in for some time now, and tough to get into, so this was an especially satisfying ego boost. The story is about a state-of-the-art educational toy who grows up alongside the child he was bought for, and ends up having a much deeper relationship with her than either of them expected. Call it “Velveteen Rabbit” meets “A.I.,” I suppose. 🙂

As for writing new stuff, a lot of real-life issues have interfered with my writing time and energy over the past several weeks, but at this point I’m still planning on doing Camp NaNoWriMo again in August. Before that, though, I’m working on my next Smashwords/Kindle offering (a novella called “Signal”) and trying to get a short story together to submit to this quarter of the Writers of the Future contest before the deadline slips past me.

And, of course, I’ll try to update here more often so I’m not doing these long omnibus posts instead of sticking to one topic and keeping things short, the way all the blog-writing how-to blogs say you should. (Which is one of several reasons I consider this an online journal and not a real “blog.”) :p

By Sword and Star now available from Anthro Dreams

It’s official! My anthropomorphic fantasy novel By Sword and Star is now available from Anthro Dreams. More info and ordering links:


Many, many thanks to my editor Will Sanborn, book designer Jessie Tracer, and cover artist Sara Miles for all their hard work in getting this published.

The first four chapters can be read on my website.

And if you’re on Goodreads, so is the book. 🙂 I’m planning on doing two giveaways of free signed copies via Goodreads, so keep an eye out for those in the coming weeks.

I’ll have a lot more introspective stuff to say about all of this later on over the next couple days, but for the moment I’m still running around the Internet making announcements. 🙂 (Retweets, reposts, suggestions of possible review venues, and general signal boosting are all very much appreciated, since I have a rather limited marketing budget.)

Stopping in for a quick update…

Things have been busy lately, and updating the blog tends to get pushed to the bottom of the to-do list, but here are a few quick notes:

I’ve added another Anthro Dreams podcast to my website’s audio page. “Sweet Nothings” is a bit of slice-of-life furry flash fiction originally written in response to the writing prompt “the ice cream shop.” (While you’re there, you can also check out the holiday-themed fantasy piece “An Older World,” which I completely forgot to announce here when it first came out.)

Publication of By Sword and Star is moving along steadily; we’re waiting for print proofs now, and the first chapters of the novel will also appear in the Anthro Dreams podcast as a teaser. Unless there are any unforeseeable snags, it looks like it’ll be available next month. (I’m planning on taking pre-orders for signed copies starting soon; watch this space.)

The Odyssey online class I took this past month has wrapped up. It felt like it went by pretty fast, so it’s kind of hard to evaluate how much I learned from it when I’m still absorbing some of the info. (I was, of course, reminded that I still hate critique, much as I recognize it as a necessary evil… but somehow I expect that’s always going to be the case.) *shrug* At any rate, I can get focused now on coming up with a workable writing routine again and getting some momentum back that I lost over the last few months.

Finally, have a fun video. Bert knows what it’s like to live with a writer… XD

New story online: “Best of Breed”

My show name is Silver Willow, but he calls me Mina. The first two things I remember are my mother’s scent and his.

Mina’s feline charms win ribbons at the shows, but the titles she’s awarded mean nothing to her beyond pleasing her human handler. When he’s happy, so is she — until betrayal breaks her world open and leaves her questioning who she really is.

My short story “Best of Breed” appears in the first issue of Allasso, a new magazine of anthropomorphic art and literature from Pink Fox Publications that’s being published both online and in a print version. Volume 1, “Shame,” just went live on the first of this month, and “Best of Breed” was the winner of this issue’s Editor’s Choice awards both for best story and best overall piece — which is a bit ironic, given the setting of the story.

You can find the issue here:


(I should mention that “Best of Breed” does contain some mature themes and language, so I’d recommend it for older teens and up.)

As always, comments/discussion welcome, whether here, on the story’s page, or privately. 🙂

Now available on Smashwords – “Real Dragons Don’t Wear Sweaters”

Once upon a time (Tuesday before last), there lived a dragon. He was not the sort of dragon you are probably thinking of. He did have wings, and a long pointy tail with a long neck to match, and even little lumps where horns would be, just in front of his ears. Unfortunately, that was where his resemblance to most dragons ended, because he was roughly the same size as a Chihuahua, his wings were so tiny that the effect was downright comical, and he was the precise shade of pastel pink that lip gloss manufacturers would call Cotton Dandy and paint manufacturers would call Wistful Dream.

To top it all off, he was fuzzy. Holding him was like holding a warm, slightly squirmy peach.

He was not, as you may have already guessed, a wild dragon. Wild dragons were crimson or ebony or emerald. They were giant, scaly fire-breathers who lived in caves in dramatic-looking cliffs and slept on huge piles of gold. He lived in an apartment with his owner and slept in a little basket with a powder-blue cushion.

She called him Dinkums.

My novelette “Real Dragons Don’t Wear Sweaters” is now available via Smashwords, in every format they offer except plain text — meaning you can read it on your computer, your Kindle, your Palm thingie, your Nook doohickey, and all those other newfangled things they make for reading books these days. (In my day, we had to read books on paper! And sometimes it would even cut you! And that was the way it was, and we LIKED IT!)

Erm. Anyway. Check it out here:


(Once again, my thanks to S.E.T. for the awesome cover art!)

2010 acceptance list

As one final bit of closure for 2010, and also just as a backup to my personal files, a quick rundown of acceptances/publications for the year:

To the Anthro Dreams podcast in 2010, as reprints: “Moon, June, Raccoon”, “The Raccoon and the Sea-Maiden,” and “Cover of Darkness” and “Sideshow” (grouped together into one podcast). I highly recommend the podcast to those interested in anthropomorphic fiction.

To ROAR volume 3 (due out next month), published by Bad Dog Books, “Drawn From Memory.” One of the few short stories I completed last year, this one is a sweet romance between a young human woman and the suave tiger toon she idolized as a child. I’m really pleased with how the story turned out — and that this will be my debut in a Bad Dog Books publication, hopefully reaching new readers who haven’t come across my work yet.

To Different Worlds, Different Skins Volume 2, as reprints: “Swear Not By the Moon,” “A Winter’s Work,” “Transformation,” and “At the Bridge.” (I was also surprised and pleased to see that the cover art for this volume was based on “A Winter’s Work.”)

To Fearology 2: Beware All Animals Great and Small (publication date TBA), a contemporary dark fantasy piece called “Horseman,” about a horse breeder grieving his wife’s death, whose mare gives birth to a monstrosity.

And finally, “Swear Not By the Moon,” as a reprint, to the anthology Bewere the Night — table of contents here, and it can be preordered via Amazon.com here (due out in April).

All in all, not as bad as it could have been, given that 2010 was a year of personal/financial upheaval with my husband’s job situation, leading to not very many new stories being completed, and given that I had more trouble than usual getting responses back in reasonable amounts of time (maybe in part because I was submitting to brand-new markets just getting their first issues going). At any rate, now we work on 2011…