Everything from:fiction fights back

The State Street Robot Factory

I have a new story up at Apex! “The State Street Robot Factory” was initially written as dystopic near-future science fiction, but between the time I first drafted it and the time it was published, at least three of the science fiction elements have become reality. The dystopia was real all along. The last few years have been an exercise in resilience for far too many of us. I’m proud of us for hanging in there and even finding joy sometimes, and at the same time I deeply wish this resilience wasn’t so required, and ache for the people who aren’t as resilient, who have crumpled under the immense weight of these times. Resilience is a fascinating trait to me. It’s a skill, yes, but the only way to develop it is to experience unexpected, painful and traumatic things, and I can’t wish that on anyone. What resilience I have came at a high price, as I think it always does. It is not a choice, either: it’s often simply the only way forward through darkness. This story is about a small business owner dealing with an unforgiving marketplace and a tough season; it’s also about the dystopia of a […]

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Happy birthday, Mary

I just got the paycheque for “We Are the Flower“, the story I wrote for you. This post is going up a day late because I didn’t hit the Publish button! But I know you would forgive me for that, as you and all my friends have forgiven me for never being a birthday-rememberer. Ever since 2016, when Spells of Blood and Kin was published and the US election exposed cultural progress as the frail thing it is, in need of constant action and support, I’ve been in the privileged position of being able to donate all of my short story income to causes I support. The #FictionFightsBack initiative kicked it off for me and I’ve kept up the habit. The arrival of this money in my account was particularly well timed, Mary, because it would have been your birthday, and we had a Zoom call with some of your dearest ones who confirmed to me that you would have loved to see this donation go to the Movement for Black Lives. So there it has gone. I miss you a lot. We used to joke that when you were away it was my job to be the weird one […]

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