Monday, July 30, 2012

Upcoming Short Stories and Anthologies

I just finished the copy edits for SHADES OF EARTH (at 3am last night) and you know what that means...ARCs soon! I cannot wait. I am still at the stage where it feels as if SoE might not quite be real. I sort of expect to wake up soon and find out that this was all a really vivid dream.

Anyway! While we all wait for ARCs and proof that I'm not hallucinating my whole writing career, I wanted to tell you guys about some other awesome projects I've been working on. Namely: anthologies!

Anthology Title: SHARDS AND ASHES
Edited by: Melissa Marr and Kelley Armstrong
Release date: February 19, 2013
Add it to your GoodReads here.

About my story: This YA dystopian anthology is going to be amazing, and I can't wait to read all the other stories in it! My contribution is titled "Love is a Choice," and is all about Orion before Elder was born. It describes what happened in those first few months after Eldest tried to kill him. It explains how he became the Recorder and in charge of the Recorder Hall. And it's also about a girl, and love, and the choices we make that divide us.

It was really difficult for me to write this story because it forced me to take a closer look at Orion. When I first came up with this character, in the very first draft of the very first book, he was a mustache-twirling crazy bad guy. He had no depth, and it was way obvious what his role in the book was. As I revised and rewrote ACROSS THE UNIVERSE, though, I found that the character who changed the most was Orion.

And I really started to sympathize with him. This was not something that I expected, and as I was writing the books, I was a little startled by how much I could myself in this character. After finishing A MILLION SUNS, I knew I wanted to do a short with Orion, so I could let other readers see how much I discovered about his character.

Anthology Title: DEFY THE DARK
Edited by: Saundra Mitchell
Release date: June 2013
Add to your GoodReads here.
Official anthology website here.
A little something extra extra: The last tale in this book is being reserved If you're an unpublished author, you're going to want to check back with the antho website and look at the competition with a prize of being published in the antho (and paid for your contribution)! More information on the contest here.

About my story: The title of my story is "Night Swimming"--in the antho, each story takes place at dark. Mine is about Kayleigh and Harley and the night Kayleigh died.

But the reason why I love my story in this antho extra much is because the narrator in the story is gender ambiguous. In my mind, it could be narrated by either Bartie (the man who started the rebellion in A MILLION SUNS) or by Victria (the woman who was in the Hospital with Harley). I leave it up to the reader to decide who's narrating the story. It's about betrayal and longing, whether you should stand up and fight or bow down and survive. It's about love, too, and what happens when the person you love doesn't love you back.

Anthology Title: AFTER
Edited by: Ellen Datlow and Terri Windling
Release date: October 2012
Add to your GoodReads here.
A little something extra extra: I'll be celebrating the release of this anthology--along with many of the other contributors--in New York at Books of Wonder! It will all go down October 11--hope to see you here! More info.

About my story: My contribution to this dystopian anthology is called "The Other Elder." It was the very first short story set on Godspeed that I wrote, and I love it extra special because of that.

But I also like it because it tells a little bit about Godspeed and how it came to be the dystopic dictatorship that Eldest controlled. "The Other Elder" describes how the society went from an Eldest who was retiring to the next Eldest, and the young Elder who was going to take over next. It explains what went wrong, and it shows the reader how Godspeed's society came to be.

Also? The narrator is a young Elder, one who thinks about fighting back, bucking the system. And because of the nature of the Eldest system, it could be the Eldest that you met in ACROSS THE UNIVERSE. It could be Orion. It could be neither of them. I leave that up to you.

As with most my stories and books, "The Other Elder" centers on a choice: whether it's worth it to give up freedom for peace.

Those are all the anthologies I've contributed to, and each story takes place in the world of ACROSS THE UNIVERSE and Godspeed. But I am working on two other things--there are at least two more stories that I'd like to share about Godspeed. One is about Luthor and what he was like before Amy woke up. The other is about Kayleigh, and what she discovered, and the night she died. I'm working on both of these stories right now, and hope I'll be able to share more with you about them soon!

PS: If you haven't voted for your favorite novels on the NPR List, please do so here! 
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