A wonderful recording of my story “Judgment of Swords and Souls” is now live at PodCastle. This story is set in the same world (“The Crescent Moon Kingdoms”) as my forthcoming novel THRONE OF THE CRESCENT MOON. Thanks to Stephanie Morris for a lovely reading!
Not technically the final version until we have type and design, but here’s Jason Chan’s cover painting for my forthcoming novel Throne of the Crescent Moon. I can’t even begin to explain how happy I am with it. February suddenly feels a lot closer!
I am pleased to announce that I am currently offering a limited number of one-on-one creative writing mentorships. These mentorships will be individually tailored to the needs of the client, involving a combination of detailed manuscript critique and advice on publication and professionalization. My areas of teaching expertise include poetry and fantasy fiction.
I hold an MFA in Creative Writing from Brooklyn College and an MA in English from Rutgers University. I’ve taught creative writing courses (including Basic Creative Writing, Poetry, and Fantasy Fiction) at the University level for over ten years. I also have extensive experience as a private online writing tutor.
I have been a finalist for the Nebula Award for Best Short Story, the Campbell Award for Best New Science Fiction or Fantasy Writer, and the Harper’s Pen Award for best Sword and Sorcery/Heroic Fantasy Short Story. My short fiction has appeared in magazines and podcasts including Strange Horizons, Orson Scott Card’s Intergalactic Medicine Show, Beneath Ceaseless Skies, Apex Magazine, StarShipSofa and PodCastle, and has been translated into Portuguese, Czech, Dutch, and Romanian. My fantasy novel THRONE OF THE CRESCENT MOON is forthcoming from DAW Books in March 2012, and I’ve already sold two sequels as well.
My poetry has earned fellowships from the University of Michigan, Brooklyn College, and the Bronx Council on the Arts, and has appeared in over a dozen journals and anthologies including Callaloo, The Brooklyn Review, Big City Lit, Inclined To Speak: An Anthology of Contemporary Arab American Poetry, and Abandon Automobile: Detroit City Poetry.
Mentorships are competitively priced and designed to be flexible. Possible projects include detailed critique and publication/representation strategy for poetry manuscripts, short stories, or novels. Before I begin working with a client I consult with them regarding their instruction/critique/advising needs and provide them with a clear, itemized plan of action and rate quote.
To inquire further, please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. I look forward to working with you!
I had a great time at Penguicon last weekend, hanging with a slew of cool Michigan/Ohio-based writers (and with geographical outlier Cat Rambo, who trekked over from Seattle!). Spent most of my time in the bar meeting and catching up with people, including SFWA’s Dear Leader John Scalzi and his wonderful wife Kristine, David and Tarri Klecha, Catherine Shaffer, Merrie Haskell, Anne Gray, Yanni Kuznia, and others.* That suited me fine, though I did manage to catch a couple of readings as well, including a fine story by Ferrett Steinmetz. I also did a reading of my own, the first chapter of THRONE OF THE CRESCENT MOON serving as a sort of spicy appetizer to a meaty main course of Jim C. Hines and his coveted box (don’t ask).
Finally, I took part in a podcast discussion (in front of an audience!) for the Hugo-nominated Writing Excuses, hosted by fantasy superstar Brandon Sanderson and awesome cartoonist Howard Tayler.** We discussed non-traditional settings setting in epic fantasy, and I enjoyed it quite a bit. Give ‘er a listen!
* I’m learning that “Who I hung with at the con” lists are anxiety-inducing. Inevitably I’ll forget someone and feel like a heel. Any omissions are due to my sleep-deprived, beer-soaked brain, not anyone else’s lack of memorable-ness.
** It’s also possible that I spent the weekend wearing a badge customized by Howard that said “I covet the career of Brandon Sanderson.”
Citizens of Intrawebistanopolis!
Most of my recent news has had to do with tax nightmares (boo!), sibling weddings (yay!), and sick children (boo!) – but here are a few bits of neat-o keen professional stuff:
- I am honored to be a finalist for the John W. Campbell Award for Best New Science Fiction or Fantasy Writer! I was a finalist last year as well, and this year the ballot looks even more impressive/intimidating. But the fact that, with only my goofy little short stories, I somehow managed to again get on a list where everyone else has multiple novels to their name – some of them New York Times Bestsellers! – makes me happy.
- My story “The Faithful Soldier, Prompted” is one of the storySouth Million Writers Award Notable Stories of 2010!
- For those keeping track of such things, I’ve locked down details of my readings at Penguicon (Sunday, May 1st 1pm Board Room) and WisCon (Saturday, May 28th 1pm Michelangelos (part of the ‘Great Lakes Graverobbers’ reading)). Hope to see some of y’all there!
- And speaking of cool-looking… I HAVE SEEN COVER SKETCHES FOR THRONE OF THE CRESCENT MOON!! And. They. Are. Awesome. Sadly, I can’t share until there’s a finished cover w/ color, type, etc. But think old school Star Wars poster crossed with the 1001 Nights. Jason Chan is the artist, and I’m very geeked with the direction he’s going. Also, peep the *amazing* handiwork of Priscilla Spencer, who will be making the map of the Crescent Moon Kingdoms.
Guys, I think this book is gonna be purty purty purty!
My “Muslim Unforgiven” fantasy story “Mister Hadj’s Sunset Ride” has now been podcast a second time, this time by the very capable Cheyenne Wright at the wonderful fantasy podcast site PodCastle. Go on over, sit a spell, and give ‘er a listen, pards!
Just a quick note to say that I will be making appearances at the following conventions this year. Details to follow:
- Penguicon (Troy, MI 4/29-5/1)
- Wiscon (Madison, WI 5/26-5/30)
- Worldcon/Renovation (Reno, NV 8/17-8/21)
And, for the record, it has always meant something profound to me that there was an Arab Transylvanian in RHPS.
End (sweet) transmission.
Gosh, a lot has happened since we last spoke. I could talk about happenings in the larger world – Japan, the Middle East, North Africa, Wisconsin. But there are people I’d rather you listen to on those and other ‘big’ topics.
I’m here to blab about my little slice of things. Since my last posting, my wife and twins and I have moved from Brooklyn, NYC to MI, my state of origin – to a Detroit suburb of 6,000 people that’s 95% white. A bit of a culture shock after 10+ years in New York,of course, but so far so more-or-less good. We’re near family and have about 3-4 times as much space as we had in our NYC apartment. We’re an 8 minute drive to a couple of ‘hip’ suburbs that have cafes, restaurants, etc., and 25 min drive from downtown Detroit. Plus Huntington Woods has a library and rec center in walking distance that’s quite impressive for such a small town, including a cool toddler room with hand puppets and old-school wooden toys and board books.
Writing-wise, a few bits of news:
- DAW now has a firm date for my debut novel THRONE OF THE CRESCENT MOON (March 2012)! Soon we start moves on cover art!
- The excellent new SF/F podcast SPECULATE conducted both a very thoughtful review of Apex Magazine’s Arab/Muslim issue from last year (including my story “The Faithful Soldier, Prompted”), and an interview with the always awesome Amal El-Mohtar and myself about the issue and our work. That was a lot of fun to listen to. (Also, did I ever mention that Geek Supreme Site io9 gave that story a shout out!?)
- CONS! So far the only for-sure this year is Penguicon. I’ll almost certainly be at Worldcon, though, very possibly at World Fantasy and *maybe* even at WisCon (word on that very soon).
- I’ll confess to being more anxious than I thought I’d be about the Campbell Award, voting for which (along with the Hugos) closes Saturday. I was a finalist last year, but have no idea how good my chances are this year. I want to nestle that tiara in my mane so bad it hurts, and I ain’t gonna lie, I’m sweating it.
- There are a couple of new podcasts and translations, and possibly a couple of other nifty projects which I can’t talk about yet, coming down the line. More soon!
All of this, though, is pretty much a prelude to more baby picspam. For, this week, Malcolm and Naima turn A YEAR OLD! It’s kind of bonkers to think that these guys:
are now THESE GUYS!!!
How in the hells does *that* work!?
Heya hey good people,
Long time no speak! Other than tweeting links and inanities, I’ve been pretty much dead to the world the past month or so. No site updates or LJ posts/comments. Obscenely (no, seriously, *obscenely*) behind on email/phone correspondence. To be quite honest, lately I’ve been – IRL and online – a bad friend. There are several reasons for this, none of which, sadly, is “I’ve been too busy writing.”
Besides a frantic end to the teaching semester and the usual holiday season crunch, the family and I have been dealing with a lot of upheavals, both small and large. There have been surgeries and illnesses – nothing too serious, thank God, but stressful/enervating stuff, to be sure. More dramatically, my wife and I have been making preparations – massively time-consuming preparations – for a major life change which I can now announce: In March we will be moving from Brooklyn to the Detroit area, where I grew up. Hayley’s received a wonderful job offer in Detroit, but the two biggest reasons for the move are family and money. Basically, for what our one-bedroom Brooklyn apartment is selling for, we can get a big ol’ gorgeous house with a yard and a garage and a furnished basement and alla that in a moderately hip small city outside Detroit. We can get full-time childcare for less than what we’re now paying for part-time childcare. And so on. What’s more, most of my family’s still in Michigan, so Malcolm and Naima will get to grow up around grandparents and aunts and uncles and cousins. And Hayley and I won’t feel quite so brutally alone in this insane undertaking called ‘raising twins.’
So the waking hours of my life that haven’t involved child care, teaching, time in doctor’s offices, etc., have been consumed by selling our apartment, scouting new digs in Michigan, lining up movers, trying to establish dayjobosity there, etc, etc.
And looming over all of it is this wee little thing called THE CRESCENT MOON KINGDOMS, BOOK TWO. But that’s a whole other post…
In other news, it would seem we’ve hit award nomination season in the land of SF/F-dom. Lotsa folks bringing their award-eligible stuff to nominators’ attention, so I suppose I shall toss my own hat into the Ring of Gauche (I’m a left-handed Far Lefty, after all!): While I published several stories in 2010, I am asking those so inclined to nominate my weird western “Mister Hadj’s Sunset Ride” in the Nebula and/or Hugo Short Story categories. Of course, I haven’t a chance in hell of winning in either of those categories. So what I’m REALLY hoping for is to win the Campbell award for Best New Writer (I was a finalist last year but lost quite deservedly to the hard-working and ass-kicking Seanan McGuire). The Campbell is technically not a Hugo, but one votes for it along with the Hugos. Any support y’all might offer my vainglorious quest is, of course, appreciated…
Of course, neglecting LJ, et al, also means that I’m woefully out of the loop with other folks’ doings. So…what’s the haps on *your* end?
Hi All! Taking a break from Thanksgiving Family Maaaaadnessss to mention that my second article for video game magazine The Escapist is now online. It’s an essay on underutilized historical settings — largely drawn from recent F/SF novels — that would make great backdrops for video games. Hope you enjoy it!