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Improbability is in the Details
Abra Staffin-Wiebe's Journal
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26th-Aug-2018 12:23 pm - Cassius, Age 7
I try to take Sundays off of social media, but it has occurred to me that what I really mean by that is "fast" social media, the constant churn. So perhaps Sunday is the right day to take 5 minutes to type a longer post. And there is one such post that ought to be done!

Cassius recently turned 7. Seven!! How is this possible?!? He starts 2nd grade tomorrow, and he's very excited to go back and see his school friends again. He says that he's met the teacher one time before. He seemed comfortable with her at the school open house, so that's great. This year he is no longer in Early Childhood Special Education, so he won't be getting the same kind of assistance and interventions. Fingers crossed that everything goes well! He seems ready. His fine motor strength has improved a lot, and if he's still a little socially awkward, well, who among us isn't?

At age 7, Cassius is full of thoughts and full of chatter. He finds it exceptionally difficult to stop talking unless he's reading a book. His reading has really taken off in the last few months. He's reading chapter books on his own, and loving it. He particularly likes nonfiction, whether it's about dinosaurs or the pyramids or inventions or engineering.

When he grows up, he wants to be a scientist or an engineer or an architect. He thinks maybe a toy engineer, although recently he's also discussed game design as something he's interested in.

He is very happy that we have recently acquired a dog. A Dog Called Hawk is a one-year-old, 60 lb, black lab with all the energy and self-control of a puppy.

Cassius loves playing Pokemon, whether it's Pokemon Go (anybody want to be friends?) or the card game. He also likes reading all about the Pokemon. He has recently started watching Lolirock, which I can only describe as magical girl rock star anime. He really likes shows in that kind of genre. He's started tackling a half-size Rubik's cube. He really enjoys building Lego kits.

Cassius is very sensitive and concerned about other people's feelings. He has fears about losing his parents/family in a crowd, and about being left behind. He is 100% lawful-good. He is extremely concerned about following the rules and making sure others do the same. He does not like scary movies (unlike his younger sister) even if things turn out okay.

Challenges: when he gets upset, he tends to run away from us if we are out and about (like in a grocery store or at the mall), which isn't safe and which we are working on. He'll also sometimes just refuse to walk. Apparently nonviolence resistance techniques are genetic. Who knew? He and his sister love each other (they missed each other so much on the recent son-daddy trip to Wisconsin) very much, but they also tussle constantly and do things deliberately to tick each other off. But they hate being separated. Oof.

Brother and sister reunited Originally posted at https://cloudscudding.dreamwidth.org/1127550.html on Dreamwidth.org.


The next update of Aswiebe's Market List will be after 9/15/2018.
Permanent link to this newsletter in the archives: http://www.aswiebe.com/writing/archive2018.html#081518

Thoughts in Passing
Oops! I've had so much on my plate lately that I completely blanked on the last Aswiebe's Market List update, so this is a double shot.

What I've been up to lately, writing-wise:
 
My little epic fantasy novella is out in the world! The Unkindness of Ravens is an epic fantasy story about trickster gods and favors owed. Initial reviews on Goodreads are very positive. Yay! Go read the long excerpt on my website.
 
Things Shiny or Useful
Archive of all shiny or useful links: http://www.aswiebe.com/writing/shiny.html  

Plot Structure: How to Shape an Intriguing Plot: https://www.nownovel.com/blog/novel-plot-structure-intrigue/

25 Ways to Plot, Plan, and Prep Your Story: http://terribleminds.com/ramble/2011/09/14/25-ways-to-plot-plan-and-prep-your-story/


Featured Market
 
The End of Our World anthology is seeking thoughtful SF themed to climate catastrophe and end of the world. Due 8/31/2018!
 
Contemporary warnings of impending doom, the rapidly approaching end of our overdeveloped and unsustainable world, are based on reality and science, on cold, hard facts, matters of projection rather than prediction. And we are already seeing the end beginning. The signs are everywhere: environmentally and socially (check our fact sheet for details). We are going down, and most of us know, perhaps not consciously, not clearly spelled out, but we know, deep inside, that we are going down, in spite of all the comforting lies told by those who are profiting from our downfall and want us to go meekly.

This contest is meant to raise people's awareness of what is happening to our (natural) world right now and what this may mean for the near future. We are looking for short stories dealing with the many existential issues facing us. No nonsense, no wild, impossible fantasies but strong, intelligent stories, based on facts, cautionary tales, speculative, plausible and thought-provoking.
 
Basics: themed science fiction, 1,500-3,000 words, reprints okay, $1,000 prize. Due 8/31/2018. Guidelines: http://www.aftermathmag.org/contest.html.
Originally posted at https://cloudscudding.dreamwidth.org/1127228.html on Dreamwidth.org.

Thoughts in Passing
I am deep in the pre-production for my epic fantasy novella, The Unkindness of Ravens. During my final grammar-and-typos copyedit, my proudest moment was spotting the extra space hiding at the beginning of a paragraph. 😆 Want to know what gave me the most trouble? Figuring out the grammatically correct use of articles with a term I made up myself (turns out it's complicated).

Ah, writers. We do it to ourselves.
 
What I've been up to lately, writing-wise:
 
See above. I have a novella coming out soon! July 17th! Soon, The Unkindness of Ravens will be available in print for pre-order. The ebook is already available for pre-order on non-Amazon sites, with a special low pre-order price (Kindle coming soon).

I'm also going to two local writing conventions in the next month. I'm at 4th Street Fantasy, June 22 - June 24th (I'm there now!). And I'm at CONvergence July 5 - July 8. I'll be doing a reading (with donuts if they're allowed in the room) first thing in the morning on Friday! That same day I'll be on these panels: Kids Ask a Writer, Keeping Creatively Energized, and Next Big Monster. On Saturday, I'm part of the group book signing (look for my origami tree) and the Writing Violence in Violent Times panel.
 
Things Shiny or Useful
Archive of all shiny or useful links: http://www.aswiebe.com/writing/shiny.html  

A Mid-Year Prep Talk to Rejuvenate Your Writing Resolutions: http://www.ingramspark.com/blog/a-mid-year-pep-talk-to-rejuvenate-your-writing-resolutions

Featured Market
 
Sins and Other Worlds is a reprint dark SF anthology by Shacklebound Books.
 
All submissions must be science fiction in nature. Any sub-genre is acceptable, but the stories must have have a science fiction element and must be dark in tone or atmosphere.
 
Basics: dark science fiction, reprints ONLY, 1,500 words or fewer, pays at least $.01/word (maybe more depending on Kickstarter). Due until filled. Guidelines: https://shackleboundbooks.wordpress.com/submissions/.
 
For the rest of the market updates, go to http://www.aswiebe.com/writing/markets.html
Originally posted at https://cloudscudding.dreamwidth.org/1127095.html on Dreamwidth.org.
18th-May-2018 09:53 am - New Market List Update!
New Aswiebe's Market List update!

I talk about feeling stressed and miserable and realizing that a lot of the reason why is that ... I haven't been writing.

Also, the Punk Rock Future anthology wants punk rock science fiction, fantasy, and horror, pays pro rates. All the details and more: http://www.aswiebe.com/writing/markets.html

Originally posted at https://cloudscudding.dreamwidth.org/1126478.html on Dreamwidth.org.
29th-Apr-2018 04:28 pm - Fun read
Delightful, sweet, horrifying, and filled with excellent advice for relationships and families: Toni Curtis' "Upon Your Marriage to a Redcap" at Iridium Magazine.

https://iridiumzine.com/2018/03/23/upon-your-marriage-to-a-redcap/

Story: "Upon Your Marriage to a Redcap" by Toni Curtis.
Genre: Contemporary fantasy.
Published: April 2018, Iridium Magazine
Length: Quite short short story.
How I found it: While checking to see if my story was up yet (it was not).

Originally posted at https://cloudscudding.dreamwidth.org/1126134.html on Dreamwidth.org.
17th-Apr-2018 08:12 pm - New Market List Update!

FearBot3000 wants you to know that the The Working Zealot's Guide to Gaining Capital in Pre-Apocalyptic America will pay you monies for your weird capitalist stories.

All the new market list updates:
http://www.aswiebe.com/writing/markets.html

Originally posted at https://cloudscudding.dreamwidth.org/1125646.html on Dreamwidth.org.
17th-Mar-2018 12:58 pm - New Market List Update!
New Aswiebe's Market List update! Unidentified Funny Objects 7 will pay you $.10/word for your funny SFF. But wait, there's more!

Originally posted at https://cloudscudding.dreamwidth.org/1125404.html on Dreamwidth.org.
18th-Feb-2018 11:42 am - All the updates fit to be printed in!
New market list update! Learn all about the ultimate ham sandwich anthology, plus more: http://www.aswiebe.com/writing/markets.html Originally posted at https://cloudscudding.dreamwidth.org/1125145.html on Dreamwidth.org.
Great technology thriller (think Crichton) with steadily escalating stakes as the main character goes deeper and deeper into the conspiracy. One of my favorite things about this book is the way it introduces us to a huge cast of minor characters and makes each one of them come to life, if only briefly. This is a big fat book, but it reads fast. I haven't read Dean Koontz in ages and ages, and I'm glad I picked the book up.

Story: The Silent Corner by Dean Koontz
Genre: I think it's being sold as a thriller? It's got one significant creepy SF element, too.
Published: June 2017, Bantam
Length: Really long novel.
How I got it: Library
Writer notes: Seriously, self, go back and look at how he wrote minor characters like that. With the PoV and such.
Biases: I'm a fan of the Parasol Universe, and I'm fine with M/M romances.


Originally posted at https://cloudscudding.dreamwidth.org/1125049.html on Dreamwidth.org.
18th-Jan-2018 05:45 pm - Pie Charts of the Dead!
It's 2018! Which SF/F publications didn't make it? The new update of Aswiebe's Market List has it all. Lists! Tables! Pie charts! (No, really, I have pie charts.)

Pie Chart of Surviving Publications
 

See?


Originally posted at https://cloudscudding.dreamwidth.org/1124839.html on Dreamwidth.org.
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