In Which I Edit Things

5 Oct

I have no idea where September went. I am hoping to relax a bit in October, since it’s my favorite (obviously!) and at least recall what I did with some of it. I’ll let you know how that goes.

I keep meaning to go on and on about nerdy stuff some more, but more important things have happened int he last week. For one, the table of contents for FISH — in abc order, not actual order, obviously — exists! It’s here, and it’s beautiful.

I had an incredible time reading for this one. I love reading RPP stuff, obviously, because I set RPP up to run exactly the kind of short fiction I find most fun. But FISH was different and special in that it was on a particular theme, and I went into it with a certain shape and feeling in my head — which is the opposite of how I do RPP, where I let the stories dictate the shape. Carrie’s idea was that she wanted to do a book for her son, whom I adore utterly, and when she said that I just got this feeling. So I read about half the subs before I went on vacation, and then I read the other half sitting in a B&B on Lake Superior — which felt awfully appropriate.

Now, it was a bit of a trial after a full day of reading magic fish stories to go downstairs and socialize with the other wedding guests, as that evening was the cocktail reception. But a few stiff drinks and I made my way to being vaguely human again. Just, there were little fish swimming before my eyes the whole time.

But why should today be any different? as Tevye says.

So all I’m trying to say is that the whole thing has taken on a real life of its own, and the stories in that link map it out beautifully. So much talent and magic. I think y’all are really going to like it.

And… there’s my personal fish story.


Two other projects that concern me in an editorial capacity are with Morrigan Books. One is, of course, ISHTAR, which is a trio of novellas from Kaaron Warren, Deborah Biancotti, and Cat Sparks focusing on the life, loves, and wars of the goddess Ishtar. Who, for the record, is a total BAMF. (Details on the Gilgamesh Press site.) I’m co-editing this one with Amanda Pillar, who was my first ever editor in VOICES some years ago, and has since become one of my favorite people to work with.

I can hardly believe I’ve got the opportunity to work with these three fabulous authors. Safe to say Amanda and I had a good time with it.

Amanda’s doing her thesis in archaeology right now, and has a good deal of specialty in the Near East — as we eurocentric sorts like to call it. Her knowledge of the Assyrian pantheon and culture, from an ancient standpoint, is fabulous. Gilgamesh Press in general is a celebration of Assyrian culture — and frankly, with a couple of anglo chicks running the project, we’re on heavy guard for misrepresentation and appropriation. Amanda’s academic background is indispensible.

For myself, I’ve got a good deal of goddess experience, though my own academic background is South Asian/Himalayan. You can take the wider stance and say that The Goddess is everywhere, which I suppose wouldn’t be wrong — but in a more immediate sense, generalizations like that are an invitation to tread thoughtlessly. But there are certain aspects of goddess worship and behavior that are very familiar to me — protection/vengeance and creating/destroying dichotomies, sacred space, etc, and Ishtar… yeah. Love and war, baby. Love and war. Plus, once upon a time I was a stringent art historian, and so spending days rifling through an Assyrian dictionary finding proper Akkadian and Sumerian terms for things is my idea of a good time.

Don’t worry though, it’s not at all academic, though much of my part in it was. The three stories of Ishtar, past, present, and future, are pure love and war, life and death, destruction and creation.  That’s coming in November, and I cannot wait to get it into my hands.

I’m less directly involved with the second project I wanted to mention: Carole Lanham‘s THE WHISPER JAR. The second this hit my inbox last year, on high recommendation from editor Kari Wolfe, I was in love. I got to read the final version as a proofer recently, and… my god. It’s beautiful and creepy and magical. Lanham has such an individual way with her magic, too — one of those authors you’re sure you’d recognize in a crowd, and those are rare. The book has just gone up for pre-order, and will be available on Halloween. Zombies, fairies, vampires, and magic mints — in ways I’d certainly never imagined before.


Oh. That must be where September went! Well-spent, then I’d say!

So, do you think it’d be utterly insane to try and write two novels for Nano? Not that I’m thinking of such an insane thing, no no, just…

10 Responses to “In Which I Edit Things”

  1. Corinne October 5, 2011 at 4:07 pm #

    I’m still so excited about FISH. I have utter faith that you and Carrie will make it into something beautiful. I can’t wait to see what everyone else came up with!

    So, do you think it’d be utterly insane to try and write two novels for Nano? Not that I’m thinking of such an insane thing, no no, just…

    Of course you’d never consider such a thing! Never!

    … the scary thing is that you could pull it off, too.

    • Katey October 5, 2011 at 8:04 pm #

      Depending on how tragic the two books were, I might even survive it! But then, perhaps it’s not the best strategy, considering that it’s vampires and demons. Hmm.

      FISH will indeed be beautiful. Really, it already is — y’all saw to that. All we’ve got to do is arrange things!

  2. Reenie October 5, 2011 at 4:52 pm #

    So, do you think it’d be utterly insane to try and write two novels for Nano? Not that I’m thinking of such an insane thing, no no, just…

    If anyone can… yeah, seems like it’d be you. Insane is just another word for Crazy-awesome, after all.

    • Katey October 5, 2011 at 8:04 pm #

      Crazy-awesome!

      I’ll go with that. And may prove it to be ENTIRELY right, too. That is, if the books come out any good.

      Not that I’m decided yet. Just, it’s tempting. Very, very tempting.

  3. Anthony J. Rapino October 6, 2011 at 12:10 pm #

    Sounds like a heck of a good way to spend your September, if not howlingly fun, at least incredibly productive. Can’t wait to see the finished products (The Fish cover looks great).

    • Katey October 7, 2011 at 1:40 pm #

      Isn’t that gorgeous? Galen is so wonderful — and the girl on it was modeled after a picture of Carrie’s mum :D

  4. Meghan October 7, 2011 at 6:10 am #

    Just, there were little fish swimming before my eyes the whole time.
    The whole thing sounds utterly enchanting. But then, I’m sure that’s to be expected given the predilection for sea creatures that some folks have over here.

    Ishtar and The Whisper Jar sound awesome as well, and I will obviously have to find some sort of time to read these creatures.

    • Katey October 7, 2011 at 1:41 pm #

      Ahahaha yeah, I think I know someone who’s getting that book from me the moment it comes out…

      I think you’ll like the other two as well. Maybe you’ll just get them all for some random holiday, come to think of it. They’re all very, very Meghan.

      How utterly predictable of me :D

  5. Cate Gardner October 7, 2011 at 1:33 pm #

    FISH is one of my all time favourite themes and I’m looking forward to many a magical read.

    If anyone could write two novels during NaNo it’s you.

    • Katey October 7, 2011 at 1:41 pm #

      Your story is brilliant, by the way. Obviously!

      I am seriously considering writing two, just one after the other BAM. I don’t know…

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