all-but-final table of contents for My Wandering Uterus, the collection of travel writing by women that Byron and I were foolish enough to brainstorm together — joking! I suppose this is the nearest I will come to that feeling of a baby being overdue (at this rate, I fear it will be coming out smoking a cigar and demanding a martini). But the end is in sight!
We have poetry, memoir, travelogue, fiction, humour, and more from very different women who inhabit all walks of life — even a mother and daughter! I’m grateful to them all for trusting us with their tales.
There are one or two details to firm up [contributors! please correct any errors you see in your title, name or punctuation] but here we go:
A Journey Charm — K. A. Laity (translation from medieval English)
Foreword — H. Byron Ballard
Accidental Openings — Carolyn Coulson
Wearing the Shalwar Kameez — Dawn Reno Langley
Once Upon a Time in Mexico — Catherine Lundoff
Poems — Devon Balwit
In the Course of a Pilgrimage — Tahni J. Nikitins
The Five Dollar Car — Diane Payne
The Threshold of the Sheela — Amy J. Rio
Mexican Getaway — Tonja LH Vernazza
In Search of Sorrow — G. Clark Hellery
Freedom of Voice — Jessica Marie Baumgartner
How Could I Disappear? — Sandi Hoover
The Week I was Jodie Foster — Leanne Breiholz
The Time I Went to Malta — Holli Shan
Sally Lunn — H. Byron Ballard
Good Fortune — Ellen J. Perry
Five Poems — Miriam Sagan
From Warrior to Chaplain: Giving the Middle Finger to the Patriarchy — Tiffany Andes
Notes from Barakhamba — Kate Telma
Pilgrimages — Ginger Strivelli
Chasing Shadows — Tammy Conrad
Motosexual & Trains of Thought — Shannon McRae
Five Days in Sydney: Remembering Judy Garland — Joan Coulson
Journal of Drive Therapy — Clara Vann-Patterson
Get Miles — Susannah Blanchard
My Uterus Did Not Wander — Tamara Miles
Never Look at their Faces and Other Unwritten Rules — Sonya M. Hamrick
Traveling the Crow Road with My Daughter — Sheri Barker
Freedom to Move About the Cabin — Angela Kunschmann
The Anniversary Train — Catherine Nurmepuu
The Beauty of Language and the Inadequacies of Standard Dictionaries — Ellen Sandberg
My Wandering Freedom — Lisa Wagoner
Walking Veiled through Khan el Kalili — Cynthia Talbot
Hotel Sheets — Victoria Squid
Across the Cerulean Sea: Woman on Water? — MJ Toswell
For those not on the ‘book, you can still see my interview with Chris Roy at Scream Hard Reviews here. I may be giving too much away with that picture of the outline of Madonna of the Wasps in my notebook, but I trust my handwriting is so bad that it’s pretty much indecipherable. 😉 (Also note Stephanie’s SpeakEasy design mug, Karen Jolly’s Anglo-Saxon charms book, Heyer’s Arabella, and the eyes of Hello Kitty).
Also The Blood Red Experiment has gained a few reviews, including a nice one here.
Over on the Fox Spirit Books blog I get to kick off Women of Horror month with a piece on The Haunting of Hill House, one of the finest novels ever written. Go read it (my piece and the novel).
I have a piece ‘The Three Rs’ over at 3AM Magazine. I had written for another thing that fell apart but it suited as a kind of encomium for Mark E. Smith. More to come doubtless as there are many things floating around in my head.
Chapter 4 of Madonna of the Wasps is out: chapter 5 at the end of the month. If you want to have a print copy, I have good news coming soon.
UPDATE: I am always forgetting to share my History Witch posts: most recently Sounding Out the Water Elf (another bit in my thinking about the sound of charms which I’ll be talking about at the Harvard conference in April).
NEXT WEEK: The SpeakEasy dames and I will be guest hosts at Ione’s Annual Dream Festival next week. If you’re on Facebook, join us talking and thinking about dreams and how they affect our waking lives. Some of the posts will be here as well. Starts on Monday!
‘Twice Reviled: Medieval Fact & Fantasy.’ Out of the Cloister: Lone Medievalists Making the Middle Ages Matter: forthcoming piece on what it’s like to be the lone medievalist in a department as well as a fiction writing-lit prof (hint: even people in academia like you to stick to one category or the other).
“The Unlikely Milliner & The Magician of Threadneedle-Street.” Mythlore: A Journal of J.R.R. Tolkien, C.S. Lewis, Charles Williams, and Mythopoeic Literature: forthcoming essay on the use of tarot in Susanna Clarke’s Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell — yes, yet another piece on that book so I suspect I may well end up writing a book about it.
Travel: after a break of [cough] years, I’ll be heading to Kalamazoo for the annual Medieval Congress. Looking forward to my first paper on Rauf Coilyear, one of my new obsessions. I feel a little sad because I think the last time I was at the ‘Zoo was when I got to hang out with Kathryn Fernquist Hinds, who died suddenly this week. Her husband Arthur has asked those honouring her memory to make donations in her name to Planned Parenthood or the ACLU. You might also want to read her books.
I hope to go to MAMO as well: this year it will be in Rome. We shall see. Finances always questionable — and of course, I need to get accepted! But a scheme afoot to catch up with Alexandra Bava naturally and Dan Curley who I think might be there as well in November.
[Fill in the elventy thousand things I have forgotten to mention or haven’t finished]
Oh, and I have more Edinburgh pictures to share: must remember to do so!
It’s Women in Horror month so apropos that the penultimate part of my neo-giallo Madonna of the Wasps has just come out — the final part will wrap up this auspicious month.
Murder, mayhem, ancient rites and a legendary prima ballerina all fit together somehow in the homage to Dario Argento, Mario Bava and of course, Robyn Hitchcock.
Check out the interview & review with Mark Cooper, whose serial “Quanam In Illis” appears in The Blood Red Experiment, too.
Here’s my year-end wrap-up, mostly so I don’t skate over accomplishments: it’s easy to feel like you haven’t done much when you don’t keep track. Of course there are things not on this list because they haven’t come out yet (Hire Idiots, Mangled, My Wandering Uterus) or because they don’t have tangible results (e.g. application for full professor, submissions to various things). But there is more than I thought:
Respectable Horror Fox Spirit Books, 2017.
“Madonna of the Wasps: Ch 3 – Swan.” The Blood Red Experiment vol 3, 31 Dec 2017.
“Do Anything You Wanna Do.” Spelk: 29 Dec 2017.
“Madonna of the Wasps: Ch 2 – Frost.” The Blood Red Experiment vol 2, 30 Nov 2017.
“Madonna of the Wasps: Ch 1 – Love.” The Blood Red Experiment vol 1, 31 Oct 2017.
“Spirits in the Night.” Short story. Spelk Fiction, 2 Jun 2017.
“Copped It.” A Twist of Noir. 27 Mar 2017.
“Repetition.” Short story. Spelk Fiction, 20 Feb 2017.
“These Toys are for Tough Boys.” Featured short story. Alibi-Fest.com, 5 Feb 2017.
“Chaucer and the Art of the Grift.” Empty Mirror 24 Nov 2017.
“Midwesterner in Exile.” Mystery Readers Journal 33.1 (Spring 2017): 51-2.
History Witch for Witches & Pagans:
What’s ahead in 2018? More of everything! I have many plans, of course. Not all of them are writing either. One cool thing I should mention: The SpeakEasy dames are happy to announce we’ll be curators for one week [Monday, February 6 – Sunday, February 11] of Ione’s Annual Dream Festival (23rd Annual). Go like their page to get in on the exploration of imagination.
Dream big! Chase that muse wherever it leads you —
Yes, one last story published in 2017. It’s the latest issue of The Blood Red Experiment that includes the third chapter of my neo-giallo ‘The Madonna of the Wasps‘.
In the third chapter we learn who the mysterious ‘Swan’ is: who can inspire such a blood-thirsty cult?