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Strong Coffee –  On Halloween in 1923, a once skeptical professor is forced to seek out a medium to resolve a haunting in her New York townhouse. (4,100 words, murder, supernatural)

Boxcutter –  There are monsters out in the desert. Nathaniel finds work in the city, killing them before they’re born, but came from the desert too. (3,300 words, dystopian horror, serial murder, monsters)

Double –  After an accident in a test run of a new cloning scanner, a lab assistant ends up living with her clone. A short story about self-love and self-harm. (5,600 words, a reflective story about having sex with your clone; no happy ending)

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It turns out my hosting site may be renewed again after all. I've already moved everything to Wordpress.com, though, so I think I'll stick with it.

Despite having worked at the Genie novel enough that it now has some shape and substance to the plot, instead of writing it I seem to have started a completely different novel. it's tempting to be now because the plot is more straightforward, leaving more room for introspection, and it gives me whole new characters to play around with. I even came up with a title already. Oh dear.

If completed, I'd probably submit it to Bella Books. This is a reflection both of my fondness for Bella Books - despite the hit and miss quality of their output, an all-lesbian-works-incl-genre-subjects publisher is endearing to me - and my lack of self-confidence. They seem the most likely publisher I know of to publish a first novel that's a straight-up lesbian romance without even any sex in it.


I'm SO fond of my new characters, even though some of them still need fleshing out. Can't wait to see how they'll contradict me.
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I'm well on my way to finishing a 350-page book on New York's urban culture fin de siècle to WWII, ordered another one from Amazon, and on the lookout for one about the lesbian subculture of the same era. I've also read two issues of Brooklyn Brevities from Archive.org from 1922 and 1923 - each was a revelation of its own kind.

What I'd really love to find is some kind of a 3D tour of the city circa 1920-1925 for my potential NaNoWriMo novel, or of the locations I particularly want to use: The House of Mercy, the NYC jail on Welfare Island, the Hamilton Lodge, the Village. I may have to just imagine it instead.

I do at least need to find a good 2D map and to nail down the location of my heroines' home and the nature of the café they live above, and the background of Genie, how her ambiguous racial background would factor in. I'm thinking she presents as a White European when meeting clients, and is fully identified as a Black American when among her friends, but then what about her family? I'd originally conceived of her as coming from a White middle-class family, but am I making things too complicated? Hmm. I do want her to have a foot in both worlds, so to speak.

I've added several more "seeds" to my plan while reading this book. I realize I can't include every "seed", only the ones that actually come together with some coherence. I'm also starting to get cold feet about one of the central secrets I originally thought up, since it would involve touching on the gender conceptualization of the era, not to mention the still radical idea of children's gender, which is seen as an issue of children's sexuality - an enormous taboo.

Sometimes I worry that if I write one story about the watersports kink and comment on one poem about piss, I'm going to come off as having that kink or overly associated with it. In the same way, I'm now worrying that since I've written one short story protagonist who apart from being a serial killer also sexualizes children, I can't write another one where the possibility of pedophilia is floated as a false lead. Oh dear. I might do anyway, since it emerges logically from the circumstances I've cobbled together, though I have zero interest in writing about actual pedophilia.

I'm already thinking of using some of these seeds and locations for the sequel. Steady on, girl!

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