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Fresh Dirt Archives: Spring 2000

The newest and bestest thing is Miranda Claire Nicholson Owen, Sunshine Supergirl Girl of the World, the Softliest Monkey, sweet potato pumpkin pie, sponge princess, a.k.a. Goldbug. It's fun to fall in love all over again without breaking the heart of one's first love. She was born on January 26th and is cuter daily. Or maybe it's all part of the Cult of Cute.

I'm a guest at Stellarcon 19, an annual event held by the UNC-Greensboro science fiction club. I'll be there for Saturday, February 19th, with a reading/signing at 10 a.m., then two panel discussions on "Writing Horror" and "How To Sell Your Fiction." I'm moderating the panel I dreamed up called "Suspense and Imagination."

My story "The Way of All Flesh" will appear in the Australian magazine Altair, in issue #6 due out in August 2000. Altair is a glossy pro-quality publication that gets material from people like Arthur C. Clarke. I did a slight rewrite for editor Robert Stephenson, who requested that I turn up the horror factor at the end. Aw, shucks, you don't got to twist my arm to gets me more horrible! Happy to oblige.

My story "Scarecrow Boy" will appear as the feature story in Lore #10. Award-winning British fantasy artist Dave Carson will illustrate the story as the cover piece. I have been "illustrated" three times, and each time it's a special honor to have another creative mind to look into the tangled mess inside my skull.

My story "Haunted" will be reprinted on-line at Electric Wine in March 2000. The story was First Runner-Up for the 1999 Darrell Award and received an Honorable Mention in the last Year's Best Fantasy & Horror. My story "Constitution" will reappear in the Australian magazine Winedark Sea, and will also make a limited appearance at their website. Publication date is April 2000.

I'm a longshot candidate for the John W. Campbell Award for best new writer. Those attending last year's and this year's WorldCon are eligible to vote to determine the final ballot. This year's attendees will vote for both the Hugos and Campbell award. If you're attending please consider me as a charity case if nothing else. Most of the eligible writers are listed at the Campbell Award site.

Sharyn McCrumb gave me a cover blurb for my forthcoming collection Thank You For The Flowers: "...he has entered that literary shadow land between Neil Gaiman and Ray Bradbury. Send out the Welcome Wagon!" She told me she even read my baseball story, which was a rare feat. Her favorite was "In The Heart Of November," which will appear in Tundra Books' young adult anthology Be Afraid!

I'm doing a series of book signings for Writers of the Future Vol. XV over the next two months. Dates and locations will be listed here when they are finalized. THE RED CHURCH made its first trip to a publisher last week. Fingers crossed, breath held, and razors poised at wrists. Queries for CREEP are now making the round of agents. I'm also developing two children's books with an artistic co-worker.

In my rewrite of CALLING IN THE FIRE, I realized how much I've learned about storytelling since that "final draft" was finished a year-and-a-half ago. (Still a long way to travel, though.) I've taken the first six chapters, put them in the blender, and honed them down to three taut chapters, with some few good bits left over. I've sketched the first two scenes of the screenplay, which will fairly closely follow the book.

A new novel is currently forming itself from the inner ethers. Look out...

Sign up for the Scottstuff newsletter and be eligible to win an autographed copy of Douglas Clegg's Nightmare Chronicles. Clegg will also be featured in an interview in the next newsletter.

-- copyright 2000 by Scott Nicholson

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