It’s Been One Hell Of A Year…

…and it’s not even half over.

It’s extra hard to figure out how best to say what I want to say, given all that’s going on in the world, so here goes. I’ll try to keep this to the point.

I’m lucky enough to be in a country that prepared for the pandemic and managed its response to a world class – by some reports, first in the world – standard. We’re re-opening, after weathering the storm with just over a hundred cases and eight deeply mourned citizen deaths. I’m on half pay, expecting government funds shortly, and working from home for now as I obey a stay at home request from my government.

No country is safe from this virus, however, so we remain on guard as we begin to cautiously allow the return of foreign based citizens. If you’re hunkering down, or working through this as an essential employee, I wish you health, safety and good governance that will do what’s best for your citizens lives and the future of your country.

As a black mixed race person, watching the BLM movement go global has been electrifying, validating and heartbreaking. That it took yet another black man’s death to do so is the horrific price black lives keep paying. To see the racists come out of the woodwork in my own multi-cultural country has been infuriating, but edifying. Thank you for outing yourselves. Hope you enjoy your consequences.

In publishing news, I have several updates:

I did not make the final ballot of the Locus Awards, but a few of my friends and colleagues did. Huge congratulations to them! The complete list of finalists is here. Good luck to you all!

My stories ‘The Anchorite Wakes‘ and ‘The Sun From Both Sides‘ will be translated into Czech and published in XB1 Magazine, a long running venue in the Czech Republic. You can find the stories here. Thank you so much to XB1 Magazine for giving me this chance to reach a new audience.

I have a new story in a new anthology, Devil’s Ways, coming out at the end of June. I finished editing ‘Fire in His Eyes, Blood on His Teeth’ in the wake of my mother’s passing, a very difficult time for me, so I was happy to see it positively highlighted in the excellent Publishers Weekly review for the collection. The anthology is available for pre-order now. Pre-order sales are very important, especially for small presses like Dragonwell, so please, support this diverse and eclectic collection if you can.

I attended my first two Cons EVER virtually. Thank you to the organizers of WisCon44 and the Nebula Awards Conference. WisCon had a free option that made my attendance possible, and the SFWA granted me a scholarship to attend the Nebulas. I can’t recommend both Cons highly enough. I learned a lot and made many friends, especially at the Nebulas. Thank you for making the Cons an inclusive and safe space for someone like me.

To all of my friends, readers and colleagues.

Black Lives Matter.

We WILL come out of this period with a better world once everyone understands this. But let’s not forget, Covid-19 is raging across this globe. Make sure you take what actions you need to as good citizens to make a safer, healthier world for you and yours.

So protest. Vote. Socially distance. Wear your mask. Wash your hands.

Don’t give up, no matter what.

And to everyone who’s stood with black people at this time. To everyone who’s doing what they can to protect their loved ones from the virus, and everyone working day and night keep citizens healthy, treat the sick, find a vaccine. To all those who have stood up for the right thing, from protesters in the streets to K-pop stans on social media…

Thank you. Love to you.

We’ll get through this together.

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