Nebula Battle Tableaux: The Complete Saga

On the final day of Nebula voting, three warrior nominees from the Short Story Category engaged in a FIERCE BLOODY BATTLE FOR NEBULA SUPREMACY. Amal and I fought valiantly, but Alyssa emerged victorious – huge love and congrats to our comrade and Nebula Award Winning colleague!!

Cast: Alyssa Wong, Amal El-Mohtar, Sam J. Miller

Credits: Art Direction – Julia Rios, Principal Photography – Moss Collum & Isabel Yap, Hair & Make-Up – Sunny Moraine.


Episode One: Combatants battle with supernatural abilities from their own fiction. L-r: Amal El-Mohtar launches attack owls (from “The Truth About Owls”), Alyssa Wong opens up a jar of stolen vicious nasty emotion (from “Hungry Daughters of Starving Mothers”), and Sam J. Miller flings pyrokinetic fire (from “The Heat of Us”).



After defeating Finn (Sam J. Miller) in a bloody light saber battle, Kylo Ren (Alyssa Wong) uses the force to take the coveted 2015 #Nebula Award for Best Short Story… BUT WAIT!! Rey (Amal El-Mohtar) is even MORE skilled in the force, and claims the Nebula for herself..sketch266191126-2-picsay.jpg


Sam J. Miller tries to trick the ICFA Crocodile into eating fellow nominee Amal El-Mohtar, while Alyssa Wong takes glorious, oblivious selfies.



Alyssa Wong eliminates the #Nebula competition, pushing Sam J. Miller to his death in the spike pit that was inexplicably incorporated into the architecture of a Florida airport hotel, while Amal El-Mohtar is too immersed in her book to notice… or worry if she might be next.



Astride her plesiosaur, Amal El-Mohtar engages T-rex-rider Alyssa Wong and styracosaur warrior Sam J. Miller in epic carnage battle to the death. Winner takes all… or at least the 2015 Nebula Award for Best Short Story.



Basking in her Nebula win, Alyssa Wong is too busy taking selfies to notice Amal El-Mohtar poison her coffee… while Sam J. Miller is too enamored of his new tattoo to be of any help whatsoever.



The tables are turned when the magical weapons and fearsome monsters that Amal El-Mohtar &Alyssa Wong & Sam J.Miller have been using to battle for #NebulaAwards supremacy gang up on them! ATTACK OWLS AND PYROKINESIS AND DINOSAUR STEEDS AND CROCODILES AND BOTTLED TOXIC EMOTIONS OH MY


Source Article from

Don’t Forget to Breathe

I put this video from Alexi Murdoch at the top of my post because this is what I want to remind myself and anyone who is on the creative path. I read a blog post from Stephanie Grossman yesterday in which she said she often felt overwhelmed when she entered a bookstore. There are just too many books. Which ones to read? When do we read? What about our job, our families? When do we have time to create?

Today we are inundated with information. Everywhere we look, information assaults us. The difficulty is not in finding new information, but discerning what we should pay attention to and what we should ignore. As we all know, more often than not we ignore the more important things and pay attention to trivialities. How often have we wandered down that internet click-hole when we should have been reading, writing, simply breathing? Too often, for me.

Sometimes I find it necessary to pause. I restrict my social media access. I do not read the news, which is full of tragedies large and small. I avoid television and over-sensitization. For certain creative types, like myself, we are more sensitive to overstimulation. Artists pay attention to the world more intensely than most, typically. We are observers, noticing details others often miss. This results in better art. How can you create if you don’t understand the universe you dwell in? We observe the world and let it penetrate us. And these sensations undergo a psychic alchemy inside our bodies, where they eventually emerge as art. The problem is that when we take in too much, when we oversaturate our senses, for those of us who are already steeped in sensation, this results in burn out.

The solution is taking a break.

Julia Cameron talks about this in The Artist’s Way, and I think she is absolutely correct. Pausing, as an artist, may feel like a betrayal. Don’t we have A,B,C, D and Z to do? Life is short and YOLO and hurry the fuck up because everyone else is rushing, rushing, rushing, and if we don’t get it done then…then….then…

Seriously. Breathe. Pause. Take a moment. Take a few days, if you have to. It’s okay. Life will be there when you return. 

Source Article from

Beneath Ceaseless Skies Issue #200

BCS200-HighAbovetheSavannah_MartinEnde_ebook_1000x750_AYou might know that for about seven years I ran a little ‘zine called Sybil’s Garage in which I published fiction, poetry, and art. I loved the hell out of it, but I had to stop because each issue took me two to three months to produce and used up all my free time, so that at the end of the day I had little time to write, my first love. In total, I published seven issues, one per year. 

Next weekBeneath Ceaseless Skies, the literary adventure fantasy magazine edited and run by Scott H. Andrews, will publish its 200th issue. Stop and think about that number for a moment.


Beneath Ceaseless Skies has published a new issue every fortnight since October 2008. Twenty-six issues per year for eight consecutive years, without pause, publishing some of the most well known names in fantasy. Some of those have even been double issues, twice the fiction. Ask any author who’s ever been published in Scott’s magazine and she will tell you how much attention he gives each and every story. There’s not a line of prose he doesn’t pore over. Scott also releases audio podcasts with each new issue. He reads and records most of them (or hires talented voice actors to read the stories) and edits every podcast himself. In a recent conversation, Scott told me it takes him up to eight hours to edit a single podcast. Despite this, each new issue appears like clockwork. Like magic.

I’ve had two stories published in the magazine, I designed the website, and I speak regularly to him about the magazine. I see what goes on behind the scenes at BCS. And here’s the thing I’ve known for a long time: it takes an enormous amount of work to produce an issue, yet Scott H. Andrews has produced 200 of them with no intention of stopping anytime soon. And here’s the craziest part of all that: every issue — every single one — is available for free online and as an ebook. 

The whole genre community benefits from this. Because of Scott’s efforts, BCS and the stories therein have garnered many awards and accolades. And while award recognition is great, I think it’s high time we thank Scott in other more practical ways. We can do this by giving back a little bit, by subscribing. If you’ve ever read a BCS story, if you’ve ever enjoyed a podcast he’s painstakingly edited for hours, then you have benefitted from the many hours of Scott has labored. This week, as he gears up to release the 200th issue of Beneath Ceaseless Skies, please consider subscribing to the magazine so that you can continue to enjoy Beneath Ceaseless Skies for 200 more issues. You’ll thank yourself eight years from now.




Source Article from

“Hungry Daughters of Starving Mothers” wins Nebula Award for Best Short Story!!!




I am so, SO blown away by the response this story has gotten. I’m honored that it resonated with people so much that it won a Nebula. I STILL CAN’T BELIEVE I WON A NEBULA. WHAT. (If you want to read “Hungry Daughters of Starving Mothers,”, it’s online at Nightmare Magazine, available to read for free, right here!!)

This year, women swept the Nebula Awards, from the Norton to the Best Novel categories. io9 has coverage the full list of finalists, as well as those who received awards. And the culture, programming, and general feel of the Nebula Awards Weekend was much more smoothly run and felt more open to newcomers (the mentorship program was awesome!) than either of the other years I’ve attended the conference. So thank you, Mary Robinette Kowal!

Turns out there’s a video of my acceptance speech, and I want to put the text up here as well. It’s incredible to realize that I’m the first Filipina to not only be nominated for, but to actually win, a Nebula Award. And for a queer horror story! We have so, so much more work to do. But this gives me hope for the future. 

Thank you, friends. I can’t express how incredibly grateful I am to you, for you. Thank you for reading my stories, and thank you for sharing your own.


Thank you so much.

“Hungry Daughters of Starving Mothers” was originally published in Nightmare Magazine’s special issue, Queers Destroy Horror, which highlighted work by queer-identified artists, writers, and creators. I was, and am, incredibly honored to be part of the Destroy projects, because I think that having bold representation in media is incredibly important. It tells people like us, “Yes, our stories are wanted. Yes, we can do it.” And I believe that everyone should have that experience.

I’d like to thank Wendy Wagner, my editor, and the Nightmare Magazine staff, who worked so hard on the Queers Destroy Horror issue, and who consistently turn out quality work. Huge thanks to Carl Engle-laird for helping me title this story, because I am consistently bad at titles. I’d like to thank my Clarion class, who sat through an abysmal first draft of this story and then refused to let me give up on it; and the biggest of thanks to my partner for believing in me and supporting my work.

Finally, I’d like to thank my queer Asian American family. This one’s for you.

Thank you.

Source Article from

where I will BEA this friday!

AASIf you’re at Book Expo America (BEA) in Chicago this week, come to my autographing on Friday to get a signed copy of my new book, Against All Silence, courtesy of my overlords, Adaptive Books!

Friday, May 13 — 2:30–3 p.m.
Table 4
Add it to your BEA calendar

You will be among the first people in the world to read this book, which will be published in August! Seriously, this is so brand new, I don’t even have copies of it yet! I really really really really hope you like it. I also hear there will be some special, limited-edition giveaways at this event, but I’m not sure if I should say more than that. 😉

If you aren’t at BEA or you miss me there, I will also be crashing the Mass Autographing Session at the SFWA Nebula Weekend at Palmer House on Friday the 13th, from 8 p.m. on. I’ll be happy to sign anything (anything!) if you corner me, but you’ll have to bring your own books!



Source Article from

Guerrilla Lit Reading, 5/25: Me, Ryan Britt, Lev Grossman

On May 25th, I’ll return to the fantastic Guerrilla Lit reading series, where I performed way back in March 2009, for a special science fiction night, alongside the brilliant Ryan Britt (you should go now and read everything he ever wrote at and NYT-best-selling-author Lev Grossman.

You should come!


DIXON PLACE: 161A Chrystie St., b/w Rivington & Delancey.

Nearby Subway Stops: F to 2nd Avenue; J, Z to Bowery; 6 to Spring; M to Essex; B/D to Grand

Free Admission

The Guerrilla Lit Reading Series has hosted regular readings of emerging and established authors in New York City since 2007. Because the pen is mightier than the Kalashnikov (we hope).

Curated by Lee Matthew Goldberg, Marco Rafalá, Nicole Audrey Spector, and Camellia Phillips

From the event website:

Lev Grossman is the author of five novels, including the #1 New York Times bestselling Magicians trilogy. The Magicians books are published in 25 countries and have been praised by, among others, George R.R. Martin, Audrey Niffenegger, John Green, Joe Hill & Erin Morgenstern. An hour-long drama series based on them is currently airing on Syfy. Grossman is also Time magazine’s book critic & lead technology writer, and he has written essays & criticism for Salon, Slate, the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, Wired, Lingua Franca, the Week, the Village Voice and the Believer, among others. His journalism has earned him a Deadline award, and the New York Times has called him ‘‘one of this country’s smartest and most reliable critics.’’ He has made frequent appearances on NPR and at festivals, conferences & universities all over the world. He lives in Brooklyn with his wife & three children.

Sam J. Miller is a writer & a community organizer. His fiction is in Lightspeed, Asimov’s, Clarkesworld & The Minnesota Review, among others. He is a nominee for the Nebula and Theodore Sturgeon Awards, a winner of the Shirley Jackson Award, and a graduate of the Clarion Writer’s Workshop. His debut novel The Art of Starving is forthcoming from HarperCollins. He lives in New York City.

Ryan Britt is the author of Luke Skywalker Can’t Read. He has written for The New York Times, Electric Literature, The Awl, VICE Motherboard, Clarkesworld Magazine, and is a consulting editor for Story Magazine. He was the staff writer for the Hugo-Award winning web magazine, where he remains a contributor. He lives in New York City.

Source Article from

Locus Online News » 2015 Shirley Jackson Awards Nominees

Locus Online News » 2015 Shirley Jackson Awards Nominees:

I’ve been swamped with work recently and totally out of the loop, so I forgot to post about this: “Hungry Daughters of Starving Mothers” is a finalist for a 2015 Shirley Jackson Award!!!!

This will be the second time I’ve had a short story nominated for the Shirley Jackson Award, and it’s an award that I hold in very high esteem. They also give out really cool nominee mementos:

[close your eyes and hope you don’t win the lottery this year.]

Unfortunately, I likely won’t be able to make it to Readercon in person this year (which is a shame; I love Readercon) due to financials, but I’m crossing my fingers. And even if I don’t win, I’ll have a really cool rock to treasure for the rest of my life. <3

Source Article from

Sigourney Weaver, in conversation about Aliens

On April 26th, the Town Hall in New York City held a 30th-anniversary screening of Aliens (4/26; the film takes place on the planet LV-426)… followed by a conversation and audience Q&A with Lt. Ripley herself, Sigourney Weaver. AND SOMEHOW I WAS IN THAT ROOM!!!

She said lots of amazing stuff. This is me, trying and probably failing to capture some of the highlights.

“I haven’t seen this film for many years, and it’s great to see it on the big screen with such an appreciative audience. It’s so magnificently constructed as a story. All the Marines are such wonderful characters, so beautifully played. In Alien, we didn’t get the chance to really know Ripley, with all her levels. I love her isolation at the beginning of Aliens, the fact that she’s outlived everyone she knew, the world she knew is gone – but The Company doesn’t change.”

“People being in danger is a great catalyst for Ripley – in her mind, she’s earning the right to stay alive. In a situation like that, you do what you have to do. You don’t have time for thought and emotion, and maybe you don’t want those things anyway.”

“The Queen wants to protect her children, too. The face-off at the end between the two mother figures is so important to the themes of motherhood and nurturing that are throughout the film.”

“Using the bazooka was very cathartic for someone who’d been fighting for gun control. I get so excited when I read a script that I don’t always read all the stage directions, so I was very surprised to see so many guns on set, and when I mentioned to Jim ‘I’m not sure about all these guns, you know I’m against guns,’ he said ‘I suggest you read the script again. Because it’s pretty much all guns, all the time.’”

“Unfortunately, I think we have more corporations like Weyland-Yutani now than we did when we made this movie. There’s such an emphasis on profit over everything, no matter the personal or environmental costs – when Paul Reiser tries to justify his actions, these are comments you could read in the paper tomorrow: ‘What we’re doing here is really valuable,’ ‘You don’t understand,’ ‘There’s a lot of money invested in this.’ If anything, our society is going further in this direction, which for me makes Aliens more resonant.”

“In Neill Blomkamp’s sequel, we see a lot more of Ripley and Hicks. It’ll happen, but we have to wait until after Prometheus 2. In fact I just finished a project with Neill that I can’t tell you about, but it was really exciting.”

“In Aliens I was so grateful to have a role where I could get the job done without some skimpy outfit, or something super glamorous. I mean, I don’t want to horrify audiences – I’m sure I wore some makeup, but getting glammed up wouldn’t make sense for this character or what she had to do. I was really fortunate to work with a director who respected that. It’s true that Ripley is a great woman character, but by the end she’s acquired a lot of Everyman, and there’s something that lots of different people can identify with.”

“Gale Ann Hurd [producer of Aliens and tons of other amazing stuff, including The Walking Dead] is very cool and calm and Ripley-like, very diplomatically making everyone move in the same direction.”

“Science fiction is one of the rare spaces in this business where you can tell original stories. And it doesn’t get the respect; critics can’t get their heads around it. This is an exploration of what it means to be human. This is what happens if you don’t take care of climate change.”

The Q&A was mostly full of ridiculous waste-of-Ms-Weaver’s-very-important-time questions (“why didn’t the Alien make a cameo in Ghostbusters? That was a real missed opportunity” (“because we had enough to worry about already”) & “if there was a movie that combined Aliens with Star Trek and Star Wars, would you be in it” (“no”)), but there were a couple of bright spots –

The audience member who said “This is the first time I’ve seen Aliens again since doing two tours in Iraq, and I wanted to tell you that your portrayal of PTSD is so real, it was almost difficult to watch. It really resonated with my experience and that of many people I served with, and I wanted to thank you for your portrayal.”

And when somebody asked her why she hated the Alien vs Predator movies, Sigourney said “Well, I don’t hate them, because I haven’t seen them, because I heard that the Alien doesn’t beat the Predator, and I thought, well, fuck that.”

Sigourney Weaver, in conversation, after a 30th-anniversary screening of Aliens
Sigourney Weaver, in conversation, after a 30th-anniversary screening of Aliens

Source Article from

“Toe the Line:” On Being a 2016 John W. Campbell Award Finalist

On Tuesday, the list of 2016 Hugo Awards finalists was announced. I’m honored to say that this year, in my second and final year of eligibility, I am a finalist for the John W. Campbell Award for Best New Writer! I’m very excited and incredibly grateful to everyone who voted for me. You continue to amaze me with your kindness and faith in my stories. Thank you for putting your trust in them, and in me, enough to nominate me for the Campbell Award.

There are a couple of matters I want to address regarding the Hugo Awards this year. As with the previous year, organized slate voting by the Rabid Puppies heavily impacted the list of finalists. Their efforts were spearheaded by Vox Day, who was quoted on Wired last year as saying, “I wanted to leave a big smoking hole where the Hugo Awards were. All this has ever been is a giant Fuck You—one massive gesture of contempt.”

And the contempt is obvious. Of the 80 spots on the list of Hugo finalists, the Rabid Puppies slate-locked 62 slots across categories, including popular works that may have been nominated on their own merit as well as deliberately inflammatory pieces, including a cruel mockery of another 2014 Hugo-nominated short story, among others. It’s ugly out there. People have asked me how I feel to be nominated for an award in a year so controversial, with malicious attempts at hijacking the Hugo Awards in full swing.

This is my answer.

There is no way in hell I’m withdrawing. The fact is, in spite of the Rabid Puppies attempts to lock people like me out of the finalists list through slate voting, some truly deserving folks and their works slipped onto the list (File 770 has a comprehensive breakdown of the Hugo Award finalists list versus the Rabid slate, with non-Rabid picks highlighted in red). Ann Leckie’s Ancillary Mercy, N.K. Jemisin’s The Fifth Season, Naomi Novik’s Uprooted, Nnedi Okorafor’s Binti. Brooke Bolander’s “And You Shall Know Her by the Trail off Dead.” Liz Gorinksy. Mike Glyer. And Uncanny Magazine, a new semipro magazine run by Lynne and Michael Damian Thomas.

Uncanny Magazine is one of my favorite new magazines, and to be nominated for a Hugo in its first year of eligibility, despite the Rabid Puppies’ attempts to lock down the finalists list, says a lot about the quality of work that the Uncanny team puts out. More than that, it says a lot about how much fans appreciate Uncanny, and how willing they were to vote according to their own values—enough to bump Uncanny onto the finalists list over a Rabid Puppies slate-voted magazine.

And that’s the crux of it. If you are on this list despite the Rabid Puppies’ slate voting, it means you absolutely, absolutely deserve it. It means that enough SFF fans appreciated your work and contributed their individual voices to overwhelm a slate being pushed by an organized mob of malicious people determined to “leave a big smoking hole where the Hugo Awards were.” And to withdraw is to let them win.

As I’ve said, I am very happy to have been voted onto the Campbell finalists list, in spite of the Rabid Puppies slate. Michi Trota (Uncanny Magazine’s managing editor) and I are the first Filipinas ever to be nominated for a Campbell Award or a Hugo Award in any category. As a community, and as a constellation of communities, we are making history at the Hugos this year. We are changing the face of the SFF world in many ways. We can’t undo what has happened; we can only move forward and try to forge a future—of growth rather than destruction—that we want to see.

George R. R. Martin and Brandon Sanderson have already issued statements urging candidates not to withdraw. I would like to add my voice to theirs. And I would like to encourage you to vote on the merit of the works and folks nominated, slates be damned.

I have the honor to be your obedient servant,
A. Wong.

Source Article from