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I’m Back!!!

My goodness, y’all. We talked every day during Lent then…..silence. My contemplative writing, the subject of those 40 posts, has fallen off the same way. Sometimes a marathon depletes you. Then you regain your strength, and I’m back!

Here’s some news: The Big Moose Prize hosted by Black Lawrence Press named When We Were Murderous Time-Traveling Women a semi-finalist. You’re like, what novel? You may remember, it started on this blog. I wrote it because I wanted to, not worrying about the way you’re “supposed” to do it. It’s set in New Orleans. The chapters are tiny. Etoile, the protagonist, talks directly to you. It has deep flashbacks. It’s macabre. It’s funny. It made me happy writing it.

I know, my work is always “close but no cigar” in contests. But this novel–no one has laid eyes on it. Not a single Beta reader. It’s pristine, except a couple of weeks ago I shared the first chapter with my small but mighty writing group. Given how rough it is, yet it still got recognition, I feel it might have potential. Maybe, in a much bigger sense, I’m back.

The novel opens with a ditty I made up to remember the order of the streets in the Bywater: “Ancient Chartres decree the Royal Dauphine drink Burgundy on the Rampart of the castle until St. Claude rises from the dead, again.” Etoile recites the ditty and calls the (dead) Dauphine of France back to New Orleans, along with Etoile’s three (dead) ancestral grannies. The ancestors are heartwarmingly like the Mississippi grannies who raised Etoile when her alcoholic parents could not. Each has killed. Etoile herself fled to New Orleans after accidentally killing her rapist boss. They bring their demented skill set to protecting the Dauphine from the assassin on his tail. Ultimately, the story asks in a darkly comic way: how do we recover after we’ve been forced to kill?

I’m hoping a publisher gives Etoile and her loving—if deadly—grannies a chance.

What have y’all been up to?

Big Moose Prize, Black Lawrence Press, Sci/fi set in New Orleans, When We Were Murderous Time-Traveling Women

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