Incredibly, unbelievably, NewCon Press celebrates its 10th anniversary this year. Over the last decade, publisher and editor, Ian Whates, has grown his press from producing a supposed one-shot anthology into a cast iron pillar of the UK genre community. Publishing novels, novellas, collections and anthologies that grace awards shortlists every year, their trademark is bringing their readers SF and Fantasy superstars alongside new names. Their anniversary anthology, Now We Are Ten, is no different, presenting the likes of Ian McDonald, Tricia Sullivan, Peter F Hamilton and Nina Allan between the same covers as writers that are completely new to me. And those new writers are always an exiting discovery.
NewCon have been very good to me over the years, and I was delighted to be asked to contribute a story to this book. Since it’s a celebration, I’ve gone with something very different to my normal style. At this year’s Eastercon, I contributed to a panel on the subject of grief and how that emotion is dealt with in genre fiction, and the conclusion we came to was that it really isn’t a subject that’s tackled head on very often. So my story (which is also a gay, harpy love story) is about that; the stages of grief. In another departure for me, I’ve borrowed a storyform from Hal Duncan that constrains the narrative to ten sections of 100 words each; to fit the theme: 10, 100, 1000.
It’s a piece that I loved writing, and I hope that readers of Now We Are Ten will enjoy it too.