“Write all the time. I believe in writing every day, at least a thousand words a day. We have a strange idea about writing: that it can be done, and done well, without a great deal of effort. Dancers practice every day, musicians practice every day, even when they are at the peak of their careers – especially then. Somehow, we don’t take writing as seriously. But writing – writing wonderfully – takes just as much dedication.”—Theodora Goss
“Write all the time. I believe in writing every day, at least a thousand words a day. We have a strange idea about writing: that it can be done, and done well, without a great deal of effort. Dancers practice every day, musicians practice every day, even when they are at the peak of their careers – especially then. Somehow, we don’t take writing as seriously. But writing – writing wonderfully – takes just as much dedication.” ”—Theodora Goss
Update: Justine Larbalastier is a guest author for Alpha
For those of you who weren’t paying attention, this means that the Alpha Workshop for Young Writers will be featuring guest authors Scott Westerfeld, Tamora Pierce, Theodora Goss, and Justine Larbalastier. If you are between the ages of 14 and 19 and have ANY interest in writing genre fiction, you need to get off tumblr and apply. Right now. Stop reading this post and apply.
"Fairy Tale" by Theodora Goss
You ask where you will find her. Beside the singing fountains,
Where orange trees are blossoming and perfuming the air,
Where the night is like an orchard, with orange blossoms shining,
And the spirit of the fountains unbinds her wild blue hair.
Ask courage of the crimson bird and follow where it tells you,
The talking bird that maps the long brown road to heart’s desire.
Pass by the groaning forests, and boars that speak in parables,
And stop your ears as you approach the taunting realms of fire.
When you have reached the final citadel, you’ll find the trousers
That give a man a league at step, the cither that is wise
Enough to know how you can open all the cut–glass doorways.
Release the cat that smiles and blinks its dreaming amber eyes.
Then, after chasm and abyss, and after crystal mountains
That dazzle and confuse the mind like verticle green seas,
You’ll come at last beneath the trees of fragrant orange–orchards
Where the princess in the singing fountains bathes her soft white knees.
a tiny family reclist
The fourth tiny reclist theme is family! In particular, these stories are about the families we make ourselves.
The Mad Scientist’s Daughter, by Theodora Goss
The classic mad scientists are all very well, but it’s hard to imagine that they made very good fathers. Where else can their daughters turn except to each other?
At the mouth of the River of Bees, by Kij Johnson
Linna and her German shepherd follow a river of bees much further than they intended, and discover some magic along the way. A story about journeys, and about letting go.
Black Betty, by Nisi Shawl
Even talking animals, it turns out, have to deal with racism. A painful, sweet, powerful story of friendship and language.
Like what you read? Looking for something in print?
If you liked “The Mad Scientist’s Daughter,” try Goss’s beautiful short story collection In The Forest of Forgetting. The opening story, “A Rose in Twelve Petals,” is a retelling of Sleeping Beauty, from every possible perspective, including that of the spinning wheel.
If you liked “At the mouth of the River of Bees,” you can read many of Kij Johnson’s other marvelous stories online, or in her recent anthology At the Mouth of the River of Bees. (Note: I have not read all the stories in this anthology, but be warned for violence and graphic sex in many of her stories, both online and in print.)
And if you like this list, my other recs are under the tag tiny reclists. Take a look!
“I think there is a certain age, for women, when you become fearless. It may be a different age for every woman, I don’t know. It’s not that you stop fearing things: I’m still afraid of heights, for example. Or rather, of falling — heights aren’t the problem. But you stop fearing life itself. It’s when you become fearless in that way that you decide to live. Perhaps it’s when you come to the realization that the point of life isn’t to be rich, or secure, or even to be loved — to be any of the things that people usually think is the point. The point of life is to live as deeply as possible, to experience fully. And that can be done in so many ways.”—Theodora Goss (From her blog post, Fearless Women)
This is truly a majestic thing.
A woman taught at the writers’ camp I went to, a long time ago.
She writes really insightful/incredible stories, but also blogs, which are sometimes even more helpful.
“A secret story is a story you tell about yourself, as you’re going through your daily life. We probably all had secret stories when we were children. I know I did. I was in disguise as an ordinary student, but I had actually come from fairyland, or the future, or somewhere else, and I was just observing the people around me. I would eventually have to report back to my superiors, or turn all the people I had been observing into the animals they most resembled, or I would simply go back to where I came from — which was of course much more magical than where I was.”
Read the rest here: http://theodoragoss.com/2012/09/27/your-secret-story/