Wednesday, September 06, 2006

The Fate of Mice Update

Jill at Tachyon just e-mailed me the final table of contents for the collection. For those of you who care about such things, the stories will be:

The Fate of Mice
The Old World (brand-new never-before-published story!)
Jo's Hair
Going After Bobo
Beautiful Stuff
Ever After
Stormdusk (another brand-new story!)
Sorrel's Heart (the really creepy brand-new story I wrote on muscle relaxants!)
GI Jesus

My only disappointment is that Cucumber Gravy won't be included. Gary and I are both very fond of this story, but evidently Jill isn't, and Jacob thinks it's too skiffy because it contains aliens, even though they aren't really the point; the story's character-based SF. I describe it as "C.S. Lewis meets the Coen Brothers in the Nevada desert."

Jacob told me that Tachyon's trying to sell the collection as literary fantasy and doesn't want it to contain space aliens, although there are other SF tropes in there. They know far more about marketing than I do, so I humbly bow to their superior knowledge. Still, it's rather ironic that I've most of my professional career loudly defending SF to all comers (and refusing to apologize for writing it), only to find the editors of a small press that specializes in SF pulling out a story because it's too SF!

Of course, this could just be their tactful way of saying, "We really don't like it."

Anyway, if you want to read it, the link's above. Please note that when you get to the end of the first page, you need to hit the "Page 2" button to get to the rest of the story.


  1. Hi Susan,
    I am thrilled to hear that the Mice book is proceeding nicely towards print. (g)

    What did you intend in Cucumber Gravy? I admit to being a dunce here. I read the story a while back, twice in fact, because I felt I hadn't understood it the first time. When I realized I had gotten caught up on the marijuana thing the first time I looked for something else. It seemed to be about the kindness of a stranger to the aliens. That came across clearly in The Necessary Beggar once you pointed out the political aspects of it. Please don't take this as any form of complaint. I am one of those readers who sometimes have to have the point slap them in the face before they get it. (sigh) Darn poor reading education. Kids today are getting better.

    Because I can't remember the title, is your Cinderella story in it? That one still sticks in my head because it was so different from the usual rewritten fairytale stuff. I make a point of reading stories in that sub genre. I'm thinking I might want to reread it.


  2. Thanks, Lee! I'm thrilled too; and yes, "Ever After" is included in the collection.

    CG's intended as a character study of a fairly difficult person doing the best he can in circumstances where he doesn't, and can't, know if he's doing "the right thing." He just has to go by his heart and instincts. But he winds up, in turn, being tended to (and having some stereotypes messed with) by another stranger.

    Other people may find different things, though!


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