Need more green queer books! (Image belongs to Ambrose Hall.)
It’s been one heavy year-and-a-bit for me and I’ve slacked off on the blogging while focusing on other things. But I’m missing it. The other day, I happened to look at the stats for this blog and was surprised to find that, despite my absence, people still visit every day. I always hoped my index of queer book reviews would be a helpful resource, so it’s great to see it being used. Maybe it’s time to add to it.
So, I’m going to get back to writing reviews of queer books I read: that’s, by my definition, any book with significant queer characters in it, of any genre. (Or LGBTQIA+ characters, if you prefer.) I’m hoping particularly to root out some good queer horror and dark fiction from the past 10 years. As always, I’ll only review books I feel broadly positive about. I’ve been scouring genre lists in preparation. I’ll include some recent and some older books. I won’t be bankrupting myself buying piles of expensive hardbacks, so I make no claims that this will be a “latest books” resource, but I will make sure to include more recent books.
In writing news, I’m pleased to share that I’ve just had a poem accepted for the blood orange tarot. As a secular tarot enthusiast, I’m really excited to be part of this project. The poem comes from a month’s poetry challenge I did in November with a couple of poet friends on Scribophile (online writing community). It was a Chapbook Challenge (courtesy of Juliette van der Molen at Mookychick). I didn’t manage 30 poems, but as an occasional poet, I was very pleased with the 16 I wrote.
I’ve not been writing a whole lot of shorter work recently, as I’ve been focusing more on longer projects, but I’ve decided to make all my work on Medium publicly visible.
You can find my stories and poetry on my profile here: https://medium.com/@ambrosehall
Or you can access it through this collated list I’ve made: https://medium.com/@ambrosehall/a-collection-of-curious-things-475cb2d8d8cc . There’s a mixture of genres and subject matter, so this might be the easiest way to navigate.
I hope you enjoy reading my stories.
Myths, folklore and fairy tales have a big influence on my writing. This is my first foray into non-fiction on Medium: “Why Telling Queer Myths, Folklore and Fairy Tales is an Act of Healing”. It’s a mixture of personal experience, writing about writing, and reflections on the impact of queer representation (or lack of) in the stories we grow up with. You can read it for free, it’s not behind a paywall. I’d love to hear your thoughts and experiences, too.
I’ve posted all four parts of my new short story, “Falling,” on Medium. Here’s a short excerpt from the beginning and a friend link to all parts below, so you can read them for free if you’re not a Medium member.
His body stretches across the Cour Napoleon, surrounded by the rubble his fall has made, the cracked stone and concrete. If he moves a leg, his foot will crash through the glass pyramid, but he’s still. He must move. He must shrink his vast body to fit the proportions of the mortal world. But he can’t find the will required. A light breeze ruffles the feathers of his wings.
Few in the crowds of tourists can bear it. Some have fallen to their knees and are openly weeping in the street. Most turn away, gather up their loved ones and return home, or the closest haven they can find. One or two hardened souls point their iPhones at him. He sheds tears for them, for their lost awe and wonder, these maimed souls. His tears puddle beneath his face.
A hand touches his arm. A small hand, but he knows it doesn’t belong to a human.
Here are Part 1, Part 2, Part 3 and Part 4. There are also friend links within each part that you can use to navigate by. I hope you enjoy the story.
Check out the hosting publication, The Mad River, for stories and poems of magic and madness. They have a Dark and Holy Writing Challenge coming up.
Gabriel has fallen to Earth and God has left his throne. Read Part 1 of Falling.
I’ve just had the first two parts of my short story, Falling, published in The Mad River on Medium. It’s four parts in total and will all be published in the next few days. I’ll stick links to the whole thing up here when it’s finished. (Medium have created new friend links to get past the paywall, so I can now share those here, but the first part is free, anyway.)
Falling is a story of queer angels, old gods, syncretism, identity and social media tribalism. Some sort of hybrid mythic sci-fi mix. (I’m not very good at sticking in one genre, but I’ve really blown the envelope up here.) I hope you enjoy it. Most of my short stories have been coming out pretty long this year, so this is a bit of experiment in posting a longer work in parts, to see how it goes.
I’ve just posted a new piece of flash fiction on Medium, The Heart Sings Its Own Song. It’s a magic realism story about remembering a loved one.
(Locked to members, but non-members can read three free a month.)
I’m still deep in the editing mines (over half way there now), but I knocked my canary guard out and escaped for a little fairy tale microfiction, Red Sky. On Medium (members locked, but you can see three a month for free).
Story teller, Kris Keppeler, has recorded an audio version of my horror/humour short story, An Old Wish. You can hear it here on her podcast, Does his Happen to You.
I hope you enjoy the recording.
If you’d like to read the original story, check it out here on Medium: An Old Wish.
I’ve just had my flash fiction, Changeling, published on Medium, in the publication The Mad River. They specialise in tales of fairies and madness, so check them out if that’s your sort of thing.
Changeling is a story from the point of view of the changeling boy from A Midsummer Night’s Dream, a what happens next about love and desire. LGBTQ content. I guess you could call it Shakespeare fan fic.
I’ve got a little horror/humour flash fiction up on Medium today: Cosmic Pantry. This one is behind the paywall as my kid needs shoes, but you may still be able to read it without being a member (3 stories per month for non-members).
This month is apparently dark humour month in my head. Hope you enjoy it.