2016, so that was a year that happened…
The year in review post this year is going to be atypical.
First, I’ll point out that my bibliography is always up-to-date with respect to my original fiction. If you ever find yourself thinking, “Hey, I wonder what original fiction John Chu has published?” that’s where you go to get that question answered.
Honestly, 2016 was not an amazing year for me in terms actually getting any writing done. For reasons not worth getting to, original fiction basically couldn’t happen for the first half of the year. I spent the second half of the year pulling things back together from the first half and working on something which may or may not be one or more of the following:
- A novella
- The first section of a mosaic novel
- The first few chapters of a (non-mosaic) novel
Anyway, I finished the draft on New Year’s Eve (so, now, I can honestly say I finished a piece of original fiction in 2016). We’ll see where it goes from here. (Those of you who attended my readings at ReaderCon and MidAmericon II, this is what I read from. It’s a much better work now. What you heard were fragments I’d written, in one case, literally the day before. I didn’t realize what story I was writing until about November.)
Normally, this is where I put a list of works I read that I want you to read. For the same reasons why the writing didn’t really happen, neither did the reading. I didn’t read enough works that I feel comfortable publishing a list, so we’re skipping that this year. Sorry.
Publishing lag means, though, despite not a whole lot of writing in 2016, I published four stories, two translations and an essay. The translations and essay were even written in 2016!
The four short stories are:
A noirish fantasy about angels and soul addicts. “The Law and the Profits” at The Revelator. This made Tangent’s Recommended List. (This surprises me, BTW, as it’s not the sort of thing I thought they’d like.)
“A man finds love in a fading world” “Selected Afterimages of the Fading” in Defying Doomsday, an anthology of apocalyptic fiction centered on characters with disability, chronic illness and other impairments published by Twelve Planet Press.
Super-powered brothers have issues w/each other. Also, flying death machines. “How to Piss Off a Failed Super-Solder”
Re: the uncertainties of relationships and microprocessor design. “The Sentry Branch Predictor Spec: A Fairy Tale” Ken Liu’s tweet chain about the story is one of the highlights of my 2016. It’s always a thrill when someone gets my work but especially when an exceptional writer does. (And definitely when he calls it “[o]ne of the year’s best stories.”)
The Calculations of Artificials by Chi Hui at Clarkesworld. Fascinating story about what it means to be human. Also, tricky to translate.
A short story for the Guggenheim exhibition Tales of Our Time. They commissioned short stories (including one from Ken Liu!) to accompany the art. I translated a Lo Yi-chin story. The exhibition catalogue is also a short fiction anthology available for purchase
- “We Are More Than Our Skin” in People of Color(u)r Destroy Fantasy I talk about the expectations placed on writers of color and why they need to change.
Anyway, let us all hope that we all have a better 2017.