Dec. 27th, 2018

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Well, 2018 was a year...and so very much of one. It's difficult to disconnect my personal life from the national and global trainwreck, but I'll do my best. It was still a hard year: bad health news for close friends, bad financial and other news for others, the unexpected ending of a long-term friendship, my mother's increasing dementia, the sudden and abrupt news that I wasn't going to be laid off after all (bear in mind that I had three years to plan and prep for a nice break and down time, which I'm not getting), other sundry things. On the other hand, there was a lot of good stuff, too. Queen of Swords Press grew, I went to a lot of great events and met nice people, I'm ending the year with almost all the same people in my life that I hoped would still be there, I had some interesting new experiences and have been learning a lot, I don't have to go job hunting at the moment and I'm a lot healthier than I was this time last year (Norovirus recovery takes longer than you would think).

Starting with the events and experiences part of things, I was interviewed on North Manchester FM's radio show "Hannah's BookShelf" by the amazing Hannah Kate herself, then appeared a few weeks later on the Cocktail Hour Podcast. I did a reading at the University of Minnesota's Tretter Collection in March for the annual Quatrefoil Library's Women's Reading, went to ClexaCon in Las Vegas as a vendor with my pals from Blind Eye Books and hosted a Queen of Swords Press party at WisCon. I got interviewed at Shelfies by Bill Kieffer,  got interviewed with author Rachel Gold in the St. Cloud Times (best headline ever!), interviewed by Paul Weimer at the Skiffy and Fanty Blog and answered 5 Questions for author Loren Rhodes. As Emily L. Byrne, I did the WLW Blog Hop, and had guest posts up at I Heart Lesfic, Women & Words and on Sacchi Green's blog, Reaching Out. In addition to ClexaCon and WisCon, I did readings and panels at Outwrite in Washington, D.C., DreamHaven Books and Eat My Words Books and WordBrew 6 in Minneapolis. Queen of Swords Press had tables at St. Cloud Pride, the Twin Cities Book Festival, the Minnesota Women's Art Festival, 2 instances of the Books and Beer Pop-up Store, the Queer Author Holiday Fair and probably something I'm forgetting.

Writing and editing
. Queen of Swords Press/me and company put out three books this year: Catherine had 6 stories published this year:
  • “A Winter’s Tale” in A Few More Winter Tales edited by Matthew Bright. December, 2018 (Fantasy).
  • “A Cry in the Night,” forthcoming TBD. World of Darkness: Ghosthunters (final title TBD).
  • “The Letter of Marque” reprinted on Curious Fictions. August, 2018. (Historical)
  • “Faceless” and “Firebird” reprinted in the OutWrite 2018 Journal, Issue 1. August, 2018 (Fantasy).
  • “The Mask and the Amontillado,” Tales of the Unanticipated #32, edited by Eric Heideman, July, 2018. (Horror)
  • “One Night in Saint Martin,” March, 2018. Lesbian Historic Motif Podcast, edited by Heather Rose Jones. (Historical)
  • And had an excerpt from Silver Moon in D.C.'s Metro Weekly

Emily (Other Me) had 4 stories published this year -
I also helped raise money for Rainbow Railroad, The Aliveness Project and SAGE: Advocating for LGBT Seniors, donated book packages to Con or Bust and Sirens, and volunteered for my second year in a row as a member of the Community Review Board at PFund Foundation. Wow! I did more than I thought I had! Plus more fun stuff in progress, of course. Big shoutout to all the venues that hosted me, the Press and colleagues, all the other writers who tabled with or did appearances with me, to my wife Jana for helping out and splitting a table at the MN Women's Festival, to my authors, cover artists, copy editor, book designer, videographer and web guru (not all the same person!), to the folks who interviewed me, bought books, reviewed my work, the folks who boosted the signal and recommended books to others, folks who helped with marketing and to my friends who were there for me this year - thank you all very much!

Now for a brief respite, then on to 2019!

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