Writing

It Takes a Village – Pursuit of Publishing Panel at Litquake!

This Sunday, 10/14, at 3:30 pm, I’ll be on the Pursuit of Publishing: It Takes a Village Panel at Litquake!

litquake 2018

This is my first ever Litquake appearance, and I’m excited to participate. Panel description: What does it take to create and sustain a writing community? CCA’s Leslie Roberts discusses strength in numbers with Mary Volmer (Hedgebrook), Scott James (Castro Writers Coop), Casey Bennett (Lit Events for the Lit-Minded), and . . . me! I’ll be sharing about my work co-helming the East Bay Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers Meetup, a San Francisco chapter of Women Who Submit Lit, and two closed Facebook groups for female writers – one for speculative fiction writers across the globe and one for writers of all stripes in the Bay Area.

Some tickets will be available at the door, but a few tickets are still online for $25. That price includes three earlier panels on the same day, all designed to aid writers on their path to publication. All four Pursuit of Publishing panels will take place at the Timken Auditorium of the California College of the Arts at 1111 Eight Street in San Francisco.

Join us!

Join me for the Women Who Submit Lit Reading 8/11!

This Saturday afternoon at 4 pm, I’ll be reading at the first ever Women Who Submit Lit Reading! What is Women Who Submit Lit (WWS)? Founded in 2011, WWS seeks to empower women writers by creating physical and virtual spaces for sharing information, supporting and encouraging literary submissions, and clarifying the submission and publication process.

I helm one chapter of WWS in the Bay Area and primarily organize submission parties, where we get together and encourage each other to submit our work out for publication.  Dominica Phetteplace, who passed that duty on to me last year, decided it would be fun to have a reading for our chapter and thus, this reading was born!

Women Who Submit Lit Reading

Women who submit lit bay area

When: Saturday, August 11, 4 pm.

Where: The Octopus Literary Salon, 2101 Webster St., Oakland

RSVP: Facebook Event

Who: Me, Dominica, Jennifer Ng, MK Chavez, and Simmi Aujli! Bios below.We’re all regular members of this WWS chapter, except MK, who’s starting her own chapter in Fruitvale very soon. Come for more details on that.

And just come! There may be an after party…

Becca Gomez Farrell‘s debut epic fantasy novel, Wings Unseen, was published in August 2017 by Meerkat Press. Her speculative short fiction can be read in Beneath Ceaseless Skies, the Future Fire, and Dark Luminous Wings. Becca also blogs about food, drink, and travel at theGourmez.com.

Jennifer Ng is a writer in San Francisco. She recently published a nonfiction book, Ice Cream Travel Guide, and is working on a novel based on her grandparents’ lives in China, Peru, and the United States. Her work has appeared in Arkana, Havik, Cold Creek Review, Shut Up and Write! Zine, and Airplane Reading. In her writing, she explores identity and relationships. If she was asked about her favorite hobby at the age of 8, she would have answered “observing”, which is still a joy and an inspiration for storytelling. Read more at jennism.com or follow her on twitter: @jennism.

Simmi Aujla is an Indian-American speculative fiction writer based in the Bay Area. She is an alum of the VONA / Voices of Our Nation workshop, where she studied genre fiction. A 2018 fellow at the San Francisco Writers’ Grotto, in the fall she will attend an interdisciplinary arts residency at Marble House Project. Simmi is a Brown alum and former journalist, with experience at Politico, the Wall Street Journal, and the Associated Press. Keep up with her at www.simmiaujla.com.

Oakland based Latinx writer Mk Chavez is the author of Mothermorphosis and Dear Animal, (Nomadic Press.) She is a recipient of a 2017 Pen Oakland Josephine Miles Award and her poem The New Whitehouse, Finding Myself Among the Ruins was selected by Eileen Myles for the Cosmonauts Avenue 2017 Poetry Award. She is a co-founder/curator of the reading series Lyrics & Dirges and co-director of the Berkeley Poetry Festival, a fellow with CantoMundo, a writer in residence at Alley Cat Books, and this fall she will be the guest curator of the reading series at UC Berkeley Art Museum and Pacific Film Archive.

Dominica Phetteplace is a math tutor who writes literary and science fiction. Her work has appeared in Analog, Asimov’s, Clarkesworld and F&SF. She has won a Pushcart Prize, a Rona Jaffe Award, a Barbara Deming Award and fellowships from the MacDowell Colony, I-Park, and Marble House Project.

Nominate Wings Unseen for the Dragon Awards!

Now in its third year, the Dragon Awards are held during Dragon Con, the legendary convention in Atlanta that brings the city to a halt by bringing together tens of thousands of fans of speculative fictions novels, movies, comics, games, and more.

dragon con

I…have never been to Dragon Con, but that will not stop me from lobbying for your vote! You also do not need to go to Dragon Con to nominate my eligible fantasy novel, Wings Unseen, for a Dragon Award. These awards are entirely voted on by fans, and all that needs to be done to nominate is to register and confirm your email address then fill in your nominations – and you don’t even need to give a nomination for every category. But you can! Categories include not only best novels and comic books but best games and movies from multiple platforms.

Don't you want me to have one of these bright, shiny trophies?

Don’t you want me to have one of these bright, shiny trophies?

If you deem Wings Unseen worthy, go ahead and give it a nod. It’ll just take a few minutes to complete the form here. I suggest the Best Fantasy Novel category vs Best Young Adult Novel category, but use whichever one you feel the book most fits. And thanks for your support!

Order Your Autographed Gifts of Wings Unseen by 12/16!

We’re only 20 days out from Christmas, and thus the time for gift giving is upon us! For $15, you can send a signed, personalized copy of my epic fantasy, Wings Unseen, to anyone you love – heck, it’s cool if you send it to someone you only kind of like, too. 😉

wings unseen, book, epic fantasy

My friends, Paul and Ann, whom I kind of like, I guess, getting their signed copies at my book launch.

$15 includes the book, and my signature and a personal message, filled out from your instructions on whom I should address that message too. It also includes shipping costs! What is Wings Unseen? Here’s my full page on it.

This price is only available until 12/16. After that, I won’t be able to ship via media mail in time for Christmas. But I am happy to use a more expensive shipping option to get it to your loved one for opening under the tree!

wings unseen, loki, cats

Loki guaranteed for good cuddling.

How to order? You can contact me via direct message on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram or just email me at becca@thegourmez.com. We’ll discuss payment and shipping methods – either Paypal, Square, or Venmo will work, and I am amenable to other shipping options, but the price will reflect those other options.

Or you can just order Wings Unseen off Amazon! It’s only $12 currently, which is a deal! But that doesn’t include author signature…

Happy holidays, dear readers, friends, and family!

Join me Friday, 10/20, for the Speculative Fiction Cantina Livestream and an At the Inkwell Reading!

I’m going to be busy this Friday promoting my fiction, through two different mediums! You, of course, are invited to join in.

First, S. Evan Townsend will interview me at 3 pm PST for the Speculative Fiction Cantina Livestream and Podcast show.

speculative fiction cantina

This show takes place weekly and includes a reading, so I’ll be sharing a selection from Wings Unseen. It’ll be a chance for my “radio voice” to come out, which people have told me I have for most of my life. I’ll be appearing along with author Brian James, and based on past shows, it should be a fun, casual time of speculative fiction appreciation. You can tune in here on Friday at 3 pm PST: LINKY LINK

Second, I’ll be reading for the At the Inkwell Flash Fiction Night, which takes place at Alley Cat Books in San Francisco at 7 pm.

at the inkwell

This is the second time I’ll have read with At the Inkwell, which is a national organization dedicated to helping writers get more exposure through reviews and reading series. The Alley Cat Books space is one of the best I’ve been to for literary readings, and I’m excited for flash fiction to be the chosen topic – it’ll give me a break from reading book excerpts! I’ll likely be sharing “What Scattered in the Wind,” which is published in Little Letters on the Skin, and some Halloween-themed micro-fiction I’ve been working on. If there’s time, perhaps “Hobgoblin” will also make an appearance at the mic. More info on the event is here: LINKY LINK.

I would love to see you at Alley Cat Books or know you’ve tuned in to the Speculative Fiction Cantina this Friday!

Dark Luminous Wings Pre-sale for $2.99!

My next short story will appear in the forthcoming Dark Luminous Wings anthology – and I mean forthcoming soon! Dark Luminous Wings will be released on 10/21, this next Saturday.

dark luminous wings rebecca gomez farrell

Synopsis:

From Icarus to Da Vinci to tomorrow’s astronauts, humans have dreamt of flight. Feathered wings. Mechanical wings. Leathery wings. Steel wings. Stories of winged creatures set in graveyards and churches, bustling cities, fantastical worlds, alternate histories, and outer spacet reveal the shifting nature of Dark Luminous Wings…Dark Luminous Wings will set your imagination soaring—but watch out for sharp beaks, piercing talons, and gravity.

Folks who pre-order this anthology of 17 speculative fiction short stories will get a discount on the price! The e-book is currently available for $2.99, which will go up to $4.99 on release day. Dark Luminous Wings will also be available in print for $14.99, which is a pretty good deal on its own for that much fiction. Get either one on Amazon by clicking right here:

My short story in the collection, “Treasure,” in one of the first short stories I wrote when I began my career. Don’t worry – I’ve revised it since then. 😆 I do think it’s one of my best now, though it took a while to find a good home (9 personal rejections, 7 form rejections, 1 withdrawal, 1 acceptance). I think you’ll agree once you read it that Dark Luminous Wings is a great fit.

“Treasure” features a female thief thrust into a culture very different from her own, so different she has a difficult time believing such a culture is real. Can someone raised to distrust everyone around her accept grace and love when freely given it? Is it truly given freely? You’ll have to read “Treasure” to find out what Enkid, the story’s protagonist, makes of these questions…under threat of a flying sea monster and the lure of a rock pillar that manifests jewels.

The first few lines:

Wind thundered past the slats of the storage cabin. Hidden within a barrel of fish guts, the stowaway braced herself for lurching. But when the ship pitched sharply sternside, Enkid knew it was no ordinary squall. A storm this bad would force the captain out of his quarters despite his usual drunken stupor, creating an opportunity to filch the beveled, green-glass vial he wore around his neck. It held hemlock tincture, a rare poison that would come in handy for someone in Enkid’s line of work.

May your dreams be free of dark wings, but your mind prepared to tangle with them.I hope you enjoy the fantasy fable of “Treasure”!

city of frogs paperhand puppet intervention

Destroy all Cling-Ons with me at Con-Volution 2017!

This coming weekend, I’m attending Con-Volution 2017, a sci-fi and fantasy convention with a strong focus on all things crafty in the genre.

convolution3

While I will not pretend I can crochet a light saber coozy or program a light board for that perfect ET finger glow, I will share insight into my own craft: writing! Sunday, 10/8, at 12 Noon, I am teaching Destroy All Cling-Ons! This writing workshop is designed to help writers polish their work for publication. Attendees will learn the common phrases, words, and sentence constructions that may be the undoing of an otherwise solid story. Bring in a printed excerpt of your own work or work from my sample, and together, we’ll mercilessly cut out stage directions, prepositions, passive writing, and filler words in accordance with current speculative fiction preferred styles.

What makes me qualified to teach Destroy All Cling-Ons? In addition to the publication of nearly a dozen speculative fiction short stories, a contemporary romance novel, and a YA fantasy novel through traditional routes, I have also copyedited academic and fiction writing for eight years. I co-lead the East Bay Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers Meetup group, a Women Who Submit Writing – San Francisco chapter, and a few Facebook groups dedicated to helping the careers of female writers grow.

If you’d like to join me for this workshop, you’ll need to purchase a membership to Con-Volution at the registration tables at the San Ramon Marriott when you arrive. You can opt for just a Sunday membership (I believe it’ll be $30), but if you want to join in the fun all weekend, the way to go is the full weekend pass for $70. Con-Volution begins with an opening ceremony at 3 pm on 8/6, and closing ceremonies are at 3 pm on 8/8.

I assure you, there will be lots to see and do at this con! But if you want more time with me, I’ll also be leading a discussion group on 8/6 at 4 pm: The Companion as Hero – From Samwise Gamgee to Bill Potts. Join me in discussing the heroic roles that companions have played in genre fiction. Doctor Who, Samwise Gamgee, Chewbacca, and the Buffy Scooby Gang are just a few possible angles. Who is your most memorably heroic sidekick?

I hope you’ll tell me there!

con-volution, convolution, writer's workshop, san ramon

“Treasure” to appear in Dark Luminous Wings

For the first time ever, I will have a short story included in an anthology! In fact, I will have *two* stories in anthologies in the coming months, in addition, of course, to the publication and book tour for Wings Unseen, my first novel. “Treasure,” a fantasy fable appearing in Dark Luminous Wings from Pole to Pole Publishing, shares quite a lot in common with Wings Unseen, actually. Here’s the early anthology cover art that co-editor Vonnie Winslow Crist revealed in May:

dark luminous wings anthology rebecca gomez farrell treasure

“Treasure” is one of my oldest short stories — I began Draft #1 in 2007, and my filename at that time was “black and white.” That name reflects what I wanted to accomplish in writing this story — I wanted to play with the idea of a female thief being thrust into a culture very different from the more violent, selfish one in which she’d been raised, so different that she has a difficult time believing such a culture is real. Can someone raised to distrust everyone around her accept grace and love when freely given it? Is it truly given freely? You’ll have to read “Treasure” to find out what Enkid, the story’s protoganist, makes of these questions…under threat of a flying sea monster called the Laklor and the lure of a rock pillar that manifests jewels and….

And, I think that’s enough info on “Treasure” for now. 😉 If you’ve read an early ARC of Wings Unseen already, then you know those same questions are ones that factor heavily into Vesperi’s point of view in the book, though I might argue that figuring out how to deal with a culture so foreign to one’s own is also a hurdle for Janto and Serra, the two other main POV characters. Challenging our perspectives of how the world works can be one of the hardest quests there is. Obviously, the concept was strongly on my mind then; I began writing Wings Unseen in earnest around the same time I drafted “Treasure.” Both tales also heavily feature creatures with menacing wings. So does my horror short “Thlush-A-Lum” now that I think of it…

city of frogs paperhand puppet intervention

I guess I have a thing for spooky wings.

Before Pole to Pole’s acceptance of “Treasure,” I submitted it out a total of 18 times, resulting in 1 author withdrawal, 7 form rejections, and 9 personal rejections, including 2 from pro-level speculative fiction markets that got THISCLOSE to publishing the story — and I mean that! The editors of both mags told me they held onto it for so long because they’d been hoping to find a place for it but ultimately could not. I also significantly rewrote the story at least twice in the six years since I first sent it out. After all that, I think Dark Luminous Wings is truly where this story was destined to go as I can’t imagine a more perfect fit for it than what their call for submissions detailed:

The volume draws inspiration from Richard Henry Stoddard’s poem, Mors et Vita, particularly stanza two:

Under the awful wings
Which brood over land and sea,
And whose shadows nor lift nor flee—
This is the order of things,
And hath been from of old:
First production,
And last destruction;
So the pendulum swings,
While cradles are rocked and bells are tolled.

Send us your stories about angels and demons, dragons and fairies, airplanes and ornathopters—and more. Let your imaginations soar, but let your stories be found in the darkest of places.

Late October is Dark Luminous Wings’ planned publication date, and I’ll let you know where to order once I have that information. Until then, may your dreams be free of dark wings, but your mind prepared to tangle with them.

What lurks in the wild?

What lurks in the wild?

Goodreads Giveaway of Wings Unseen through June 24!

The LibraryThings giveaway of Wings Unseen is now complete! But do not lose hope, dear readers. There are other ways to get your hands on an early copy of my book….

…Like on Goodreads!

goodreads_f

Through June 24, you can enter to win one of five print copies of Wings Unseen through Goodreads. Yes, that’s right! I said print! How exciting is that?! They are advanced reading copies, which means some important details have not yet made it into the book design, like that dedication and acknowledgment I still need to write….but the story is all there and the book is 90% what it will be in the final version.

The odds are not as much in your favor this time around, with 235 people already entered in the giveaway, but you should totally try. Why? Because I’m proud of this book and I hope you will be proud of it too, enough to leave a review and rating after you get a sneak peek at it.

Goodreads Book Giveaway

Wings Unseen by Rebecca Gomez Farrell

Wings Unseen

by Rebecca Gomez Farrell

Giveaway ends June 24, 2017.

See the giveaway details
at Goodreads.

Enter Giveaway

To enter, you can either click the link in that widget right above this or head to the website to enter directly there – the result will be the same either way! And you may be among the first to hold a copy of Wings Unseen in your hands! Heck, I haven’t done that yet.

To encourage you to enter the Goodreads giveaway, I am giving away a sneak peak myself of one of the four character sigils that Meerkat Press has commissioned for the book! These sigils appear on the chapter title pages for each of my point-of-view characters – or at least the four of them that matter most. The first one is…

Serrafina Gavenstone

wings unseen gavenstone sigil serra

Serra is the daughter of Midra and Goning Gavenstone, the liege-lords of Meditlan, a land of spices and wine – thus the grapevines of her sigil. Both her parents tragically drowned when Serrra was a child. As the book opens, her older brother, Agler, is on a quest for the Ravens, the spies of her home country, Lansera. Serra is engaged to Janto Albrecht, the prince of Lansera, and will wed him in a month. Being a part of the Albrecht family and the someday queen of Lansera is all that Serra has ever wanted, since she moved into their home after her parents’ death. But at 18, Serra has much to learn of wants and what the future holds.

Get your chance to follow Serra’s journey to her own future with an ARC of Wings Unseen from Goodreads! Enter here.

My Next Reading & Story: “What Scattered in the Wind”

Update! This reading and publication has been postponed until 8/11. All other details remain the same. Join me in August instead!

My next short story publication is coming up soon! And I will soon be taking part in a reading to celebrate the launch for the anthology/chapbook it will appear in: Little Letters on the Skin. I do hope you’ll join me.

little letters on the skin

What? The Cleave: Bay Area Women Writers and the Liminal Center Release of the Little Letters on the Skin

When? Friday, June 9, 2017   Friday, August 11, 2017

Where? The Octopus Literary Salon, 2101 Webster St, Oakland.

Time? 7 pm.

Eight other writers and myself, who have been involved with Oakland’s amazing creative space for feminists and womanists, the Liminal Center, will be taking part in the reading and small group Q & A afterward. The anthology will be available for purchase, with all profits going to help support the work of the Liminal Center, which I’ve written about before here and here. I will also bring along a few copies to sell of Typehouse Literary Magazine #9, which featured my humorous sci-fi story, “Mixed Signals, or, Learning How to Speak,” last September.

“What Scattered in the Wind” is not humorous sci-fi, that’s for sure. Rather, it’s horror flash fiction done in a poetic prose style, and it’s the first story I wrote upon moving to the Bay Area. I love the mood of it, and the angst within it, that of a woman struggling with her biggest regret in life and sentenced to forever re-remember it. The first lines?

Hollow rasps of laughter pestered her to wakefulness. Any noise would have done the same, though she clamped her eyelids together in protest. For years, Ruth had heard nothing but the teakettle’s hiss or the slow scrape of her cane against the camper’s floor panels. The creaking sound of her voice rarely interrupted the silence. Unlike the other wayfarers, Ruth had never developed the habit of talking to herself. She didn’t care to hear what she’d have to say.

“Hee-hee, hee-he-heee!

What I am most excited about for this event, however, is the exceptional list of fellow writers reading with me, at least half of whom I’ve read with before and they are STELLAR:

Christine No is a writer, filmmaker and pitbull enthusiast based in Oakland, CA. She is a Pushcart Prize Nominee and the 2016 First Place Poetry Winner of the Litquake Writing Contest. Say hello at  www.christineno.com

Gina Goldblatt is the founder of Liminal, a writing center for women, in Oakland California. She is a writer, an educator and an aerialist.

Hannah Rubin is a writer and artist based in Oakland, CA.

Heather Schubert is a published author, visual artist, teacher, Priestess and mother of four.

Jasmine Wade is obsessed with the tumultuous, hilarious, heartbreaking, and never-ending process of growing up. Find a list of her short stories at www.jasminehwade.com.

Jeneé Darden is an award-winning journalist, public speaker, mental health advocate and proud Oakland native. Visit her podcast and blog CocoaFly.com where she covers issues related to women, race, wellness and sex.

Norma Smith was born in Detroit, grew up in Fresno, California, and has lived and worked in Oakland since the late 1960s. In  support of her writing, she has worked as a ward clerk in hospitals, as a radio producer, as a translator and interpreter, as an educator, and as an editor and writing coach.

Rebecca Gomez Farrell writes all the speculative fiction genres she can conjure up. Find a list of her published shorter works at RebeccaGomezFarrell.com, and find her debut fantasy novel, Wings Unseen, in August 2017 from Meerkat Press.

Ruth Crossman was born and raised in Berkeley and currently lives in Oakland. She is a poet and a songwriter who teaches ESL to support her writing habit.

Additionally, the anthology is edited by Dr. Raina J. León, who’s an associate professor at Saint Mary’s College and the founder of the Cleave reading series along with numerous other accolades. That’s a stellar line-up that I’m glad to be a part of! I do hope you’ll come out and join us, celebrating what women are doing in the literary arts in Oakland. Here’s the Facebook event page, if you’d like to RSVP. I always like to know what friendly faces I’ll see in the crowd!