Clarion West Alumni News for August 2016

Welcome to the August edition of the Clarion West Alumni News! There’s a lot of great stuff in this edition, including an announcement of a new Clarion West class tradition, award announcements, and—as usual—lots of great reading.

Alumni, if you have news you’d like to share with the Clarion West community, send it to We want to hear about both personal and publishing news, and we love pictures. News received by the first of each month will be included in that month’s Alumni News.

We would also love to see any writing or blog posts you’ve done about the Clarion West experience or the Write-a-thon—you can share those as well with

The Clarion West Write-a-thon ended on a high note—an incredible challenge pledge was put up and achieved! Thank you to all of our writers and sponsors for making this fundraiser such a success. You can still sponsor a writer through the end of August at the Clarion West Write-a-thon page.


Dominica Phetteplace (CW ’07) won a Pushcart Prize for “The Story of a True Artist,” published in Zyzzyva, issue #105, Winter 2015. The story will be reprinted in Pushcart Prize XLI, in November 2016.

Usman T. Malik (CW ’13) has been nominated for a World Fantasy Award for his story “The Pauper Prince and the Eucalyptus Jinn,” published at

Rebecca Campbell (CW ’15) is shortlisted for the Sunburst Award for her story “The Glad Hosts,” published in Lackington’s Magazine.


Mimi Mondal‘s (CW ’15) story “The Sea Sings at Night,” first published last year in The WisCon Chronicles Vol. 9: Intersections and Alliances, was reprinted in Digital Fiction Pub. She also has an essay on fantasy fiction from India on the Indian news site, She wrote this essay during the first week of this year’s Clarion West Write-a-thon.

Brooks Peck (CW ’90), curator at Seattle’s EMP Museum, opened the Star Trek 50th anniversary exhibition at the museum last May. On September 4, 2016, a documentary about the creation of that exhibition, as well as myriad other Star Trekanalia, will air on the Smithsonian Channel.

Jude-Marie Green’s‏ (CW ‘10) story, “Quantum Rose,” will be published in Perihelion in August. On August 18, at WorldCon, James Gunn’s Ad Astra will have a reading at noon including her story, “A Superlative for Goodbye.”

Caroline M. Yoachim (CW ’06) and Tina Connolly (CW ’06) each have debut short story collections coming out from Fairwood Press on August 16, exactly 10 years after attending Clarion West. Seven Wonders of a Once and Future World and On the Eyeball Floor are both now available for preorder. Fairwood Press will be having a launch party at WorldCon in Kansas City on Friday, August 19, and they will be appearing at the University Bookstore in Seattle at 7 p.m. on Thursday, August 25. Seven Wonders was also the recipient of a Publisher’s Weekly starred review.

Her Sacred Spirit Soars,” by S. Qiouyi Lu (CW ’16), was published in Strange Horizons.

“Chimeras,” by Julie Steinbacher (CW ’14) (written in Week Six of her Clarion West year with John Crowley and published last year in Escape Pod), is a notable story for the 2016 Best American Science Fiction and Fantasy, guest edited by Karen Joy Fowler. Also on the list are Helena Bell (CW ’13), Kij Johnson (CW ’87), Alice Sola Kim (CW ’04), Rich Larson (CW ’14), Rachel Swirsky (CW ’05), and Caroline M. Yoachim (CW ’06)

The latest episode of Michael R. Underwood‘s (CW ’07) genre dimension-hopping novella series, “The Substitute Sleuth,” is now available for purchase.

Nisi Shawl‘s (CW ’92) essay, “Ones and Twos and Rarely Threes,” was published in August in Fireside Fiction, and she was interviewed for the Imaginary Worlds podcast episode, “Legacy of Octavia Butler.” Her novel Everfair, which comes out in September of this year, just received a starred review in Publisher’s Weekly. announced in July that it has acquired two novellas from JY Yang (CW ’13): “The Red Threads of Fortune” and “The River Runs Red.” These novellas will be published in summer of 2017.

Robert Guffey (CW ’96) has just sold his first novel, Until The Last Dog Dies. It will be published by Night Shade/Skyhorse in late 2017.

Anne Toole‘s (CW ’11) story, “Lions on the Mississippi,” about a sovereign Natchez nation in the state of Mississippi, was published in the anthology Altered State of the Union. She was the writer on the comic “The Monkey’s Paw,” which came out in May in Zenescope’s Grimm Tales of Terror Vol. 2 #8.

Malcolm Devlin (CW ’13) will have his first short story collection, You Will Grow Into Them, published by Unsung Stories in 2017.

Thersa Matsuura‘s (CW ’15) story, “The Carp-Faced Boy,” was published in the anthology The Beauty of Death.

Alice Sola Kim (CW ’04) has a new story out in Lenny: “The Next World and the Next.”

The July 2016 issue of Asimov’s, which came out while editor Sheila Williams was teaching for Clarion West, has three CW alumni in it: Richard William Larson (CW ’14), Mary Anne Mohanraj (CW ’97), and Dominica Phetteplace (CW ’07).

Greg Beatty (CW ’00) had a story, “Positronic Dreams,” accepted by Helios Quarterly.

Appearances and other announcements

Several Clarion West alumni helped create and perform a New Wave/Disco recruitment anthem for SFWA. It was performed at the Nebula Ceremony in May 2016. The performance featured Alyx Dellamonica (CW ’95), Tina Connolly (CW ’06), and Henry Lien (CW ’12). It can be viewed on Youtube. (Click the CC button to view the lyrics.)

Ngwah-Mbo Nana Nkweti (CW ’15) will join Hub City as Writer-In-Residence this fall.

Blythe Woolston (CW ’12) was profiled in Last Best News in July.


Vintage Tomorrows, a steampunk documentary, features interviews with Nisi Shawl (CW ’92), and Margaret Killjoy (CW ’15). It’s available on DVD, video on demand, and digital streaming—visit the movie’s website to learn more about how to watch.

New Clarion West tradition announced

A message from the class of 2012, who won this year’s Write-a-thon class participation challenge and were given the opportunity to come up with a new tradition for Clarion West classes:

“The class of 2012 have emerged from our sixteen-day trance, one day for each class member participating in this year’s Write-a-Thon, to announce the new Clarion West tradition.

“We have been referring to this new tradition variously as “The Echo Box,” “The Whisper Box,” and “The Mutter Box.” Future classes are free to call it whatever they want.

“During the final week of the current workshop, each member of the current class will place one physical item into a box that will be provided to them by the shadowy Clarion West Keepers. The eighteen items must all fit inside the box, which will be no larger than a small briefcase. The box will be given as a gift to the next year’s class.

“Suggested items include an anonymous, handwritten note from a current class member to a future class member containing information such as one piece of writing or workshop advice, a story prompt, a donated story idea, or a true and previously unrevealed personal secret, etc. Other examples include trinkets and keepsakes; treasured handwritten comments from a critique; etc.

“The following year, at the end of the first week, each member of the new class will remove one, and only one, item from the previous year’s box. It is theirs to keep. During the final week, the new class will in turn make their own box for the following year’s class. At that time, they can share the item they chose from the box with their classmates.”

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