Helen Marshall

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About Me

Preferred Name

Helen Marshall

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What I Write

Writing Sample

Memory is a tricky thing. It isn’t a ruler, a hard, straight line for measuring the past, the passage of days, months, years. Memory doesn’t work like history books. It’s more like murmurs. Voices whispering in the darkness. Memor. Mindful remembering. Murmure. A low continuous sound. That was how the monks used to remember. They would whisper the words to themselves over and over again in their private cells, fixing images, sentences, whole passages in their minds. And from that, murmuration—a flock of starlings. The sound of beating wings at dusk.

What I Write

“Helen Marshall is a writer who creates real people in real situations, then uses the fantastic to pry her way inside her readers’ ribcages and break us wide open.”
—Neil Gaiman, international bestselling author of The Ocean at the End of the Lane


Gifts for the One Who Comes After (a fiction collection, 2014, ChiZine Publications)
Hair Side, Flesh Side (a fiction collection, 2012, ChiZine Publications)

The Sex Lives of Monsters (a poetry collection, 2013, Kelp Queen Press)
Skeleton Leaves (a poetry collection, 2013, Kelp Queen Press)

My Write-a-thon Goals

Writing Goals

Hello friends!

I’m about to begin work on the edits for my novel Everything that is Born (Random House Canada). My goal is to get it done.and sketch out the beginning of a new novel.

In the old days, death meant a body gone quiet, a marionette with its strings cut, a going away. But now all that has changed. For the ones who are diagnosed as transitional, death has come to mean something else—an irresistible ushering towards transformation.

After her sister Kira drowns, seventeen-year-old Sophie Perella finds herself lashed by grief and dangerously unprepared to face her own diagnosis. Deserted by her devastated mother and trapped in a city she doesn’t know, Sophie spirals into a nightmare of guilt until she resolves to steal her sister’s body from the morgue. But this reckless decision will bring her into terrifying proximity with a world on the verge of ecological collapse and the families who have been left behind to ride out the storm. Yet as Sophie watches her sister’s slow transformation, she discovers that perhaps there is hope after all—if she can be brave enough and strong enough to go after it.

An aunt obsessed by the relics of the Black Death, a cabal of Oxford undergraduates with nothing to lose, and a fellow outsider who has seen for himself the truth of what these transformations mean — their stories converge over a year of wonder, loss and love, and the coming of a beautiful cataclysm, which will reveal the power of the human heart to face extraordinary tragedy—and survive.

Fundraising Goals

I attended the Clarion West workshop in 2012, and I have to say that it has been one of the greatest experiences of my life. I have made friends who have continued to support me and read my work; I’ve kept writing; I’ve published; and I’ve carried with me all the lessons I learned from those six weeks. This is an amazing program, and I want to help it continue to operate and–more importantly–continue to be able to offer scholarships to writers in financial need.

So my goal is to raise whatever I can. But to reward people who contribute, I’m willing to do the following:
0-$25: a free PDF of my poetry chapbook SKELETON LEAVES or THE SEX LIVES OF MONSTERS
$26-$50: A suite of three stories to be published in 2016-17.
$50-$100: the eBook of my collection HAIR SIDE, FLESH SIDE or GIFTS FOR THE ONE WHO COMES AFTER
More than $100: I’ll “tuckerize” you in either a short story or a novel, depending on where best I can use your name.

E-mail me at manuscriptgal@gmail.com to arrange for your reward.


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