I am scared so much of the time. Sometimes little thoughts like “your house is on fire” will interrupt my conversations, my eyes will blank, and I will apologize and ask that you repeat that last sentence. Sometimes my lungs constrict like they’re about to scream, because idk, we haven’t screamed in a while, and there’s probably something we should be screaming about.
I can cope. I can leave my house. I can hold a lit match to a candle. I can snowboard down a mountain even though my brain is constructing all the horrifying images of my broken body airlifted off the resort when it all goes wrong.
And I can write monsters who are small against my subconscious fears, but they are bigger than me, and they stand a greater chance of winning against despair.
I made a mask this summer with eight eyes and a soft fabric face. I cut a sea witch out of black paper, and painted my favorite peaks in the Tatoosh Mountain Range. I like making things with my hands, and although my favorite thing to make is stories, I don’t know of any markets that will publish an envelope full of paper cut outs.
That’s what the mask was for. I did an odd brave thing and put on an eight eyed mask so I wouldn’t stutter so much on camera, and I introduced a couple stories constructed from cut paper. Would you like to see a thing I made?
Thanks for listening, and for reading, and for continuing to be while the world is so terrifying. If you need a match, I’ll light one. If you need a mask, let’s make one.
In publishing news, my story “If We Could Fix the Horizon” just went live on Toasted Cake, episode 168.
Also, I will have a story called “Where You Get Your Ideas” in the upcoming Artemis Rising month with the Cast of Wonders podcast.