Edwina Harvey has accepted my story “Grey Snow in the Shadows” for her next issue of Andromeda Spaceways Inflight Magazine (#58).
This story had, I think, the longest germination of any I’ve yet written. Unusually for me, all the seeds came from other books. The first seed was planted with a gift of a series of Korean novellas from my friend Gord Sellar in 2006, one of which was The Gray Snowman by Ch’oi Yun, an account of underground political activisim in South Korea under the dictatorship of Park Chung-Hee. A story with an amazing, bleak, atmospheric setting.
I carried that seed around for four or five years looking for (changing metaphors) something to bang it against to get a spark. Then I found Ryzsard Kapuscinski’s account of Ugandan dictator Idi Amin in The Shadow of the Sun and an Irish mother during the Potato Famine in Tom Keneally’s Three Famines and all of a sudden I had my antagonist and protagonist, respectively. From the resulting sparks sprang tentacle monsters and Tolkien’s Shadow – because of course that’s what you get when you bang together Korean political activists, Idi Amin and a starving Irish mother.
Well, that, or my imagination just defaults to tentacles and the Shadow of Mordor.
Eh, either way, how could it possibly go wrong?