Per crimen ad astra

Recently Google Alerts alerted me to a most startling development. My story “How Stella Got Her Grave Back”, published in Many Bloody Returns, has been recommended for a Nebula Award for Best Short Story. As their website says, the Nebulas are annual awards presented by Science Fiction Writers and Fantasy Writers of America to celebrate excellence in science fiction and fantasy writing.

Now I hasten to add that this is NOT a Nebula nomination. The SFWA has an amazingly thorough process for nominating stories. Any story recommended by one member makes it to the list of recommended stories. (That’s where my story is now.) But a story must be recommended by at least nine more members to make it onto the preliminary ballot, and only the top five vote winners from the preliminary ballot make it onto the final ballot. It’s the stories on the final ballot that are considered Nebula nominees. Obviously, I’m a long way from that.

Still, my story has been recommended for a Nebula, and I’m just tickled to death.You see, I started out trying to write fantasy and science fiction, and frankly, I was terrible at it. For whatever reason, I’m better with mysteries, and since I didn’t want to mess with a good thing, since I realized that I’ve pretty much stuck with writing mysteries. And I’ve got no complaints. I’m having a great time, and I’ve been really happy to be part of the mystery community.  But there’s always been a piece of my heart that belonged to fantasy and science fiction. So I was delighted when Locus reviewed Many Bloody Returns, and danced the dance of joy when we made the Locus bestseller list.

Now comes this Nebula recommendation…  I don’t have any idea that I’ll make it to the preliminary ballot, let alone to the final ballot, but having my story listed on the Nebula site is enough for me.

After a long, mysterious trip, I’ve managed to find my way to the stars.

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