After a horrific smashup on the interstate, Danny inexplicably acquires the ability to foretell and experience specific moments from others’ future lives. This gift destroys his marriage and pushes him to the brink of madness. He finds solace and release as a soothsayer in the back room of the Tree of Life Book Shoppe, handing out tidbits from the futures of his largely narcissistic clients.
Kristi, a Tarot reader extraordinaire at the shop, has known since she was an adolescent visited by strange beings who might be goddesses or aliens—who’s to say—that she can cast spells that transform peoples’ lives, sometimes with disastrous results. When she sets her sights on Danny to win his love, she makes a deal with the Triple Goddess—his love for the pair’s help in fulfilling a wish of the goddess’s own, to save the planet from its inevitable demise from human hands.
Thus begins The Soothsayer & the Changeling in which the varied self-absorbed lives of a stunning beauty, a no-talent screenwriter, a bereaved Christian widow, a disgraced professor, an over-medicated depressive, and a lonely mountain boy with a way with animals are woven together to yield a dream of doom to awaken the slumbering world before it’s too late.
Promising epiphany over apocalypse, The Soothsayer & the Changeling pits our deeply personal obsessive lives against a dying planet upon which all our dreams depend, and offers the possibility of hope and love.
New Novel, The Perfect Stranger, now available from Speaking Volumes.
WHILE SCOURING THE ATTIC of her literary hero and dissertation subject, Gene Sanders Wilkerson, grad student Genevieve Slidell comes upon five previously unknown Wilkerson novels. In a variety of genres and nothing like his previous work, Genevieve fears the stodgy world of Wilkerson scholarship won’t understand them, and she claims them as her own, entering them in a batch of literary contests. Two win and two place.
SHE MAKES THE ROUNDS of genre conventions to accept her honors accompanied by Wilkerson’s ghost Sandy who’s taken with the idea of vicariously enjoying being famous again through her.
EVERYTHING IS GOING SWIIMMINGLY for the pair until they get to Literature where the whole thing blows up, only to be resolved by a clever courtroom drama in which she pleads not insanity but metafiction. A bumper car ride through the crazy business of telling stories, The Perfect Stranger explores the complex relationship between the author and her work.
My story “Healing Benjamin” has had its fifth incarnation. Originally in REALMS OF FANTASY, reprinted in Ellen Datlow’s TALES OF WONDER, in a Japanese collection of sf cat stories, and in LIGHTSPEED. Now it’s in SCIENCE FICTION WORLD in Chinese. Will he get nine lives? He’s a pretty persistent cat. Here’s the cover and illustration.