I’ve got two short stories out this summer. The first one, “The Enchanted Gardener,” I didn’t think I’d ever see out in the world. It’s about living in a fairy tale world — a.k.a. our world with a heavy layer of tropes, archetypes, and forestry — and not being what you’re supposed to be. It’s also about being ace, which was a bit of a tough sell, as stories go.

I have mixed feelings about submitting my short stories around. On the one hand, I love to get paid. On the other hand, there’s the mortifying ordeal of being known. Somehow, without my realizing it until it was way too late, I’d written a sort of timeline of what I’ve been processing over the last few years — grief and queerness and self-worth.

What I enjoyed about collaborative game writing was the distance it afforded me. That, plus it was fun to inhale cheese puffs and shoot the shit during brainstorm meetings. (If any of my former employers see this, no you didn’t.) But writing short fiction has, completely by accident, become strangely, horrifyingly personal.

My second story out this summer, “One Coin, Under Earth,” I wrote in 2019, which feels like a lifetime ago. When I look back on my funky little sky train burnout kid, I see a snapshot of what I was thinking about and going through at the time.

I have one more short story keeping warm in the rice cooker. This story, like every other, is another mark on my timeline, another bit of crusty mineral stuff left behind by the evaporated tap water of my soul, or whatever. And even if it’s embarrassing, it’ll be nice to have another tangible reminder of who I was and who I hope to be. Plus, it’s got hella snacks.

So that’s the update. Never say I can’t write an uncomfortably personal blog post. I’m versatile! I wrote a parody of Breaking Bad once and didn’t call it Baking Bad, which I will regret for the rest of my days! Alright, let’s get outta here.