4 min read

Stone Soup Digest 12.02.22 & My Fave Reads of November

Eligibility, Fave reads, Solidarity.
Photo by OMK / Unsplash
Photo by OMK / Unsplash

Welcome to the Stone Soup Weekly Digest! This is where I share what I'm up to and some of my favorite things from around the internet. Subscribe to Stone Soup to get this in your inbox every week.

It’s Awards Season

The end of every year brings a rush of awards eligibility posts in which people remind you that they did things throughout the year and if you’re the nominating kind, you might consider nominating those things. If you want to nominate me for some awards (which I would enjoy very much), you might find information you need in this list. Here’s what I’ve released this year and what I’m eligible for:

Best Novel:

  • Just Like Home (Tor) - a horror novel about family, violence, and houses that love you back. Note that this is eligible for horror awards as well as SFF and literary awards!

Best Short Fiction:

  • The Daily Commute (The Sunday Morning Transport) - a short story about magic, public transportation, and the way our fears make us unkind to each other.
The bus is slowing down and the apiarist doesn’t seem to care at all. This is a problem for us. We have to get to work and to school and to our appointments. But the apiarist doesn’t care about that. They don’t care about anything but the bees and the bus. It’s infuriating. We are infuriated.
  • When the Tide Rises (Tomorrow’s Parties: Life in the Anthropocene anthology) - a short story about disability, climate change, and living in a company town at the bottom of the sea.
There is a goby in my cupped hands. I don’t have to work very hard to keep it there, even though it probably wants to be back with its school. I just lifted up my hands around it in a bowl of latex-covered fingers and it committed itself to its new home, swimming in steady, unpanicked ellipses, lipping at the heels of my palms. It is bright red and bright orange and vivid electric blue, the same colors as the Octarius Industries logo that repeats over and over across the entire surface of my wetsuit. The company is the only thing that stands between me and the ocean and these colors are the symbol of that protection. Maybe, I think, the goby feels safe in my cupped hands because it can see those colors. Maybe it thinks I’m part of the school. Maybe it sees that logo and says to itself here is the place where my friends and I stand together against things with mouths.

Best Comic:

  • The Vampire Slayer (BOOM! Studios) - after Buffy loses her powers, it's up to a new Slayer to take up the mantle. This series is focused on relationships and the ways in which we sometimes hurt each other most by trying to help.

Best Related Work:

It is the easiest thing in the world to love a monster. It’s easy to love a monster because love isn’t a decision. It’s no one’s fault that love happens. Emotions, urges, and impulses are themselves beyond our ability to control. Love in its many forms wells up out of the human spirit irrepressibly. Like anger or sadness or the desire to kill, it arrives without invitation or intention. Action might spring from emotion—love might lead to an expression of affection, anger might lead to violence, a powerful impulse might lead to a monstrous act. But on its own, love is no different from any other feeling. To love a monster is easy, when the monster seems loveable.
We are reaching for each other. There is so much space between us, and yet still we are always reaching for each other, even if we’ll never quite manage to bridge the gap between our fingertips. We are reaching, although we are very tired. We are reaching as best we can.
Do you have a moment?

Best Fanzine:

  • Stone Soup is a free-to-read newsletter featuring essays, short fiction, and community. This year, it has featured multiple ongoing series recommending books, newsletters, short fiction, art, and more, as well as hosting a wide array of guest essays by new and established voices including Max Gladstone, Charlie Jane Anders, and Meg Elison.

Best Fan Writer:

  • Sarah Gailey. That’s me!

My Favorite Reads of November Harper Collins Strike Support

It’s been 17 days since the HarperCollins Union went on strike and they’ve had no word from management yet. That’s horseshit and I’m continuing to not recommend books until aforementioned steaming pile gets shovelled. Here are some updates on the strike and some reminders about how you can support the striking workers! And hey, if you’re feeling dismayed because you usually buy books based on the Fave Reads suggestions? Consider using that cash to support the strike instead!

How to support the HarperCollins Union in your daily life

  • In addition to refusing to give workers the kind of pay raise that HarperCollins execs find in the couch cushions of their vacation homes, HarperCollins is reportedly trying to recruit local bookstore employees and students as “paid interns” (aka scabs). If HarperCollins reaches out to you to try to get you to cross the picket line, tell them you stand with the HC Union!
  • I’m not recommending books right now, but it’s important to note that the HC Union isn’t calling for a boycott of HC titles since that hurts authors. If you’re going to purchase an HC title, remember to go through bookshop.org, a bookseller that doesn’t support unionbusting!
  • Another great way to support your favorite authors during the HC Union strike is to rate and review their books. Head over to Goodreads and get generous with your five stars!

How to directly support the HarperCollins Union right now

Remember, striking workers are fighting not only for their own rights, but for all of ours, too. Every time a strike is successful, workers gain more power – the power to demand fair pay, humane working conditions, and honorable treatment. We stand with the HarperCollins Union and they stand with us. Solidarity forever!

If you’re a paying subscriber, come by the Stone Soup Supper Club for our weekly chat! I can’t wait to find out how you’re doing.