Monday, December 28, 2015

"Shattered" (as G Daniel Gunn), Co-Written with Paul G. Tremblay / Borderlands 6 Anthology / Summer 2016

At long last this hapless - though admittedly very cool - story has been bought. Good for us, bad for the publisher who bought it. Paul Tremblay and I went back and forth over the course of a few months working on a story we basically wrote stream of consciousness - whatever struck us next we wrote. Then we refined and formed it into the final story.

That was 13 years ago. After a couple of tries it was accepted for publication in a fairly big magazine, which then folded before it saw the light of day. We resubmitted to and was accepted by an upcoming and fairly big anthology - which then folded as well before seeing publication. Hmm, head scratching. But we then picked it up and sent it out again, eventually it was short-listed for another anthology - which was canceled.

Never to say die, we submitted it to Borderlands 6: this was the original incarnation of this extremely influential series, and after learning it had been short-listed here, nothing ever came of the anthology. It sort of fizzled out due to unrelated issues with the publisher, and after three years we just withdrew it (as it most of the other stories people submitted) because it was no longer on the road to publication.

Fast-forward ten years, and the story had been shelved. We we almost afraid to send it anywhere for fear it was cursed or something. Then editor Tom Monteleone resurrected Borderlands 6 with his daughter Olivia and put out a call for stories earlier this year. We decided, why not, let's dust off the story and send it here since it has originally been short-listed before. It was happily accepted, even improved with some editorial suggestions by Tom. We were paid well, signed all the sig sheets and all was good. Borderlands Press was going to do the limited editions, and Samhain Publishing the trade and ebook editions. This part caused me a little concern, because Samhain was currently my publisher for Nightmare in Greasepaint and we were getting rumblings of financial issues.

Nevertheless, "Shattered" did get published, very briefly, before Samhain went out of business completely and closed up shop. Just a few months after it came out, Borderlands 6 had no paperback or ebook, just the rather expensive collector's edition. So, basically, "Shattered" took out its final victim. If I ever publish another short story collection, unfortunately "Shattered" will not be in it. I'd never want to risk it. Too bad, because it's a very cool story. :(   At least it saw the light of day for a little while.