Every year I recap the writing triumphs and disappointments of the previous twelve months. Every year I feel like I’ve never done enough. This year, even with all that’s happened, I still feel like I wasted too much time. If only I’d hustled a little more…
My major accomplishment of the year was the publication of 199 Cemeteries to See Before You Die. I signed the contract last December and turned in the first draft in March. It came out on October 3 and is already going back for a second printing. It’s the first book I’ve written to gain the notice of Time, the New York Times, and the Wall Street Journal. I’m looking forward to doing more speaking engagements about it next year, including lecturing at Cypress Lawn in September.
Wish You Were Here: Adventures in Cemetery Travel, the second edition of my collection of cemetery travel essays, came out in paperback in August. I was able to update the essays and add an index. My book designer did a great job with the new cover, using one of my favorite photos from my first trip to Highgate Cemetery. Doing the work to update it made me start to think about assembling a second book of essays.
Short fiction publications:
An Alondra story called “The Drowning City,” which appeared in Nevermore! Tales of Murder, Mystery, and the Macabre, appeared in Best New Horror #27, edited by Stephen Jones. It was my first time sharing a table of contents with Neil Gaiman and Gemma Files. It was also the first time I had a story in a Best Of collection, the first time I got to autograph a signature sheet, and the first time a story of mine appeared in hardcover.
“Guardian of the Golden Gate,” an Alondra story about magic in San Francisco and the hunger that lives beneath the Golden Gate Bridge, appeared in the Strange California anthology. The book includes stories by Seanan McGuire, Tim Pratt, Laura Anne Gilman, and so many more.
Short fiction sales:
“Something in the Water,” an Alondra story about San Francisco’s Academy of Sciences, sold to Occult Detective Quarterly for an upcoming issue. I don’t have the details yet.
I’ve also placed “Elle a Vu un Loup,” an Alondra story set in Michigan, but the contract isn’t signed yet. I’m really excited about the venue, though.
I published two more cemetery essays on Gothic Beauty: about Two Rock Valley Cemetery in Northern California and Barcelona’s Poblenou Cemetery.
Cemetery Sights: Norton, Emperor of the United States, my first essay about cemetery treasures, went up on Legacy.com.
My second piece on Mental Floss, published in October, proposed 5 Cemetery Road Trips for the Ultimate Taphophile.
In September, I started a column called Grave Fascinations for the Horror Writers Association’s monthly newsletter.
Guest Post publications:
What a Piece of Work is Man, about visiting the Capuchin catacombs of Rome, was published on HorrorAddicts.net in January.
Reading Your Own Work was published on No Wasted Ink in May.
Did You Know There Are Travel Sites Dedicated to Visiting Cemeteries? appeared on The Author Spot (Stacey Turner’s blog) in October.
The Most Haunted Cemetery in the World, about Greyfriars Kirkyard, appeared on Horror Addicts in October.
Cemeteries and the Ghost of Marie Laveau appeared as part of the October Frights feature on A. F. Stewart’s blog.
The Ultimate Romantic Cemetery, about the cemetery at Stoke Poges, was published on Emmy Z. Madrial’s blog.
An outtake from 199 Cemeteries appeared as American Vampires on the Emz Box blog.