Catherine Lundoff is one of my sisters in Broad Universe, an international nonprofit organization dedicated to promoting, encouraging, honoring, and celebrating women writers and editors in science fiction, fantasy, horror and other speculative genres.
Catherine is an award-winning writer, editor, and publisher from Minneapolis. Her books include Night’s Kiss, Crave, Haunted Hearths and Sapphic Shades: Lesbian Ghost Stories, Hellebore and Rue: Tales of Queer Women and Magic, Silver Moon, and Out of This World: Queer Speculative Fiction Stories. She is the publisher at Queen of Swords Press, a genre fiction publisher specializing in fiction from out of this world.
Her newest book is Scourge of the Seas of Time (and Space).
Think pirates are all about the rum and the pieces of eight? Let these fifteen tales draw you into the adventures of a new kind of pirate. Sail with them as they seek treasure, redemption, love, and revenge. Raise the Jolly Roger and sharpen your cutlass (or recharge your raygun) and climb aboard for some unforgettable voyages. Featuring stories by Ginn Hale, A.J. Fitzwater, Geonn Cannon, Joyce Chng, Elliott Dunstan, Ashley Deng, Su Haddrell, Ed Grabianowski, Mharie West, Matisse Mozer, Soumya Sundar Mukherjee, Megan Arkenberg, Peter Golubock, Michael Merriam and Caroline Scoria.
Did something in the real world inspire Scourge of the Seas of Time (and Space)?
Most of the time, I’m a writer, but in this instance, I’ve just edited my third anthology, which was released on 12/1. Scourge of the Seas of Time (and Space) is an anthology of fantastical pirate stories. Stories range from the purely historical to a wide variety of fantastical settings to stories set in outer space. I’m a huge fan of pirates, both real and imaginary, and I gather my authors are, too! I don’t think I can narrow it down to one or two real pirates, though I do have my favorites.
What is your favorite story in the book?
As the editor, I can’t really play favorites and honestly, I have so many! I love them all, even though they are very different from each other. There are dark fantasy pirates, YA pirates, space pirates: there’s plenty to choose from. Some of the amazing stories that I got included Elliott Dunstan’s “Andromache’s War,” a fantastical tale about Hector’s widow and what she does after the fall of Troy; Ashley Deng’s “The Seafarer,” about a Barbary Corsair piercing the veil between worlds to wreck vengeance on those who wronged him and his people; A.J. Fitzwater’s “Quest for the Heart of Ocean,” a fantasy pirate adventure featuring dapper lesbian capybara pirate captain, Cinrak, who’s also appeared in one of Fitzwater’s stories in Beneath Ceaseless Skies; and Caroline Sciriha’s “A Crooked Path Home,” about a young space pirate who finds himself looking for redemption. There are also Viking pirates, mecha animals in the Indian Ocean, pirates in the swamps of Louisiana, marooned pirates, pirates in the South China Sea and more!
What was your process like as you edited the book?
When I wrote the CFS (Loren’s note: call for submissions), I explicitly stated that I wanted to see pirates from different parts of the world and different time periods. I was hoping to see submissions from international authors as well. I ended up getting just shy of 100 submissions from fourteen countries. Most of the stories came in through open submissions and I read them all. Since pirates can be found all around the world and in every time period, I wanted the final TOC to reflect that. I also wanted LGBTQ+ as well as heterosexual pirates and I wanted to be conscious about gender and author country of origin in the makeup of the final collection. The final TOC includes authors of different gender identities from 8 different countries, including the U.S., as well as the aforementioned wide range of pirate tales. The hard part for me was narrowing all those fun submission down to my final choices, and that I accomplished by reading and rereading. I picked my final fifteen stories, edited them, sent them to the authors for approval and/or changes, sent the next round off to a copyeditor, worked with the authors to make a few more changes and, voila!, instabook! By which I mean about 5-6 months worth of work.
What was the best thing that happened during your promotion of Scourge of the Seas of Time (and Space)?
In the next couple of weeks, I’ve got two bookstore readings, three event tables and a couple of interviews, plus some online promotions. I’m hoping that all of them range from the good to the phenomenal. Right now, there’s all the anxiety of reading the early reviews – but we’re off to a good start!
What do you have planned next?
I’m the publisher at Queen of Swords Press so next up is working on author Alex Acks’s new steampunk book, which will be another series of linked steampunk novellas about Captain Marta Ramos, her crew and her compatriots. I’m also working on Blood Moon, the sequel to my menopausal werewolf novel Silver Moon and plan on putting that out later on next year. Depending on how things go, I’m hoping to open up to book length submissions for a bit and see what I get. The goal is to publish 2-3 books a year as long as I need to work full-time at a day job. I’m hoping that things take off, but better safe than sorry.
You can follow Catherine on her blog at https://catherineldf.dreamwidth.org/.
Her Amazon page is https://amzn.to/2UgPAgG.
And you can pick up a copy of Scourge of the Seas of Time (and Space) at https://amzn.to/2PlOBZc.