About two weeks ago, Calls for Submission was released by Pelekinesis. I made a nifty comic, did some guests posts, and have enjoyed some really nice reviews at Goodreads, Amazon, and This Is Horror. Here’s a recap of what all has happened:
He writes: “A nearly flawless debut collection. Evocative, lyrical prose combines with realistically flawed and complex characters in a pleasing variety of settings, historical and modern, to become a book that is greater than the sum of its parts.”
Thursday, May 11, I was floored to see more kind words, this time on Facebook via Shadows of Summerland author Adrian van Young. I was thrilled that he dug Calls for Submission and understood a lot of its literary roots that aren’t often noticed. He wrote: “…it’s truly sui generi: elegant, punchy, formally inventive and beautifully written. Think Leonora Carrington, Borges, Caitlin R. Kiernan, and Jennifer Egan, as wild as that sounds.” Thank you, Adrian!
Friday, May 12, my first stop on my Guest Blog Tour was at Literary Hub. This may be the most widely read and circulated piece I’ve written to date, and I was really thrilled to hear several other women had felt drawn to the Surrealist Women creatives during this weird time. As I wrote on Facebook at the time, Literary Hub has become a church for me, and so having this piece there felt a little like confirmation and communion. Many thanks to Emily Firetog for her editorship and giving me the platform to discuss something that’d been on my mind since November.
Monday, May 15, Release Day! I was overwhelmed by the love and support of everyone stepping up and helping me signal boost the book’s release! It was a really fun day, and when I wasn’t online, I spent it and the next few days offline drinking St. Germain cocktails in the ocean with one of my best gal pals. There were no dolphin shows this time, but I did get lightly stung a few times by jellyfish. Nature’s way of saying get back to work, perhaps.
Thursday, May 18, saw the second stop on my Guest Blog Tour at Mary Robinette Kowal’s journal. I wrote about My Favorite Bit in the book, and actually wrote about why I dedicated the book to the members of Babes in Toyland. You can read it here.
Friday, May 19, writer and WOTF Golden Pen winner, Jake Marley reviewed Calls for Submission at This Is Horror. This is CFS first publication review, and I couldn’t be happier (and relieved!). He gives insightful attention to each story, and in summation writes:
“In her debut collection, Selena Chambers uses the power and versatility of short fiction to full effect, combining acute literary sensibilities with a mastery of weird fiction techniques, surrealism, and raw, heartbreaking horror. She’s a chameleon of a writer, slipping into new identities and genres effortlessly, seducing readers with enchanting and altogether high-end prose, and marking her place among the rising and unforgettable voices blossoming in the Weird today.”
Thank you to Jake and the editors of This Is Horror for the time and space!
Monday, May 22, my third stop on the Guest Blog Tour is at Largehearted Boy. My Book Notes playlist features a song for each tale within Calls for Submission, and features expected singles by Nirvana and Babes in Toyland, but a few surprises like newer artists, Slutever and Chagall. As I wrote earlier this week, I’ve been a longtime reader of Largehearted Boy since its early days, and have always viewed it as the epitome of what a blog can actually achieve with focus and citizenship. Just like LitHub felt like taking communion, having a playlist on Largehearted Boy is a wonderful and rare moment of self-actualization–HOLY CRAP I PUBLISHED A THING! Many thanks to David Gutowski for letting me hang and jam with him and the Largehearted Boy readers.
Tuesday, May 23, another 5-star review on Amazon from reader Tracy K. Woodard (thank you!). She writes: “Fun Read: ‘Dive in Me’ is one of the best horror stories I’ve read all year, excellent Southern Gothic with punk sensibility.”
Heck yeah! That’s one of my favorite stories, too, and I am happy to hear Tracy and everyone are enjoying it as much as Jesse Bullington and I enjoyed writing it.
And that’s all for now. There is still some cool stuff on the horizon which I’ll begin to discuss more in the coming days, especially in Tallahassee, FL, where I am doing an event with Midtown Reader on June 16th! I hope to see some familiar faces there.
And thank you to everyone for helping me make this book release so great! Whether you bought the book, spread the word, or just cheered me on–I couldn’t have done this without all of your support. Cheers to you all!