Fiction roundup

It’s been a good week for my fiction. The first of the Yamabushi Kaidan Japanese fantasy adventure series, the novelette “Yamabushi Kaidan and the Smoke Dragon“, has been published in the excellent Ticonderoga Publications (“T blah blah, P blah blah” for the uninitiated) anthology Fantastic Wonder Stories.

There’s already an ASif review (a very positive one, for all concerned), in which reviewer Alexandra Pierce says of my story:
“For a classic fantasy short story, look no further than Shane Jiraiya Cummings’ “Yamabushi Kaidan and the Smoke Dragon”. Set in a fantastical Japan, it’s got everything – dragons, mercenaries, mad ninja-esque monks, and mystical scrolls. Kaidan is a funny, mystical monk with issues in the past (a bit Monkey once he’s grown up, maybe); Akio is the novice who makes good and seems in some ways to be Kaidan’s conscience – or at least his reminder about the real world. It’s a lot of fun, and apparently is only the first in a series about Kaidan (yay!).”

This anthology is very much worth your time and varied enough to have something for everyone.

I was also delighted to see the first issue of new pro zine Horror Literature Quarterly is live. Issue #1 features my story “Itch” alongside works by Kealan Patrick Burke and Nate Southard.

If horror with a hint of weirdness is your thing, you can download the first issue as a PDF for free. The stories are relatively short, and again, are well worth your time. C’mon, it’s free!