The title up there is a riff on how every WordPress install comes with the default ‘Hello world!’ post. But also… waoh! I got my first ever published anything into Clarkesworld!
It’s called Meddling Fields and it comes in at almost 5900 words, which for some reason I thought was just an insane word count for someone having had nothing published previously. In fact I had no intention to start submitting it when I did and was instead going to sit on it till enough time had passed that the thought of gutting it so two—maybe three—smaller stories fell out wouldn’t trigger the panic response. This is, after all, one of ma bebes. I think that’s what serious writers are supposed to do; you’re supposed to treat everything you send out into the world as a newborn, a sapling.
That wasn’t this story but that’s hardly ever anything I write. I typically end up thinking of my stories instead as estranged siblings you have to spend a few days out of the year with because otherwise the parents accuse you of not even making the effort to patch things up. Terrible metaphor. I love all two of my irl siblings and it’s always great when I get to talk to them.
Meddling Fields has been described by two people who I did not find while name-searching as Blade Runner-esque. This is the blurb I used while trying to find people to beta-read the thing:
Two hundred years ago, the August Meteorite touched down not far from Timoh’s homestead and split into pieces that each enabled travel between parallel timelines–chaos as far as it concerned Inspector Ransom Nu’Terra from the August Meteorite Recovery Mission.
When she visits Timoh to search his property for pieces of the meteorite, what she ends up finding instead is an invite to embrace the chaos and, in doing so, rewrite her own history.