My flying beast story, “Beside Calais,” is up at Strange Horizons.
The inspiration for “Beside Calais” came a few years ago when during a visit to Oregon my cousin took us to the wonderful Evergreen Aviation and Space Museum, which along with a lovingly-cared for Spruce Goose and an impressive collection of aircraft had a working reproduction of a Blériot, the monoplane in which Louis Blériot made the first flight across the English Channel. In researching Heaven’s Bones I’d come across Clément Ader’s wonderfully goofy, bat-winged, steampunky Éole and Avion. Given a prompt from prompt-mistress Vylar Kaftan during a Codex Writer’s contest, the idea of early aircraft as living beasts crystallized.
“Beside Calais” is also going to be appearing in the Ann VanderMeer-edited anthology, Steampunk Revolution, a follow-up to the
Huge thanks to Joseph Haines and my wonderful crit group (especially follow-up from Kendall Evans) for their help with “Beside Calais,” and also to Aliette de Bodard for fixing my French.