My story “The Shoemaker’s Daughter” is now out in Mystic Signals. You can download a PDF version for free right here.
If you like paper, a hard copy of the magazine is also available for $12. Once you get to the link, scroll down a little, and you’ll see it on the lower right.
“The Shoemaker’s Daughter” is another traditional fantasy, set in the world in which I’m writing that long fantasy series I’ve been working on forever. The story contains a brief shout-out to elves (so to speak), but no actual elves appear onstage.
The genesis of the story is perhaps a little odd, in that it was inspired by an NPR interview with a well-known former child celebrity whose career had been closely managed by his overbearing father. For some reason that stuck with me, and as it was tossing around in my head, I also started thinking about the part in Les Miserables where Jean Valjean rescues Cossette from the Thenardier family, who are supposed to be looking after her, but instead are working her to death as a servant. In that case, it turns out to be a good thing for Cossette that the mysterious stranger takes her away; but the Thenardiers don’t have any way of knowing that. What if the stranger’s motives were (possibly) less benevolent?