by Sara Century and S.E. Fleenor
Hello and welcome to Decoded!
We are so excited to share our incredible roster of stories with you starting tomorrow–from a supernatural (feminist) shark to fairies who serve extremely strong drinks to dragons with dental bills, we’ve got something for everyone. (Psst! You can still buy a subscription to Decoded for only $15 here!)
It’s pretty incredible to get to pull together an anthology of this magnitude and scope–and for such an important occasion. This Pride we have 30 LGBTQ+ creators telling 30 original horror, science fiction, and fantasy stories and comics–and every single one of these stories is delightful, thoughtful, and gripping. We have stories that will make you think, stories that will make you laugh, and stories that will probably make you shed a few tears.
At least, that’s been our experience as editors. We’ve cried, laughed, and pondered hard because of these stories and we’ve loved every single minute of it. These stories were so good, in fact, we both felt challenged to bring our A game as writers and editors. We’re proud of and impressed by what we’ve achieved together–and we think readers will be, too.
It’s been a dream come true to get to edit a roster of all queer writers (see the full schedule below), to discuss the complexities of gender and the importance of queerness in our stories alongside conversations about craft and storytelling. To have queerness present not just as a part of our identities, but an important part of how we tell stories is such a gift.
We need queer stories by queer creators now as much as we ever have. We could quote stats and bemoan the state of publishing, but that’s not the point of this publication. Decoded is about exploring the broadest reaches of queerness and telling the stories that matter to us as queer creators.
In the introduction to her writing craft book Never Say You Can’t Survive, being released chapter by chapter on Tor.com, Charlie Jane Anders writes about being trans and living in a terrifying world. In the face of so much evil, she questions the purpose of fiction, of “making up random stories when everything is so messed up.” She answers her own question: “Writing can be an act of survival. It gives us heart and purpose and clarity and the ability to keep going. Making up stories can be a healing process.”
We believe in the power of storytelling to heal, to express, to make space for new ways of thinking and being. From the goofy to the heartbreaking and everything in between, these stories represent queerness in all it’s variegated glory.
Thank you to our authors for trusting us with your stories. We are so proud to share your brilliance with the world.
We’d also like to thank Monika Estrella Negra for providing a sensitivity read of all our stories. We couldn’t have pulled together this wonderful anthology without your help!
May we never forget that the first pride was a riot,
Sara Century and S.E. Fleenor, Editors of Decoded
Our authors include:
June 1 │ Spidertoes by Emmalia Harrington
June 2 │Clearing Cobwebs by Brandon Ortega
June 3 │ Seven Plans of the League of Villainous Empowerment to Break Atomic Patriot’s Hold on Star City by Izzy Wasserstein
June 4 │ Griselda’s Heads by Priya Sridhar
June 5 │ The Tank by A.J. Hartson
June 6 │ Home, Smart Home by Clara Ward
June 7 │ Andy the Anchovy by C.R. Hillin
June 8 │ The Hollow Bones by Sara Century
June 9 │ The Deck by Maria Dong
June 10 │ Mother Mushroom by Elisabeth Moore
June 11 │ The Princess and Her Knight by Sarena Tien
June 12 │ The Thyme Stop by Jalexa Schell-McCall
June 13 │ Dance by Avery Montavon
June 14 │Greyling and Lamprey by S.K. Brownell
June 15 │ The Empty Night, The Hungry Sky by V. Medina
June 16 │ Little Infinities by Kaylee Schuler
June 17 │ The New Emperor’s Clothes by O. Blaufuss
June 18 │ The Incident at Mr. Hungry’s by S.E. Fleenor
June 19 │ Nothing in the Dark by C.M. Fields
June 20 │ Remaking the World by Juliet Kemp
June 21 │ Heady Experience by Emmalia Harrington
June 22 │ Anatidaephobia by Syd Richardson
June 23 │ Healing Touch by Remy Burke
June 24 │ Club Cassandra by Erica Weidner
June 25 │ Córka Rusalka by Josephine M. YaLes
June 26 │ Battlement of Straw by Stephanie Burt and Rachel Gold
June 27 │ What Lies Between Oceans by Sigrid Marianne Gayangos
June 28 │ IQ Match Inc by Diego Angeles
June 29 │ SEE BELOW by N.R.M. Roshak
June 30 │ Garden of Aeon by Bre Rose
And if you haven’t already, make sure to buy a subscription to Decoded Pride Anthology, so you can support all of these fantastic creators!
Sara Century (she/her) is an artist, writer, and filmmaker who is obsessed with most things. She is good at speaking in public, working for most hours of her waking life, and saying quotable things in casual conversation. You can find Sara’s webcomic with Tana Thornock at http://www.thevolatileanesthetic.com Learn more about Sara at: saracentury.com or on Twitter @saracentury
S.E. Fleenor (they/them) writes novels, creative non-fiction, and articles centering on feminism, queer identities, pop culture, and literature. Their writing has appeared in Vice, Electric Literature, them.us, Upworthy, The Muse, and Class Lives: Stories from Across the Economic Divide. They regularly write for SYFY WIRE’s feminist vertical, FANGRRLS, and Daily Xtra. Feisty, sometimes angry, sometimes funny, but always bringing realness, S.E. is ecstatic to share their love of genre with audiences that have historically been excluded, particularly LGBTQ folks. Learn more about S.E. at: sefleenor.com or on Twitter @se_fleenor