Lauren Dixon

Transmogrify this! Home of Words and Wonder…

Fall Updatin’


It’s been a while since I’ve posted here. I recently deactivated my Facebook account, but I’m also incapacitated and in a walking boot due to some pretty gnarly tendinitis, so I figured I’d take the time I normally spend on Facebook and post a bit on this page.

1) Guess you know I’m wearing a walking boot already. It is one of the single-most frustrating things ever, given that I can’t run, and even wearing a brace to ride the stationary bike at the gym seems to be an “I can’t go for that” situation for my tendons. Dudes, just get it together and heal already, all right? I cannot keep sitting on this couch and dreaming of running forever. So, I have probably about five more weeks of this madness to go through. I hope it heals. This walking boot is like my Hail Mary for running, or activities of any kind, these days. There you go. I used a football metaphor. My life has either no meaning now or has just jumped off the charts of meaningfulness.

2) I have a story coming out very soon, at Menacing Hedge. I’m pretty psyched about it–I wrote the story in 2010 at Clarion West. It’s called “If You Can’t Take the Heat, Don’t Hire a Yeti.” It’s about the usual things: yetis, luchadors, global warming. You know, THINGS THAT ARE REAL.

3) I am maybe being a little too sarcastic right now. I hope you will forgive me.

4) This summer I acted as a workshop assistant for Clarion West. I just wrote a few sentences about the experience and deleted them. I think that’s fair enough. I definitely think it’s a Herculean task to run the workshop, and my favorite people do it admirably well.

5) I am trying to finish a secret project I call “Operation: Out of the Woods.” Yes, I know there’s a Taylor Swift song called “Out of the Woods.” Do I put a winky face here? Is that how you’re supposed to do it?

6) Tomorrow will be one year since Graham Joyce passed away. Part of me still doesn’t think it’s possible that he died, but I know full well he did. I ran a half marathon in his memory at the beginning of May, tendinitis be damned, and raised over $3000 in support of research to eradicate Leukemia and Lymphoma. I know we lose vibrant, out-of-this-world lights each and every day to these diseases, and I can’t stomach it. Graham, wherever you are, people will keep trying. We can do that much, even if it’s never going to be enough.

7) Last month, the writer Paula Bruno, a woman I’ve known since my adolescence, passed away. She even read this blog and wrote encouraging notes to me, and always championed other people, no matter their position in life. She has always reminded me a lot of my mom, and I met her through my mom, so in a way, I feel like losing Paula was like losing a kind of life line. Paula and my mom had this kind of bond that I understood, and I’m so sorry that my mom won’t be able to talk to her now. But I know that Paula — and also Graham — is the exact person to tell you to keep looking for what’s beyond. Graham, to me, saw so much in the natural world–signs, connections, bonds–and Paula, too. For that, I am grateful.

8) I haven’t written a damned thing on here about losing my Papa in January. The world is so full of people we love that have to leave us. I can’t be poetic about it. Sometimes it is just hard. You go in waves — you miss them so hard it seems impossible to fathom that they are gone. You overcome that feeling of impossibility, until it hits you again. I can’t say enough about my Papa. He was a teacher, an icon, a loving human being, mischievous and delightful, and a pioneer in his field. It took us two weeks to write his obituary because what could we possibly say about a man who was responsible for so much? Here is what we came up with.

9) I think that has to be about it for now. I avoid writing about these things because they sting and I can’t find anyway to say I’ve learned anything to help me live my life in a more positive way. Our loved ones just die. We don’t have to accept it, but that is the way of the world.

Support Team In Training and the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society!


Hey everyone!

Since November, I’ve been working with the Team in Training/Leukemia & Lymphoma Society to raise funds supporting research to cure blood cancers. So far I’ve raised almost 60% my goal, but my campaign wraps up in just a few weeks, and I’ll then be running in the BMO Vancouver Half-Marathon in memory of and honor of those with blood cancers. I’m doing something a little special in hopes to get a little closer to that goal. Because I’m raising funds and running in the memory of my writing mentor Graham Joyce, I thought I would turn my writing toward a good cause.

For the next few weeks, if you donate to my TNT campaign, I will write you or someone you love into a special story. Since Graham was a marvelous writer, this strikes me as a perfect way to honor his memory. Please see below for what will come with your donation when you donate $25, $50, or $100 dollars. I will be adding $10 levels shortly, but I’m still hammering out the details.

• If you donate $25, I will name a character after you in my young adult novel draft of “Throwaways.” If you have a catchphrase you like to use, I will make sure that character says it at least once.
• If you donate $50, I will write you a flash piece (under 500 words) with a title you suggest, and one of the characters will bear your name. Which character? I don’t know, but I’m open to discussions–I’ll even name the main character after you.
• For a $100 donation, I will write you a 1,000 word story with the main character bearing your name. I will let you choose the genre and the title, and will have your character say a catchphrase of your choosing.
• If you donate more than $100 and have a special request for me, I will happily work with you to decide on a story incentive of your choice.

After you’ve donated, please send me a note saying you’ve done it and let me know who you want me to commemorate. I will get you your story (or scene from “Throwaways”) within a week. Let’s end blood cancer together!

Thanks again to all of you who have participated in my fundraising efforts so far—it means so much to me, and means so much to so many people with blood cancer.


“Sheela of the Good Shepherd” out at Three-Lobed Burning Eye!


“Sheela of the Good Shepherd,” a story I wrote during my fourth week at Clarion West in 2010, is out now at Three-Lobed Burning Eye. This story took me a year to revise after the workshop, but I was never quite sure if it hit the mark or not. It deals with two issues that are very important to me: female protection, and the systematic oppression of the Magdalene Laundries in Ireland. It’s definitely a horror story. Romie Stott recorded a podcast version of the story, which I very much appreciate.

The issue also features great work from authors Cat Rambo, Leah Thomas, Ferrett Steinmetz, Lloyd Connor, and D. Morgan Ballmer. I hope you’ll take a look and let me know what you think.

I’m also signed up for the Clarion West Write-a-thon, which is entering its final three weeks. If you want to sponsor me or another writer, your donation would help Clarion West fund student scholarships, the well-rounded instructors they bring each year and for the One-Day Workshops. You can sponsor me here.

Norwescon 37


Everybody else is doing it, so why can’t we? Right? Here’s my schedule for Norwescon 37, to be held from April 17-20. I hope to see you there!

Norwescon 37 schedule for Lauren Dixon

Reading: Lauren Dixon
Thu 4:30pm-5:00pm Cascade 1
Probably a new piece, and a piece previously published at Extract(s): “Pink Princess Cape.”
Lauren Dixon

Thursday Afternoon Poetry
Thu 5:00pm-6:00pm Cascade 2
You’ve checked in, you’ve gone through registration, you’re waiting for Opening Ceremonies. Come join other nonconformists, gathered in an out-of-the-way place, doing a couple lines of poetry. Come on; you’ll like it, and we won’t even tell your friends.
Mike Brennan (M), Camille Alexa, Eva-Lise Carlstrom, Lauren Dixon, Lucas Johnson, G. David Nordley

What’s Unique about Writing for Young Adults?
Sat 10:00am-11:00am Cascade 6
Authors who have published young adult short stories or novels will discuss market trends, and how to construct a story for a young adult audience. Given that many young adult speculative fiction novels are actually bought and read by adults, what is young adult fiction doing well that could benefit any writer?
Tori Centanni (M), Cassandra Clarke, Aibhinn, Lauren Dixon, Lish McBride, Cassandra Clarke

The Young Adult Heroine
Sat 3:00pm-4:00pm Cascade 2
How does the new female hero in YA fantasy break traditional stereotypes and offer new challenges for teen readers? Are these female heroes really new or are storytellers doing a kind of role reversal, exchanging handbags for hand grenades? This panel takes an in-depth look at the challenges authors face when creating a female hero for modern day readers.
Tori Centanni (M), Steven Barnes, Lauren Dixon, Karen Kincy



Update, not of the poetic kind, although I’m sure I could dip down into my murmuring soul/soil and find something there. But! Last month I finished the first draft of Throwaways, which has been a torturous journey since I began it three years ago. I’m taking a short break to work on a young adult novel tentatively titled “Fall on Me” (yes, after an R.E.M. song), about a young lady who finds herself at odds with a gang of roving tornadoes…I’m about 14k into it at the moment. When I’m done, I’ll plunge into the revision of Throwaways so I can quickly dust off my hands like it was never part of my life. I’ll be so glad when that book is behind me, although I love it very much, and it helped me power through some tough times. Tomorrow I’ve got a story out at Extract(s), which I’m excited to unleash upon the world. Until then, my fair friends.

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