Hey folks! Just a quick little note to say that Shaenon Garrity and I will (assuming all goes well) be making one of our exceptionally rare joint convention appearances at the 50th Anniversary of MileHiCon 2018 at the Denver Tech Center Hyatt Regency, from October 19th to the 21st. As yet the schedule has not been finalized, and there will be no centralized vending area, so I can’t give you any specific place to find us; however, check here for updates as I get them!

Second thing I wanted to discuss with this post is changing the schedule that content arrives on this blog. I’ve been sticking to monthly somethings for going on six years now, but as Skin Horse enters its twilight years I am forced to think about life after comics, and whether I want to have a go at getting professionally published. As I explore these options, it might be best for me to keep the bulk of my work in as saleable a condition as possible for a time. Posting work here, alas, counts out the overwhelming majority of publishers who’d want first publishing rights. So, while I figure out what the future looks like, I will be posting fiction here less regularly. Rest assured I’ll still be able to be reached through the same contact methods here as before, and hey, there are still going to be some pieces whose natural home is a writing blog rather than a professional publication.

Hope to see some of you in Denver, and thanks for sticking with me as I embark on what I hope is a new chapter in my creative life.

“Things were better around here before Athebaxis the Lizard God popped in and enslaved us all, forcing us to mine deep underground for his dirty rocks,” said the boy.

“That seems like a reasonable conclusion,” I replied.

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One day, Dog was out playing in the muddy yard after a day and a night of rain. And when Man brought him inside and saw that Dog did leave great dirty footprints all the hell over the kitchen floor, Man was most vexed.

“Dog,” said Man, “You spend your time playing outside, and when I bring you in, you sit and rest while I am down upon my hands and knees with a Mardi Gras brand paper towel, wiping up all the mud you have tracked into the house! What say you to that?”

Dog pondered for a moment, then said, “It is you who care that the floors are dirty.”

And Man was Enlightened.

I would like to start out by saying that I am immensely confused by this whole situation.

Honored, to be certain. This is the highest accolade I’ve ever received as a professional writer. And this dinner is, wow. Top-notch. It’s funny how the more expensive the dinner is, the smaller the birds you’re eating get. You’d think the reverse, I guess? Anyway, it’s a lot better than the chicken wings and Leinenkugels over which this manuscript was originally conceived.

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We need to talk about priorities!

maybe you can’t see or hear or smell it

but something to eat definitely ran into that metal pipe and I know because I saw it and heard it and smelt it and it’s. still. there.

I know I know I know I usually pee about now

but the thing you have to understand about peeing is

I can literally do it whenever I want

I can do it:
on the floor
on the wall
on the couch
on the bed
I have never been required to show you exactly how versatile I can be


It’ll be fine it’ll be fine it’ll be fine seriously it’ll be fine I’ll pee later

Don’t get me wrong, it’s not ideal, but

if you really
think about it I
think you’ll agree
with me when I
say that
it’s not wise to
pass this up


this is food we’re talking about

Git Gud

Dr. Chris Sanders was awoken from unsettling dreams of pain and humiliation by the unicorn climbing in through his window.

The unicorn proceeded to trip over a table, sending a small assortment of collectible figurines tumbling to the hardwood floor.

“Balls,” muttered the unicorn. “Balls on an uncle-humping chimp.”

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Boy, time does fly, don’t it? Admittedly this post would have been arguably more impactful had it been done back in October on the actual five year anniversary of this blog, but I just straight-up didn’t notice. In a sort of celebration, let’s look at the way I used to write twenty whole years ago when I was writing Mundementia One, my very first story universe (although to be fair I kind of copied a lot of theme and flavor from Phil and Kaja Foglio’s Illuminati University). I think you’ll find my writing is a bit more restrained nowadays, and this is probably for the best; I used to write with a lot of painfully self-conscious wackiness. Still, I miss being this free with my prose, writing because it was fun to write rather than in the service of some imagined goal. This was the opening of the 1997 Thanksgiving holiday special, simply entitled Black Friday

“‘Burgers Cooked The Way You Like Them,'” reads Feeb, sweetly. “‘In Hell.'”

I blink placidly at the blazing red neon sign, festooned with tortured demon-faces and accentuated with naked gas flames which spit, crackle, and roar into the partly-cloudy November sky.

“Burgers… cooked… in Hell.”

“Sure,” says Feeb, turning to me. “Some people prefer them to the fried kind. Matter of personal preference, as far as I’m concerned, but, hey.”

“Burgers…” I repeat, “Cooked…”

I swallow.

“In Hell.” I conclude.

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Sometimes it is hard to be funny.

But let’s back up. Let’s talk about interactive fiction for a moment. You know, those games that were pretty big in the 80’s because the graphics capacity of the imagination was so, so much more than the 8-bit Nintendo Entertainment Systems that were the state of the art at the time. The ones that described the room you were in using plain text and then gave you a little command prompt you could use to (hopefully) tell the computer what your protagonist was attempting to do. The ones that mostly died out as people became jaded to the format but whose spirit has been kept alive across the years by the small but dedicated interactive fiction online fandom.

Let’s talk about Once and Future.

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“Pork, Tenacity”

This one goes out to all my quote-unquote friends at Nielsen Media Research. Merry Christmas, guys.

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I was right in the middle of caving in the side of the thing’s skull with a four-pound chunk of cold-forged tempered steel when the chime came in on my messaging earring.

“Rina,” said the Prior on the other end of the ethereal connection, “I’m, uh, wondering if you could help me with a case.”

“Sure,” I replied, shattering another naked spine with a deft backhand swing. “Just let me take care of a few things.”

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