DM: Tell us a little about your newest collection, The Inner City.The Inner City is an insidious bunch of stories, with dog-human hybrids bred for a new servant class; with a sneaky under-city that's controlling traffic and parking spots and a whole lot more; with people growing out of the soil; with things that are certainly surprising and very often alarming. It deals with change, with evolution in the course of a lifetime, with the need to adapt, with the impossibility of knowing what the right change is.
DM: What's it like working with Chizine Publications?
Of course, they’re Canadian, so I think they get good health coverage. That means they’re happy. On the other hand, I think it’s too cold up north. So maybe they never go outdoors and thus can spend all their time working with books. Healthily.
DM: Also, feel free to elaborate on winning the O Henry award (so we can fangirl squee over you).I was running out the door to get a tattoo when I got a phone saying I’d won an O. Henry award. I was very careful to be really impressed, but I wasn’t sure I’d heard it right. I looked up the name of the person who called, and yes—it all fit.
I had no warning about this. In the following years, people would tell me I was listed as a finalist for Best American Short Stories, or Pushcart or other O. Henry awards. I’ve stopped checking the list at the back of the anthologies. There’s no glory in it; all those near misses start seeming deliberate! I’ve been a finalist for the Iowa, the Bellwether Prize, and the Shirley Jackson award. I am proud to be able to say all this. But I would have been even prouder if….