Hi, friends! I just signed a contract to be in J. Blackmore's new book from Circlet Press, Journey to the Center of Desire!
My story, Journey to the Disappearing Sea, imagines a much more active role for "little Gräuben," the love interest of the narrator of Verne's original Journey to the Center of the Earth. Gräuben deserves it, too. In the original, it's clear that she's brave and learned and every bit as deserving of adventure as Axl. You'll perhaps forgive me if I made her much more awesome than he was, and narrated in his voice, so he's the one who gets to tell you how cool she is?
I really love playing with classic works this way. My first story for J. Blackmore, "The Artist's Retreat," which was published in her collection, Whispers in Darkness: Lovecraftian Erotica, marks a turning point in my mental history of my own writing. It was studying Lovecraft, and imitating his style enough to sound authentic, that began to free me from the overly spare journalistic style I'd developed from years of writing articles. It gave me access to a tone I hadn't allowed myself for a long time, one that now feels essential to my voice.
I had an equally great time with Verne. And in case it's not clear by now, Ms. Blackmore has an enviable relationship with classic texts of all varieties. I'm not in these, but I can also recommend her takes on Austen and Carroll.