SFF Stories Award Eligibility

Hi everyone!

It’s award nomination season in the science fiction/fantasy field, and I am thrilled that I have some eligible stories for 2018. I’d be honored if you’d take a read.


“The Kite Maker,” a science fiction short story (7,100 words) published in Tor.com.

After aliens arrive on earth, humans do the unthinkable out of fear. When an alien walks into a human kite maker’s store, coveting her kites, the human struggles with her guilt over her part in the alien massacres, while neo-Nazis draw a violent line between alien and human.

N.K. Jemisin said of it, “Such a powerful story.”

It can be found here: https://www.tor.com/2018/08/29/the-kite-maker-brenda-peynado/


“The Dreamers,” a fantasy/magical realism short story (6,000 words) published in The Southern Review.

In a world where people can stay awake for most of their lives and then sleep all their lives’ sleep at once, a high school girl must wake her boyfriend from his sleep coma in time for prom, though her traitorous ex-best-friend stands in her way, the town’s Dreamcatcher is out prowling, and if she’s not careful, she could succumb to a sleep coma as well.

It can be found on Project Muse or in the Nebula’s reading list. https://www.sfwa.org/forum/topic/13388-the-dreamers-brenda-peynado/ https://muse.jhu.edu/article/690478

“What We Lost,” a fantasy story  (1,600 words) published in The Sun.

When a mysterious leader gets elected, promising to make the country better, citizens’s magically start to lose part of their bodies.



Chicago Tribune’s Nelson Algren Award

I am thrilled to be this year’s winner of the Chicago Tribune‘s Nelson Algren Award, for my story “The Great Escape,” a magical story about a young woman’s relationship with her reclusive aunt. My story will be published next week in Printers Row Journal, the Chicago Tribune’s literary supplement, and an interview will post on Thursday.

Congratulations to the finalists as well, including my friend Anne Valente!


Writers at Work Fellowship Winner

Author Ann Hood chose my story, “We Work in Miraculous Cages,” as the first place winner for a Writers at Work Conference fellowship.  The story will be published in Quarterly West, and I will give a reading at the conference.  I am so excited to head to Utah! Thank you to Ann Hood, who said such nice things about the story, and the people at W@W.

“‘We Work in Miraculous Cages’ took my breath away. It’s raw, honest, and revelatory in its portrayal of life now for an entire generation. The powerful writing throughout culminates in an absolutely stunning final scene.” -Ann Hood


“We Were in the City” in LitRagger

Litragger is featuring my story, “We Were in the City,” originally published in The Threepenny Review. Thanks to Adam Lefton for featuring it, and to Wendy Lesser for first including it. Read on for attics and basements, vindictive lemonade stands, and a couple back from The City.


Also, you can download LitRagger’s really neat app which hosts ebook versions of your favorite literary magazines.