An Open Letter to My Lactose Intolerant Friend Regarding my COVID Intolerance, published in (oh my goodness, is this really true?!?!) McSweeney’s Internet Tendency on September 30, 2020. A dream come true in the worst year ever? Amazing. Also, they let me write a biography, which was super intimidating since everyone else on McSweeney’s used to write for Saturday Night Live or do stand up comedy with Seinfeld.
Grork Dentist, published in Luna Station Quarterly, Issue 037. This amazing magazine makes an author feel special, so you can also view my author bio and author interview. Beware, the author interview page does have pictures of teeth and dental implements. *shudder*.
Works in Progress:
I’ve also got a few works in progress in various states of completion. Brief summaries are below, but contact me if you’d like more information. For my published technical publications please visit my Google Scholar page.
The Fisherman, by Johanna Levene
Fantasy short short story.
The Fisherman is a mystical creature who lives under an overpass near a wide slow river. When children come to fish for the first time he will appear, if the conditions are right, and feed on their childhood wonder. The story is reminiscent of Neil Gaiman’s short story Troll Bridge.
Hallelujah, by Johanna Levene
Fantasy novel in second draft
Hallelujah explores Heaven in the midst of unplanned institutional change. The supernatural setting and unexpected characters are similar to Lev Grossman’s The Magicians, Erin Morgenstern’s The Night Circus, and Steven King’s The Dark Tower series. Like King’s and Grossman’s works, Hallelujah has series potential.
Sean King, a video game developer about to revolutionize the interface between reality and computers, is killed walking to a press conference. He arrives in Heaven: an institution dedicated to advancing the greatness of humanity and not a reward for a life well lived. Sean is a bit of a mini-celebrity in Heaven because of his status as a former client, chosen as a person destined for greatness, but clients don’t usually end up in Heaven. This anomaly along other disruptive changes are impacting the organization’s stability. As Sean becomes enmeshed in Heavenly society his nontraditional abilities and his clashes with the head of Sacrifice – the newest faction in Heaven – may be the portent of a new regime.
Christmas Quietus, by Johanna Levene
Women’s Fiction novel in progress
Christmas Quietus glimpses into the life of Anna and Grant Proctor over five Christmas Eves and five Christmas Days as they grow from a couple to a family of four. Like any family, they have to navigate the concentrated opinions, passive-aggressive comments, traditions and expectations of their extended families during the holiday celebrations. Underneath the familial tensions is a growing uneasiness in the world, and Anna begins to think her brother’s doomsday scenarios are less like paranoia and more like prophesy.