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New Article: The best historical books about women in science

I have a new article out today from Shepherd.com! 📚👩‍🔬

Shepherd is a book recommendation website that relies on lists compiled by authors, allowing you to find reliable recs on specific topics ranging from “The best unexpected love stories in historical romance” to “The best books to introduce you to Black London.” (I really like their “Browse by Wikipedia topic” search function – super handy for finding research recs!)

For my list, I shared five of my favourite historical books featuring women scientists (both real and fictional)! These include fantastic books by Carrie Brown, Marie Benedict, Catherine Chung, Tracy Chevalier, and Margot Lee Shetterly. You can read the whole post here.

New Article: 5 Ways to Make Your Historical Fiction Ring True

5 Ways to Make Your Historical Fiction Ring True

I had a new article out this week in Writers Digest on writing historical fiction!

Would you like to write historical fiction? Are you feeling overwhelmed by the prospect of research, or unsure how to get into the mindset of a character from a different era? Maybe one of these tips will help. You can read the full article here!

New Article: OHP Playlist on Largehearted Boy

I had such fun putting together this list for the blog Largehearted Boy’s awesome “Book Notes” series, where authors highlight songs that influenced the writing of their book! I got to talk about some of the songs I listened to on loop while writing OHP, and also share my full writing playlist. (Spoilers: there are a lot of film soundtracks, lol.)

You can read the full article here, or listen to my full (seven hour long, whoof) writing playlist for Our Hideous Progeny here!

New Article: Writers Digest Q&A

C. E. McGill: On Revisiting Classic Science Fiction

I recently had a Q&A come out in Writers Digest! ✏️ I talked about the writing process, the publishing process, & bringing OHP from its initial stages as my final year project in university to a finished novel. You can read the full interview here!

New Article: On Victorian Paleoart & the Birth of a Sci-Fi Novel

I had another article come out recently, this one from Literary Hub!

Do you like pictures of dinosaurs? What about real old pictures of dinosaurs? Want to hear how said pictures inspired my Frankenstein spin-off novel, Our Hideous Progeny? Read the full article here!

New Article: “Unnatural Bodies” for Crimereads

I have a new essay out from Crimereads today! I had tremendous fun writing this one, exploring some of the queer history of Frankenstein/horror in general, and how that informed my writing of Mary in Our Hideous Progeny.

(And of course, I had to touch on Susan Stryker’s legendary essay “My Words to Victor Frankenstein Above the Village of Chamounix: Performing Transgender Rage“!)

You can read my essay for CrimeReads here. And don’t forget – Our Hideous Progeny is finally out today in the US, available in a bookstore near you!

OUR HIDEOUS PROGENY: Out now!

Sticky post

For readers of Circe or Ariadne, a brilliant literary revisiting of Mary Shelley’s classic Frankenstein with a fresh, queer, provocative twist.

Years ago, Mary’s great uncle—dropout medical student Victor Frankenstein—disappeared in the Arctic. Now, in 1853, she and her husband Henry live in London, struggling to make a name for themselves as paleontologists.

Unfortunately, in a world where scientific success requires wealth and connections, they don’t stand a chance: Mary, the illegitimate daughter of a housemaid, with a sharp mind and a sharper tongue; and Henry, a recently-fired geologist better known for his gambling problems than his radical theories. But when Mary discovers some old family papers that reveal the truth of her great-uncle’s past, she comes up with a plan—one that will pay their debts, prove Henry’s theories right, and finally get her some of the respect she goddamn deserves.

They’re going to make a monster, and not just any monster—they’re going to create a plesiosaur.

It’s weird, it’s queer, and it’s here in bookshops near you! OUR HIDEOUS PROGENY is my debut novel, a spiritual sequel to Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein and a love letter to women in science and the fascinating history of Victorian paleoart.

Are you a fan of Victorian mad science? Gothic gays? Women who are angry, and ambitious, and covered in blood? Then OHP may be for you!

An image button that says "Add Our Hideous Progeny on Goodreads!" Links to Goodreads.

Note: Our Hideous Progeny is a Gothic novel, and may contain content that is distressting to some. View the trigger warnings/content warnings here.

Awards Eligibility 2021

So, after several years spent watching ‘awards eligibility posts’ pop up every year on social media and wondering ‘What’s that about? Ah well, doesn’t concern me anyway,’ I was finally forced to put on my Big Writer Hat and learn — because I had a short story published this year!

TtBTtBTBLB (as I lovingly call it) is a story of gods and sacrifices, mountains and mental illness — and what happens when the person picked as sacrifice is unfortunately all-too-willing to go. (Content warning below if you need them.) It’s weird, queer, and dear to my heart, and if you have a moment and/or you’re currently considering nominations for awards, I’d be thrilled if you gave it a read.

P. S.: Content warnings for “Things to Bring, Things to Burn, Things Best Left Behind”: a (non-graphic) near-suicide-attempt on the first page, suicidal ideation throughout, and several brief, implied mentions of transphobia and an emotionally abusive parent.

— CEM

Author Spotlight: “THINGS TO BRING, THINGS TO BURN, THINGS BEST LEFT BEHIND” (Fantasy Magazine, Issue #63)

Hi all! As of today, my new story, “Things to Bring, Things to Burn, Things Best Left Behind” is available to read online at Fantasy Magazine, along with an author spotlight on yours truly! I was truly humbled and delighted to be given this chance to talk about my writing process and the various works and ideas which inspired TtBTtBTBLB, and interviewer Reece Michaelson’s questions were simply a pleasure to answer. Check it out if you can!*

* After checking out the following content warnings, of course:

Content warnings for the Author Spotlight: non-graphic discussion of depression, suicide, and suicidal ideation

Content warnings for “Things to Bring, Things to Burn, Things Best Left Behind:” a (non-graphic) near-suicide-attempt on the first page, suicidal ideation throughout, and several brief, implied mentions of transphobia and an emotionally abusive parent.

— CEM

New Story: “THINGS TO BRING, THINGS TO BURN, THINGS BEST LEFT BEHIND” (Fantasy Magazine, Issue #63)

Image description: a picture of the cover image of issue #63 of Fantasy Magazine, which depicts a robed wizard-like figure drawn in a graffiti art style as well as the text: C. E. McGill, Tonya Liburd, Megan Chee, Marissa Lingen, Magaly Garcia, and Maria Zoccola. Edited by Arley Song and Christie Yant. /end description

Hi all! I’m thrilled to announce that my new story, “Things to Bring, Things to Burn, Things Best Left Behind” just came out in Fantasy Magazine!

TtBTtBTBLB (as I affectionately call it) is a sort of speculative parable about gods and sacrifices, mountains and mental illness—and what happens when the unfortunate soul picked as a sacrifice is all too-willing to go. It’s here, it’s queer, it’s dear to my heart, and it comes with a HEFTY series of content warnings (see below, if you don’t mind the spoilers).

It’s such an honour to be featured in the new reboot of Fantasy, and in such fantastic (ha! Fantast-ic, get it?) company, too. This is also my first ever publication in a pro-rate magazine, so I’m doubly excited! TtBTtBTBLB will be available to read online for free on January 5th, or you can buy issue #63 of Fantasy Magazine for $2.99 and read it right now.

Stay tuned for more yelling later this week when my author spotlight comes out, too—aaaaaaah!!

— CEM

[Trigger/content warnings for “Things to Bring, Things to Burn, Things Best Left Behind:” a (non-graphic) near-suicide-attempt on the first page, suicidal ideation throughout, and several brief, implied mentions of transphobia and an emotionally abusive parent.]

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