SFWA! – Raven Oak


When I was very young, I fell into fantastical worlds the way a young girl yearns for a pony (which I also loved!). I devoured films like Legend, Willow, Red Sonja, and Labyrinth. It wasn’t until I was twelve that I discovered the classics of science fiction & fantasy books, such as those by Ursula K. Le Guin, Anne McCaffrey, Ray Bradbury, and Isaac Asimov.

Imagine a twelve year old me stumbling upon some of these greats online before the Internet was properly the Internet. As our limited hours allowed, I’d log into GEnie, a BBS that had a board for SFWA members and SF/F readers to connect. Talking with authors and other readers painted a very vivid picture in mind of what I thought the life of an author was like.

I’ve been published since 2015, but some days, I still don’t feel like an author. I’m not hugely famous (most authors aren’t), I only have a handful of books out (if I don’t count anthologies), and my royalty checks/payments definitely place me in the earlier part of my career than the latter. Most days, I’m fine with this–writing is a marathon, and every day I’m closer to achieving my goals and dreams–but some days it’s difficult to remember why I write.

Today is NOT a difficult day!

When I was twelve and writing my first full-length novel, I had two goals (besides get published):
1) Have my cover art painted by Michael Whelan
2) Sell enough stories to gain membership into SFWA, the Science Fiction & Fantasy Writers of America

Sadly, Michael Whelan retired, so goal #1 is quite unlikely–though we’re Facebook friends so never say never. But today, I received my official welcome email congratulating me on my acceptance into SFWA!

Yep, that was me earlier today. I spent a good few hours randomly bursting into tears. This is one of those huge, bucket list items for most SF/F authors. Achievement unlocked!

This also opens so many doors for me–ones I know I haven’t even thought about or realized yet–so I’m looking forward to the rest of 2018 and the rest of my writing future!

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