A while ago, I picked up a pile of books for free from a second-hand book stall. They were on the ‘recycle’ pile, headed for pulp. I loved the covers, so brought them home.
One was Muriel Spark’s Robinson.
What a bizarre, fascinating, creepy novel this was. It’s about a woman who is shipwrecked on an island called Robinson, after the sole inhabitant. He’s a manipulative, brilliant, obsessive man who lives, in part, from the salvage of wrecked ships.
One moment stood out for me, and sat in my backbrain waiting for the right story to come along. The main character refuses to wear the clothes of the dead, or to touch any of the other salvage. Robinson, meanwhile, has no problems with either.
I wondered; what sort of person would live only on the food left over in dead people’s houses?
I know. It’s a very odd place, my backbrain
This inspiration came to roost in my story “Eating the Alice Cake”, which I’ve sold to Ellen Datlow for her Mad Hatters and March Hares anthology for Tor. All stories inspired by Alice in Wonderland! Cannot wait for this one. Look at the amazing writers I’m sharing space with!
Gentle Alice Kris Dikeman (poem)
My Own Invention Delia Sherman
Lily-White & The Thief of Lesser Night C.S.E. Cooney
Conjoined Jane Yolen
Mercury Priya Sharma
Some Kind of Wonderland Richard Bowes
Alis Stephen Graham Jones
All the King’s Men Jeffrey Ford
Run, Rabbit Angela Slatter
In Memory of a Summer’s Day Matthew Kressel
Sentence Like a Saturday Seanan McGuire
Worrity, Worrity Andy Duncan
Eating the Alice Cake Kaaron Warren
The Queen of Hats Ysabeau Wilce
A Comfort, One Way Genevieve Valentine
The Flame After the Candle Catherynne M. Valente
Moon, Memory, Muchness Katherine Vaz
Run, Rabbit, Run Jane Yolen (poem)