Am almost finished reading Walking the Clouds, an anthology of Indigenous SFF edited by Grace L. Dillon, and am enjoying it immensely. These stories put all the blurbs and reviews that describe this or that writer or text as “expanding the genre” in perspective. Came to be reading the collection as part of the mapping side-project I am doing: there seem to be some telling distinctions between Canadian and U.S. zombie narratives, and part of the reason has to do, I think, with Indigenous narratives: the narratives themselves, but perhaps also the consciousness of those narratives, or at least of some of the history of colonization, on the part of settler or immigrant Canadian authors. Of course, there is plenty of history in the U.S., but perhaps a different consciousness about it? I am really out on a limb here. I started with something that seemed so clear: maps. But then again, maps! Can I really complain if I find some dragons?
Have also ordered Mitêwâcimowina: Indigenous Science Fiction and Speculative Storytelling, edited by Neal McLeod and published in B.C. by an indigenous press, Theytus Books. And is that not the best cover image ever? Many of the pieces in Walking the Clouds are excerpts from novels rather than short stories, which is somewhat unusual in SFF, the last bastion of short fiction. Or so I tell my students. I will be interested to see whether that is also the case in McLeod’s collection.