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small_Shimmer-22-Cover…was a thing I never expected.

True: I didn’t always like short stories. I found them vexing and entirely too short. I grew up loving novels. I can remember many an afternoon spent hanging off the edge of my bed with a book in my hand. The Wonderful Wizard of Oz, Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, The Lord of the Rings. It was a comfort to hold a thick book and know the story would go on and on.

Also true: In high school, we were offered a class on science fiction. Most people gravitated toward it because they thought it would be an easy A. They were proven quickly wrong, as we were given challenging stories to read. “R.U.R.,” “There Will Come Soft Rains,” “The Inn Outside the World.” I was doubtful I would enjoy the class but when it was over, I found myself sad to leave. I asked if I could buy one of the textbooks because I wanted those stories. I wanted to read all the stories we hadn’t explored in class. “Bulletin,” “Spaceship Earth,” “Who’s There?” The teacher had to speak with the principal about selling a book — they never did such things. I still have that book; it’s here on my shelf.

Shimmer taught me not only how to love short fiction even more, it helped me in writing my own. Shimmer was unique, it’s challenging, and never boring. In Beth, I’ve found one of my people.

Thank you for your support with Shimmer — thank you for putting us on the 2019 Hugo Award ballot. We only ever dreamed such a thing was possible, and now here we are.