“Still Marching,” a tale of our times

Best Lesbian Erotica of the Year, Volume 3, edited by Sacchi Green, is out, and it includes my story “Still Marching.”

On Saturday, December 8th, there will be a release event for the book on the Lesfic Reading Group Facebook page. A list of all author posts about the anthology is here at the editor’s blog: Commenters on any of these posts will be entered in a drawing to win an ebook copy of the anthology.

Though I wrote “Still Marching” in 2018, I conceived the idea in January 2017, shortly after the first Philadelphia Women’s March, which I attended. I was with local friends, some of whom I had known since college in the 1980s, and we laughed bitterly and knowingly about signs that read, “I can’t believe I still have to protest this sh*t.” It warmed my heart to see women with gray hair and white hair still out on the streets, still standing up for their beliefs, and to see young women and families with children out on the streets as well.

The march sparked the initial idea for “Still Marching,” in which two older women are reunited after years apart because of the Women’s March. It’s the first time I’ve ever attempted to include contemporary events in a story, and the first time I’ve included details from a historical setting that I actually remember.

The fun part of the story, though, turned out to be exploring the divergent lives Mavis and Rhiannon lived after they drifted apart in their early twenties. Neither has arrived at the expected career. Both were influenced by family, and found family, to try paths that might not have occurred to them when they were college students. They’ve both experienced a lot, emotionally and politically, some of it humorous. Their views on the world and their place in it have changed. And yet they’re still activists, they still have feelings in common, and they still have hope.

I hope the story gives hope to readers as well.

About Victoria Janssen

Victoria Janssen [she, her] currently writes cozy space opera for Kalikoi. The novella series A Place of Refuge begins with Finding Refuge: Telepathic warrior Talia Avi, genius engineer Miki Boudreaux, and augmented soldier Faigin Balfour fought the fascist Federated Colonies for ten years, following the charismatic dissenter Jon Churchill. Then Jon disappeared, Talia was thought dead, and Miki and Faigin struggled to take Jon’s place and stay alive. When the FC is unexpectedly upended, Talia is reunited with her friends and they are given sanctuary on the enigmatic planet Refuge. The trio of former guerillas strive to recover from lifetimes of trauma, build new lives on a planet with endless horizons, and forge tender new connections with each other.
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