Look for my short story “Scintilla” in the July/August 2015 double issue of Alfred Hitchcock’s Mystery Magazine (AHMM). The hard-copy issue hits newsstands next Tuesday, May 26, but digital issues are (mostly) available this week.
I consider "Scintilla" to be one of my Italian stories, even though it doesn't feature the detective I introduced in The Marshal of the Borgo. I was trying to duplicate the experience of reading foreign-language mystery stories that had been translated into English. As typically happens with me these days, the story ended up being a paranormal/crime hybrid. I'm kind of surprised AHMM took it, but they sometimes like weird stuff.
Submissions stats: I finished this story sometime in November 2013. I submitted it to AHMM in November 2013, and didn’t hear from them until they bought it in July 2014, eight months later. So it’s appearing ten months after acceptance, seventeen months since writing and submission. Payment was $276, plus an additional $69 prepayment for the right to republish in a future AHMM anthology. That came to a total of $345, or about 7 cents a word.
If you are a fan of the old Nero Wolfe series by Rex Stout, you might want to a grab a copy of this issue. It's the annual AHMM that features the winner of the Black Orchid Novella Contest, a competition that challenges writers to emulate the style of the old Wolfe books and short stories.
Yes, I will eventually release an e-book version of "Scintilla," which I’ll offer free to people on my list. If you’d rather wait for the free copy, please join my e-newsletter.