When I wrote Let the Bugs Work Themselves Out, I was delirious with fever, caused by what doctors want me to believe was a common flu, but what I am convinced was a medical conspiracy to test a new strain of Black-Death-Hell-Anthrax-Ebola-Pox. It was more than a fever. My perception twisted into weird little skews and everything felt grotesque and creepy. You know that feeling you had while watching Eraserhead? That was an actual symptom of this "flu".
I knew it wasn't wise to work on my novel in this state. Instead, I propped my iPad on my lap and feverishly typed the first two-thirds of this story.
I had already been planning to write a story specifically for the 'Hello, World' mini-issue of The Esteemed Journal. Writing to a specific topic and market is nothing but fun, and 'Hello, World' was a perfect fit. I combined my many years' professional experience in the computer industry with my scientific background as a childhood entomological "researcher", and adding in the touch of illness-fueled insanity, I produced a draft which I fully planned to scrap.
In fact, it turned out to be a good start, and it became my first paid, published story. Of all the things I have written, I am most proud of these 1600 words. I hope the medical conspirators perfect their little "virus" and sell it to me in pill form, because I could use a few more fever-induced writing sessions.
I most hope my little homage to the ants will karmatically make up for all the colonies I angered as a child. (Ever seen an entire sidewalk corner covered in a moving mat of black? I have!) Mayhaps, with luck, the uplifted intelligent ants we someday create will be friendly and forgiving towards humans. Or perhaps they will think it funny to poke at our buildings and watch us run out, screaming and attacking anything that moves.
Either way, what I'd most like is to sit down and have a conversation with a colony like the one in my story. We keep searching the stars, but we'll never find anyone until we realize alien intelligence exists right here, on our own enormous planet.
Luna Lindsey writes every single flavor of speculative fiction (yes, even that one), though she focuses on urban fantasy and horror involving faeries. Her novel, Emerald City Dreamer, is available on Amazon Kindle. Her blog gets updated every now and then at www.lunalindsey.com.