Cryptids Anonymous thematically explores the anxieties of Canadian queer millennials through speculative short stories. From alien abductions that prompt questions of gender identity to cosmic horror encroaching on a queer “found family,” each short story uses a literary writing style alongside speculative elements to highlight the queer millennial experience. In “Cryptids Anonymous,” a recovering alcoholic tries to pull himself out of rock bottom by hunting for Big Foot in the Lumsden Valley. “Blood Moon Night” follows nineteen-year-old Lydia who attends a lackluster Tinder date on the ominous night of Blood Moon. In “These Hands Build Pyres,” all Howell Runn wants is to be a star, but a burning planet and a life-or-death situation put his dreams in precarity. The titular character of “Chelsey’s Wedding,” has always gone with the flow, including accepting the marriage proposal of her childhood friend, Dylan. But after a strange alien encounter, Chelsey questions what she truly wants and who she truly is. In these stories, and the rest of the collection, realistic characters are faced with unrealistic experiences to dig into the thematic heart of what it means to be a queer millennial in Canada.
Short stories, Canadian Literature, Queer,
Master of Fine Arts (M.F.A.)