The beauty of speculative fiction is that talking about the impossible, the improbable, shines a light on who we are in the real world, and who other people might be. An archipelago of other experiences is out there, every book a doorway, waiting for the reader to step through.

Rene Sears

The Short Version

GREETINGS! I’m Sia (sigh-ah), and I’m a quadruple-A – autistic with ADHD, asexual, and agender (pronouns she/her) – with a chronic pain condition called fibromyalgia. I’m a neopagan witchling with a love for pop culture magic, unicorns, and terrible puns. I think alliteration is awesome and lists are the best. I’m a hopepunk with rainbow hair.

And I love books. Specifically SFF, and here on Every Book a Doorway I focus on diverse fantasy, science fiction, and a little horror, in that order. I’m always on the lookout for new perspectives and ‘outside the box’ concepts or execution: the unusual and beautiful, the awe-full and avante-garde, the surprising and subversive – but I enjoy the right flavour of enchantingly familiar, too! I’m passionate about worldbuilding and picky about prose, and you’re unlikely to find me reading many of the Big Names. I prefer searching for, and boosting, the stories and storytellers who deserve far more love than they’re getting!

Don’t forget to check out my Unmissable SFF of 2024 list, and I hope you enjoy your visit here!

To discuss promos, interviews, street teams, collaborations, etc, please go to my Review Policy page.

The Long Version

When I ran away from home at 13 and stayed gone, all I took with me were two bags of books. (Clothes? A toothbrush? Who needs those???) Five years later, when I vanished again the day after my final exam at 18, my priorities were the same, even if my collection had grown: that time it took two suitcases to fit all the books I absolutely needed to keep with me.

The only thing that’s changed in all the years since is that I’ve stopped pulling vanishing acts. Well—that, and I’d need far more than two suitcases to shift all the books I own now.

Maybe most people mean it metaphorically when they say they wouldn’t be here without the stories they love: I mean it literally. My life’s been…interesting. Let’s leave it at that. But not only would I have not survived it without books, I wouldn’t have wanted to. Books have been my refuge and my inspiration, my hope and my armour, my reason to keep going, for as long as I can remember. I need stories more than I need air—because a life without stories wouldn’t be worth living.

And since the only thing almost as good as reading is getting to share and talk about the books you love with others—behold! A blog.

Books are magic, and with few exceptions, that’s what I read – fantasy, some sci-fi, and a little horror, the queerer the better. I want books with velvet prose and wondrous worldbuilding and stories that are decadent and clever, sharp and brilliant, soft and breathtaking. I want books that push or completely ignore the bounds of the conventional, books that are hidden gems, books written by storytellers even stranger than I am.

And I want to share them with you.

I’m afraid you will not find many of the traditional Big Names celebrated here: no Brandon Sanderson, or GR Martin, or Patrick Rothfuss. No Joe Abercrombie or Jim Butcher or Steven Erikson. No Neil Gaiman or Glen Cook or Mark Lawrence. Sorry. But if you’re looking for reads like those, most of the internet will be happy to accommodate you. I wish you well!

But if instead you’re searching for the weird and wonderful, then stranger, be welcome.

This blog is for the dreamers, the world-walkers, the strangers and the witches; the ones for whom reading is not a way of life, it is life. It’s not a very pretty blog, but it’s a guide to the doors between worlds, and I hope it’ll help you find some of the doors that take you home.

If you are a monster, stand up.
If you are a monster, a trickster, a fiend,
If you’ve built a steam-powered wishing machine
If you have a secret, a dark past, a scheme,
If you kidnap maidens or dabble in dreams
Come stand by me.

If you have been broken, stand up.
If you have been broken, abandoned, alone
If you have been starving, a creature of bone
If you live in a tower, a dungeon, a throne
If you weep for wanting, to be held, to be known,
Come stand by me.

If you are a savage, stand up.
If you are a witch, a dark queen, a black knight,
If you are a mummer, a pixie, a sprite,
If you are a pirate, a tomcat, a wright,
If you swear by the moon and you fight the hard fight,
Come stand by me.

If you are a devil, stand up.
If you are a villain, a madman, a beast,
If you are a strowler, a prowler, a priest,
If you are a dragon come sit at our feast,
For we all have stripes, and we all have horns,
We all have scales, tails, manes, claws and thorns
And here in the dark is where new worlds are born.
Come stand by me.

Catherynne M. Valente, A Monstrous Manifesto

(And yes, the blog title is very much a homage to Seanan McGuire’s Every Heart a Doorway. That should probably tell you everything you need to know about how we run things here!)