For me, this story hit its stride once the stales were raised by introducing a personal reason for the main character’s work. Just a craft note here for me to reflect on.
This short story, published by Tor.com, centers on Oona, a women with mapmaking skills. Someone who, by mapping the land, literally transforms it and tames it so that Easterners can travel to and through the land and exploit it. The story, and the language, are steeped in history and present Oona’s story as an alternative telling of how the West was tamed, how Manifest Destiny destroyed what it sought.
Excellent throughout, though the story really found its footing about 1/3 of the way through. Recommended!