Jeff VanderMeer • February 2nd, 2010 @ 1:16 pm • News

Just a fraction of our library of strange short fiction–there’re another ten to fifteen shelves not shown. Ann and I are beginning to read for a “big book of weird” we’re editing for Grove Atlantic. It’ll be 750,000 words, covering 100 years. To be published in November.

28 Responses to “Weird”

  1. eric orchard says:

    …and now I’ll be trying to decipher all these books the rest of the day.

  2. JH Robinson says:


  3. SMD says:

    Mr. Vandermeer,
    Would it be possible to get a list of the titles you’re working with? Some of the titles are hard to see in the pictures and I’m working on a paper I’m presenting in the UK in July discussing New Weird, Bizarro, and other weird movements in the last decade…so…you have me very intrigued. I will, of course, be talking about you behind your back at the conference where said paper is being read, but, I’ll be saying good things, so that’s okay, right?

    Anyway, let me know.


  4. Ben says:

    That sounds like an ambitious project that could lead to a wonderful book. I’m looking forward to it.

    I hope you’ll take a look at Vincent O’Sullivan’s “Master of Fallen Years,” a gem of early 20th century weird fiction that’s rarely anthologized these days. It’s probably in one of your anthologies, but just in case, here’s a link to it in THE BEST SHORT STORIES OF 1921 (ed. Edward J. O’Brien): (Google Books link)

  5. Jeff VanderMeer says:

    We will be looking at everything.

    Shaun–email me at [email protected].

  6. Nadine says:

    You’re making me miss my bookshelves. All my books are currently packed up in boxes in storage, and that’s sad. :(

    I see books there that I’d like to acquire. Time to make my birthday list, I think.

  7. J M McDermott says:

    I hope the fraction not present includes on-line fiction! For a while there I was getting my dose of strange from Farrago’s Wainscott and Clarkesworld and felt no need for more brain medicine.

    I wonder if it wouldn’t be neat to include a list of the on-line markets that you’ll be reading, if only because that list will be so easily reproduced elsewhere as an introductory source of strange to the uninitiated.

  8. Jeff VanderMeer says:

    We make no distinctions between online and printed fiction. I say again…we will be reading everything. But online markets don’t look so interesting in a photograph. ;)

    Just so it’s clear. We’re reading everything. LOL.

    (Nadine–we IS in yer BOxes Readin’ YER stuff.)

  9. Darja MC says:

    A ‘big book of weird’? This news has made my day!

  10. Jeff VanderMeer says:

    Darja–thanks. It’s going to be intense. Ann and I will be spending every moment spent reading and re-reading.


  11. Larry says:

    So where’s your copy of Eye of Argon? Didn’t see it in the pics…

  12. Terry Weyna says:

    Okay, that goes straight onto my “Must Buy” list, even though I own a very great many of the anthologies you show. (Our anthologies have been relegated to the shelves in the master bedroom closet because the 12 bookcases of SF/F/H in the master bedroom itself are completely jammed full. This is very happy-making.)

    I see Map of Dreams and The Girl Who Loved Animals there — I hope you have lots of the many other Golden Gryphon single author collections that have so enriched my life over the past decade or so (particularly Gregory Frost’s and the several collections of Jeffrey Ford). And John Langan’s collection, and Laird Barron’s. And Lucius Shepard’s. And Paul Park’s If Lions Could Speak, which I’m reading right now. And — well — a lot. Ever since John Kessel talked to me about short fiction at an ICFA a decade ago, I’ve been insatiable for the stuff. Our field is incredibly rich with great short stories.

  13. jeff vandermeer says:

    We have all of that stuff. But as noted what’s shown is only a small part of our relevant personal library. And, of course, further library research, online research, etc. It’s going to be difficult–a wealth of material.

  14. jeff vandermeer says:

    It’s worth noting though that it’s unlikely we’ll be choosing any Halloween stories or kids-in-graveyard stories.

  15. Seth Merlo says:

    This sounds like an exciting project! You guys are so well-read that this would have to be considered the one-stop shop and definitive introduction (and then some, at 750k words) to weird fiction.

  16. brendan connell says:

    Are you doing just stuff originally written in English, or stuff from all over the world?

  17. Jeff VanderMeer says:

    We’re looking at everything. We can’t commission translations, however. We can only look at what’s already been translated. Some iconic authors must be included, but there should be room for at least some expansion of scope beyond the norm.

  18. Chris Herrmann says:

    Now that’s a bookshelf to be jealous of! :)

  19. Bill Barnett says:

    There are enough books in the pictures that I own as well, and shelves similar enough to ones I own (Billy from IKEA), that I briefly had the creepy sensation that my shelves had been clandestinely photographed and presented here.

  20. Egg says:

    Hey, you stole some of my books.
    Seriously though, no Tanith Lee?

  21. Jeff VanderMeer says:

    Egg: To reiterate, this is only a fraction. Of course we have Tanith Lee. What do you think we are?! Barbarians?!?!??!?! LOL.

  22. Egg says:

    Never can tell these days.
    Am impressed by the Davidson and Moorcock.
    Can’t wait for the book,
    Sounds very cool.

  23. jeff vandermeer says:

    Egg: it’s just a fraction.

  24. Egg says:

    I know, I know, just a fraction.
    Can’t tell from the stacks here-
    But you folks ever hear of
    Henry “Lewis” Sands?
    Is a poet of weird. Think he goes
    by his middle name.

  25. Hellbound Heart says:

    oh man i am SOOO JEALOUS…..

    peace and love…..

  26. Michael Canfield says:

    Have you read “John Duffy’s Brother” by Flann O’Brien?

  27. Jeff VanderMeer says:

    Nope. Does it qualify as a weird tale?

  28. Michael Canfield says:

    “John Duffy’s Brother”

    @Jeff ” Does it qualify as a weird tale?”

    I’d say it does, but it has no supernatural content. I read it in an out-of-print O’Brien collection “Stories & Plays” but turns out it is also in “Black Water: The Anthology of Fantastic Literature” ed. Alberto Manguel,
    which I noticed in one of your pix above. Page 371 according to the Locus database. I read the story aloud every year or so; one of my favorites.

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