The Thackery T. Lambshead Cabinet of Curiosities Completed

Jeff VanderMeer • November 17th, 2010 @ 5:26 pm • News

6-Visits & Departures
(One of John Coulthart‘s remarkable section title pages for the anthology.)

Ann and I turned in the final manuscript for The Thackery T. Lambshead Cabinet of Curiosities (June 2011) today, in the midst of some plumbing catastrophies at the house and a lovely encounter with a couple of roving pit bulls. In addition to finalizing the introduction, creator bios, and standardizing some references, we added in Charles Yu’s awesome contribution, “The Book of Categories” and received China Mieville’s equally awesome “The Dust’s Warning: Pulvadmonitor”.

As we had hoped, the expanded context and flexibility of moving from the fake diseases of the first volume to the artifact-based stories of this second volume has resulted in a corresponding widening and deepening of emotion and experience in the fiction. Certainly, this book will be fun and entertaining, but Ann and I also think it’s provided a showcase for some stunning creators to show the full gamut of what’s possible in fantasy fiction. There’s everything from the traditional to the avant garde, bound together by the conceit and the presence of Lambshead. We think this might be the best anthology we’ve ever done.

Haven’t even mentioned the art, have we? Originals from Mike Mignola, Jan Svankmajer, Greg Broadmore, Yishan Li, Myrtle Von Damitz III, Jake von Slatt, J.K. Potter, Rikki Ducornet, James A. Owen, Ivica Stevanovic, John Coulthart, and tons more. In all, 25 artists are included, with over 65 pieces of art, and 30 writers, with another 34 contributing mini-entries in the Catalog section. So, basically, about 90 contributors (!!). The entire table of contents will be revealed on a prominent pop culture site in a week or two. (Did I mention Mike Moorcock’s hilarious story? Or Naomi Novik’s take on Lord Dunsany? Or Minister Faust’s Tesla invention? Or Ted Chiang’s mechanical nanny? The mind boggles.)

This concludes the book-delivery part of our schedule for 2010. It’s been a somewhat ridiculously productive year. Between January and November, we delivered Steampunk Reloaded (Tachyon), The Weird: A Compendium of Strange & Dark Fictions (Atlantic–750,000 words!), and now the Cabinet for HarperCollins. Not to mention my fiction collection The Third Bear, a nonfiction collection titled Monstrous Creatures, and the coffee table book The Steampunk Bible (with S.J. Chambers). Ann helped out a lot with all three of those, in addition to turning in three issues of Weird Tales and all kinds of other stuff. I also completed 40,000 words of my novel Borne, and Ann started work on an as-yet-untitled bestiary anthology. In addition to teaching at and prepping for Clarion and Shared Worlds. Oy.

So, yeah, a busy year—possibly one of the busiest yet. Maybe it’s time to take a short break. *Keels over.* X_x.

15 Responses to “The Thackery T. Lambshead Cabinet of Curiosities Completed”

  1. Kelly Barnhill says:

    Holy crap that is so beautiful. Kudos to both of you! *raises glass* Cheers!

  2. Jeff VanderMeer says:

    Thanks, Kelly–and thanks for your great contribution.

    Oh, yeah, including the title pages, more like 70 illos in the book. It’s kind of crazy. And stunning.

  3. Jess Gulbranson says:

    This is very exciting.

  4. Grant Stone says:

    Congratulations! Will now go and update my dictionary. I think the definition of ‘busy’ needs to include a picture of you two.

  5. Dominik says:

    Congratulations! Will you actually be able to relax, or are there more projects still in the wings?

  6. Ennis Drake says:

    Gorgeous. Wish I could have been a part of this one. But, as a consolation, maybe you, Ann and I can get together for an in-State Indie show. Drinks on me. ; )

  7. Jeff VanderMeer says:

    hey, sure!

  8. Juha T says:

    This is looking to be amazing. I can’t wait! My pre-order is in.

  9. ignacio sanz says:

    Amazing! I can’t wait to see the rest of the book!

  10. Tracie Welser says:

    Fabulous! I’m excited to be part of what’s shaped up to be a stunning project.

    Kudos for all your hard work (and Ann, too).

  11. Sam M-B says:

    The best anthology you’ve ever done? Wow. That’s … eye-opening.

  12. A Cabinet of Curiosities update | This is Not an Owl says:

    [...] to the latest news at editor Jeff VanderMeer’s blog, Ecstatic Days, the final manuscript has been turned in to [...]

  13. Sam M-B says:

    Hm. Went and checked, and unfortunately my local IndieBound stores don’t seem to be open for pre-orders (though the books listed at least). But it’s not one I plan to miss, and since I buy fewer actual books these days, I do it in a local store when at all possible. (Or directly from the author or at a convention, etc.) Luckily I can trust that I’ll hear about this again in the handful of months from now when the book is out.

  14. turk189 says:

    Wow! This is a stunning achievement! Kudos to A & J! It would be great to see more Lambshead anthologies in the future. Something like ‘The Thackeray T. Lambshead Atlas of Imaginary Countries’, with tons of maps, genealogies and other data, or ‘Lambshead’s Miscellanea’, with Lambshead in his full weirdness… The character and the conceit are so rich, so exciting, I like to see more of this world!

  15. RojAvon says:

    I was wondering if there will be a signed edition similar to the first volume?

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