My Three-Novel Deal with Farrar, Straus & Giroux

Pool and Cats 014
(From a hiking trail at St. Marks Wildlife Refuge)

As some of you may already know from facebook or Publishers Marketplace, Farrar, Straus & Giroux has acquired my Southern Reach trilogy in a rather awesome six-figure deal. The first two novels are titled Annihilation and Authority, with the third probably called Acceptance. The novels will be published starting in 2014, with not all that much space between pub dates. Huge thanks to my agent Sally Harding at the Cooke Agency.

The inspiration for Annihilation, the first novel, came from, among other things, a nightmare about a tunnel, and by the hiking trail I do out at St. Marks Wildlife Refuge here in North Florida, even if somewhat…transformed.

Here’s a little bit more on Annihilation, and the basic set-up…


For thirty years, Area X has remained mysterious, remote, and concealed by the government as an environmental disaster zone even though it is to all appearances pristine wilderness. For thirty years, too, the secret agency known as the Southern Reach has monitored Area X and sent in expeditions to try to discover the truth. Some expeditions have suffered terrible consequences. Others have reported nothing out of the ordinary. Now, as Area X seems to be changing and perhaps expanding, the next expedition will attempt to succeed where all others have failed. What is happening in Area X? What is the true nature of the invisible border that surrounds it?

Annihilation tells the story of the twelfth expedition through the narration of a nameless biologist attached to the mission. A reticent, solitary woman, the biologist brings her own personal secrets with her. She is accompanied by a psychologist, anthropologist, and surveyor, their stated mission to chart the wilderness, take samples, and expand the Southern Reach’s understanding of Area X.

But they soon find out that the information given to them about Area X is incomplete or inaccurate, and that they are being manipulated by forces both strange and all too familiar. The old abandoned lighthouse on the coast is more than it seems. A moaning in the distance at dusk appears to have no natural cause. A tunnel plunging into the ground isn’t on any map.

In Area X, they will all find out what it truly means to face the unknown. Adapt or die.


  1. IlGialloMondadori says

    Sounds like it has some shades of Roadside Picnic. Congratulations on the book deal! Eagerly awaiting the first volume.

  2. jeff vandermeer says

    Thanks, all!

    Rose–may I just say how much I loved your recent poem at Strange Horizons?