Today we digitally release a ground-breaking and definitive anthology of short stories from some of the very biggest names in science fiction and fantasy . . . Presenting:
An anthology of post-apocalyptic short fiction from genre heavyweights such as Stephen King, George R. R. Martin, Orson Scott Card, Cory Doctorow, Gene Wolfe, Jonathan Lethem, Paolo Bacigalupi, Tobias S. Buckell, Jack McDevitt, Neal Barrett Jr., Richard Kadrey and many many others….
(see a full list here)
At the same time, we’re also releasing THE LIVING DEAD – an anthology of zombie stories from even more superstars of the SFF genre . . . More on that next week, but for now it’s fair to say that if you’re into zombies and apocalypses, both these anthologies are perfect reading whilst waiting to see the WORLD WAR Z movie! They’re both edited by John Joseph Adams, the bestselling editor of many anthologies and a four-time finalist for the Hugo and World Fantasy Awards.
Today we’re focusing on WASTELANDS: STORIES OF THE APOCALYPSE. We asked the authors involved to give us a few comments about what inspired them to write the stories included . . .
Cory Doctorow on his story “When Sysadmins Ruled the Earth”from WASTELANDS
The most important thing about a system is how it fails, though mostly we pay attention to how it works. Who cares how many houses you could buy on cheap credit if they all end up as subprime roadkill when the whole crooked business unravels?
We tell ourselves that civilisation fails badly. Stories I love, from Day of the Triffids to 1984, paint a picture of a world where disaster is attended by riots, rape and cruelty. The reality – shown time and again – is that disaster is attended by kindness, care, and compassion. When the lights go out, we don’t eat each other, we help each other.
‘Elite panic’ is the sociological phenomenon that causes the masters of the universe to send guns into Haiti after the quake – ahead of the humanitarian aid. It’s why the City of London is blanketed in CCTVs. It’s why police all over the world are so pants-wettingly terrified of public protest and treat every march like a riot in potentia.
We need to tell ourselves stories about the goodness of our neighbours as remedy for the vile slander that our stories have told us about the human race. It is the only way to counter elite panic. (more…)