Via io9, John Joseph Adams and Hugh Howey announced a new anthology series called The Apocalypse Triptych. The three volumes in the trilogy are titled: The End is Nigh, The End is Now and The End Has Come. As the titles of the books suggest, each volume will focus on a particular period before, during and after an apocalyptic event.
Adams, editor of Lightspeed and Nightmare, is one of the most popular (and prolific) anthologies editors working today, and Howey is one of Science Fiction’s most successful stories of self-published-author-takes-over-the-world (before selling the print rights to Simon & Schuster, he sold half-a-million copies of his novella-collection Wool). I have trouble describing the magnitude impact of these two working together without degenerating into a series of weightless superlatives. These books are gonna sell a ton. Period.
Speaking with io9, Adams described the reasoning behind publishing a unique triptych of anthologies, rather than one large anthology covering all types of apocalyptic stories. “[T]here is a distinct vibe that each of these types of stories has,” he said, referring to end-of-the-world, the-world-hand-ended, and post-apocalyptic scenarios. “[A]nd I suspect that there are lots of readers who are interested in one mode of apocalypse fiction or another; some might prefer watching everything burn, while some might be more interested in seeing what happens after everything has burned, etc., and so I think anthologies like these can be valuable for that reason.”
Howey, on the other hand, has his own take on why the progressive nature of the triptych is important. He says, “The beauty of this triptych, for me, is the chance to read short stories with sequels, short stories that take us on a journey, that tie a single world together across time and space.”
The Triptych includes many of today’s most exciting short fiction authors, including Paolo Bacigalupi, Seanan McGuire, Ben H. Winters, Elizabeth Bear, Scott Sigler, Robin Wasserman. Adams made clear, however, that not all authors will appear in every volume. Wool fans are in luck, though, as Howey is confirmed to have a Wool story in each volume. As if these books weren’t going to sell enough copies already.
More information about The Apocalypse Triptych is available through the official website. The first volume, The End is Nigh will be released in June, 2014.