Horror & Dark Fantasy

Best American Science Fiction and Fantasy 2017

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Nonfiction

Editorial, January 2016

Welcome to issue forty of Nightmare!

In case you missed my big news last month: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, publishers of my Best American Science Fiction and Fantasy (and the rest of the Best American series), have offered me the opportunity to edit a science fiction/fantasy (and horror) novel line for them—and naturally I agreed!

The line will be called John Joseph Adams Books (their idea, not mine!), and will be a tightly-curated list of 7-10 titles per year. We’ll be pre-launching the line in early 2016 with new editions of three Hugh Howey novels: Beacon 23, Shift, and Dust—making them available via traditional publishing for the first time, and then the line will kick things off in earnest in early 2017 with our first batch of never-before-published works.

If you’re a regular reader of my magazines and/or anthologies, then you should already have a good idea of what to expect—and if you like my work as a short fiction editor, then I suspect you’ll like the novels I publish as well. The John Joseph Adams Books website is still under development, but if you bookmark johnjosephadamsbooks.com, that’ll take you to it when it’s ready.

And never fear, dear readers—I’ll still be here, working to bring you your monthly dose of Nightmare(s), and I’ll also still be editing Lightspeed and anthologies as well. How (?!), you may ask. Good question—I’m not entirely sure! I will probably have to get much better at delegating! But the good news is, I got lots of practice this year serving as a judge for the National Book Award (Young People’s Literature category), where I had to consider about 300 novels while keeping up with my short fiction duties. So I think I’ll be able to fit everything into my schedule. If not, I’ll just give up some optional extracurricular activities, like sleep.

Also, speaking of HMH and Best American Science Fiction and Fantasy—ICYMI, it’s now available. In it, guest editor Joe Hill and I present the top twenty stories of 2014 (ten science fiction, ten fantasy), by the following: Nathan Ballingrud, T.C. Boyle, Adam-Troy Castro, Neil Gaiman, Theodora Goss, Alaya Dawn Johnson, Kelly Link, Carmen Maria Machado, Seanan McGuire, Sam J. Miller, Susan Palwick, Cat Rambo, Jess Row, Karen Russell, A. Merc Rustad, Sofia Samatar (two stories!), Kelly Sandoval, Jo Walton, and Daniel H. Wilson. Learn more at johnjosephadams.com/best-american.

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With the announcements out of the way, here’s what we have on tap this month:

We have original fiction from Sam J. Miller (“Angel, Monster, Man”) and Nisi Shawl (“Vulcanization”), along with reprints by Richard Bowes (“There’s a Hole in the City”) and Tia V. Travis (“Down Here in the Garden”).

We also have the latest installment of our column on horror, “The H Word,” plus author spotlights with our authors, a showcase on our cover artist, and a feature interview with Gary Whitta.

It’s another great month for nightmares, so thanks for reading!

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John Joseph Adams

John Joseph Adams (Photo courtesy of University of Central Florida/Jeffrey San Juan)

John Joseph Adams, in addition to serving as publisher and editor-in-chief of Nightmare, is the editor of John Joseph Adams Books, a new SF/Fantasy imprint from Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. He is also the series editor of Best American Science Fiction & Fantasy, as well as the bestselling editor of many other anthologies, including The Mad Scientist’s Guide to World DominationRobot Uprisings, Dead Man’s Hand, Armored, Brave New Worlds, Wastelands, and The Living Dead. Recent and forthcoming projects include: Cosmic Powers, What the #@&% Is That?, Operation Arcana, Loosed Upon the World, Wastelands 2, Press Start to Play, and The Apocalypse Triptych: The End is Nigh, The End is Now, and The End Has Come. Called “the reigning king of the anthology world” by Barnes & Noble, John is a two-time winner of the Hugo Award (for which he has been a finalist ten times) and is a seven-time World Fantasy Award finalist. John is also the editor and publisher of Lightspeed Magazine and is a producer for Wired.com’s The Geek’s Guide to the Galaxy podcast. Find him on Twitter @johnjosephadams.