Reading: The New Weird

New Weird

I picked up a copy of The New Weird, because I recognized about 1/2 of the authors. I tried to piece together in my mind what this “New Weird” was, thinking back over what I’d read by K. J. Bishop, Clive Barker, Jay Lake, and Paul Di Filippo. I mixed in what I knew about China Miéville and Michael Moorcock, two writers I’ve been meaning to read. I read Jeff Vandermeer’s Introduction. This is what I love about a good anthology. He took me on a whirlwind tour of Weird, building up to a definition that I can actually use to tag novels and stories “new weird.”

The book is divided into 4 sections, and I’ll probably post reviews on each:

  • Stimuli – these are examples of the New Wave and New Horror stories that influenced New Weird.
  • Evidence – these are actual examples of New Weird. You can read Jay Lake’s piece from this section at Tachyon’s New Weird page
  • Symposium – these are essays about New Weird.
  • Laboratory is a round robin fictional experiment meant to showcase what New Weird means to the participating authors. A “coda” for this can be read at Tachyon’s New Weird page

I’m currently reading Ice Song, by Kirsten Imani Kasi. It’s classified as fantasy, but in almost every way that Vandermeer talked about New Weird, I think Ice Song fits. I’ll let you know how I feel about this once I’ve finished reading both Ice Song and The New Weird.

At the end of the book is Recommended Reading list, which I’ve reproduced below. I’ve only read a handful, so I’ve just added probably a year to my to-read list. That’s actually quite exciting.

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~ by mentatjack on May 31, 2009.

12 Responses to “Reading: The New Weird”

  1. And there’s also the New Weird Thread – quoted in the Vandermeers’ book – which was various luminaries discussing the New Weird on M. John Harrison’s messageboard on the (then) Third Alternative messageboards.

    It’s archived here – http://urchin.earth.li/cgi-bin/twic/wiki/view.pl?page=TheNewWeirdAnnotations – the TTA Press links don’t work any more, but the Kathryn Cramer ones go to the original discussion, and the urchin.earth page also has a summary and extensive notes.

  2. [...] A reader reacts to The New Weird [...]

  3. thank you so much for this list, great stuff

  4. [...] there are a handful of titles from the New Weird Recommeded Reading List I posted earlier this [...]

  5. It’s been pointed out that this list is incomplete. The editors of The New Weird stated as much in the introduction to this list. I’ll revisit this at some point in the future and I’d LOVE to get recommendations for what else to include.

  6. I just added a link to a free download of VanderMeer’s “The Situation.” It’s part of an interview with “GeekDad” over at Wired.

  7. [...] continued to read through The New Weird. I had to return my library copy, so I bought my [...]

  8. [...] edited by Ann and Jeff VanderMeer. I previously posted an overview of the anthology, including the recommended reading list. The stories in the Stimuli section are the New Wave and New Horror precursors to New [...]

  9. [...] searching for other examples. Most anthologies have a good recommended reading section (like the New Weird one I blogged about) but very few novels do. I falsely remembered some of my favorite books having [...]

  10. [...] add comment if you are logged out.Stefan Hayden I would start with this new weird anthology http://mentatjack.com/2009/05/31…Comment downvoted • 6:57amCannot add reply if you are logged out.6:57am  Kenneth Rona [...]

  11. [...] especially with its recommended-reading section at the end (a hyperlinked version can be found here).  New Weird is not China Mieville and a bunch of hangers-on, mainstream appearances [...]

  12. Have a one edited by them called just, The Weird, very big, over a hundred stories. They say it’s a compendium of strange and dark stories. Not sure, I really get what Weird is as a literary form, but I’m loving the book. Will definitely check out The New Weird. Thanks for the info!

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