John Joseph Adams
March 8, 2008
About John Joseph Adams

John Joseph Adams is the assistant editor at The Magazine
of Fantasy & Science Fiction
, and is the editor of the
forthcoming reprint anthology
Wastelands: Stories of the
(Night Shade Books, January 2008).

He has written reviews for
Kirkus Reviews, Publishers
, and Orson Scott Card’s Intergalactic Medicine
and is the print news correspondent for SCI FI Wire
(the news service of the
SCI FI Channel). His non-fiction
has also appeared in:
Amazing Stories, The Internet Review
of Science Fiction
, Locus Magazine, Novel & Short Story
Writers Market
, Science Fiction Weekly, Shimmer,
Strange Horizons, Subterranean Magazine, and Writer’s

He currently lives in New Jersey. Visit his site at
Post Meeting Write-up

Our March Face the Fiction, with guest John Joseph Adams,
was quite enjoyable and was a fun night.

Todd started the ball rolling by making several
announcements and hogging the microphone - the power
goes to his head.  
Todd announced the following:

1) the June weekend at Reality's Edge for the
Bill Molendyk
Charity Gaming Event
.  Exact dates, times, details will follow
shortly in a separate special announcement.
2) beginning in April, Drawing A Crowd moves to New Moon
Comics in Little Falls.
3) beginning in April, we will have a new pre-meeting
segment, Whispers from Beyond (7p).  This wonderful
suggestion came from
Kate Landis!  Thanks to Kate.
4) locations for some upcoming Face the Fictions were
Todd reluctantly handed the microphone over to Steve S who
gave a wonderful introduction for our guest
John Joseph
and we officially began the meeting.

John Joseph Adams was an engaging, informative and very
at ease speaker.  He quickly realized this group has a lot of
fun with each other and joined in.  

Mr. Adams works for Fantasy & Science Fiction magazine,
edited the anthology
Wastelands, edited the Pirate issue of
Shimmer and also does interviews for  Busy

The meeting opened with our guest telling us about his
beginnings - majored in English in Florida, moved to New
Jersey to look for a job in publishing, and
Fantasy & SF
magazine got him.  When asked about inspirations,
admits that his path to publishing started with an
interest in video games.  It was the game
Fallout that
started his addiction for apocalypse stories, and another
game that started his fascination with pirates.  Gotta admire
a man who admits his guilty pleasures, especially to this

Many questions were asked about the
anthology.  We discovered that he did a lot of reading about
the genre before deciding what he wanted in the anthology.  
He differentiates between apocalypse/post-apocalypse and
the various ways these stories are handled.  He prefers the
"hopeful ending" apocalypse.  He discussed the concept of
people not using technology as being the ones who will be
the survivors.  He even gave a shout out to the SCA (much
to the delight of
Ana & Brian).  Can John Joseph endear
himself or what!  
Thom, yet again, had to offer his belief that
Flintstones are indeed a post-apocalyptic family.  The
order of the stories in the book gave him some difficulty.  He
wanted a nice balance.  He didn't want too many of the
darker stories together.  He went mostly by feel, and tried to
separate darker stories with "lighter" ones for balance.  The
number of stories/words was a random pick.  He felt 150,000
words would be easier for a first-time editor to pitch.  He
also admitted that
Wastelands was exceeding sales
expectations - it's selling like mad and going into a third
reprint!  Pretty cool.

John Joseph also spoke about the Pirate issue of
Shimmer.  He told us he wanted a broad interpretation of
"pirate" for the issue - some historical pirates, but also
contemporary, techno, etc. for a nice range.  He really liked
that submissions for the
Pirate issue were anonymous.  This
way, you choose the story for the story.  

We found out he is not a disciplined writer, as he put it, "the
Internet is distracting!"  He has to have a deadline.  He's a
self-professed "movie snob" and feels that no movie stands
out in the apocalyptic genre.  One of his favorite movies,
, comes the closest to using good elements of the
apocalypse genre in his humble opinion.  Someone brought
Doomsday.  Mr. Adam's response was funny, "yeah, I
thought this might be good until I saw the crazy biker punks
- not good, not good.  What is it with the biker punks in
these movies?!"  He also noted there has been a resurgence
of British apocalypse stories making the rounds.

We took a brief break, converged upon our guest pens &
books in hand, he didn't even flinch!  When
Todd corralled us
back into our seats,
John Joseph read from Wastelands for
us.  He was asked what his all time favorite book was.  With
no hesitation, he said
The Stars, My Destination by Alfred
Bester.  He described it as a revenge story, hmm.  Other
good reads he's enjoyed -
Beyond Armageddon, Long Loud
, The Last Babylon, No Earth Abides and A Canticle for

Mr. Adams ended the meeting by telling us about his
upcoming books.  Coming in August is
Seeds of Change, an
original anthology collection.  In September/October brings
us the tentatively titled
The Living Dead (he wanted to call
No Room in Hell but the powers that be didn't agree.  He
guesses they felt it didn't scream ZOMBIE enough).  Yes, this
anthology is about Zombies and we are all waiting for this

We cleaned up and headed over to Suburban Diner, with our
guest, to continue the fun.  Cool guest that
John Joseph
was, we told him he had to pay, and he still came to the
diner.  We had a great time at the diner and
Paul took
several photos.  What didn't we talk about!  You had to see
us trying to talk to each, about 20 of us ventured to the
diner.  I guess it's a good thing about that many of us went
home after the meeting - no way all of us would've fit.  Next
month brings a very special guest, international best-selling
author Lincoln Child!!  We're not sure who's more excited,
Robin, the GM at Borders or us.  Please join us next month
Lincoln Child.

The Stars, My Destination by Alfred Bester (1956; also called
Tiger! Tiger!) is a classic. It's a retelling of The Count of Monte
in an interplanetary society in which teleportation is

P.S.: The post-armageddon novels Adams mentioned are:
Alas, Babylon (1959) by Pat Frank; Earth Abides (1949) by
George R. Stewart; and
A Canticle for Leibowitz (1960) by
Walter M. Miller, Jr.