Posts tagged ‘Apocalypse Now: Poems and Prose from the End of Days’

Alexander Lumans

Alexander Lumans graduated from the MFA Fiction Program at Southern Illinois University Carbondale. His fiction has been published in or is forthcoming from Story Quarterly, Black Warrior Review, Cincinnati Review, Blackbird, Surreal South 2011, and The Book of Villains. He was a Tennessee Williams Scholar at the 2010 Sewanee Writers’ Conference and he won the 2011 Barry Hannah Fiction Prize from the Yalobusha Review. Recently, he was awarded a MacDowell Colony Fellowship for Fall 2011.


Books for Upper Rubber Boot:

Lumans is Fiction Editor of Apocalypse Now: Poems and Prose from the End of Days.

21 December 2012

Andrew McFadyen-Ketchum

Andrew McFadyen-Ketchum is the author of Ghost Gear (University of Arkansas Press, 2014, Finalist for 2014 Foreword ReviewsINDIEFAB Book of the Year Award, Finalist for the Colorado Book Award), series editor of the Floodgate Poetry Series: Three Chapbooks by Three Poets in a Single Volume (Upper Rubber Boot Books, annually starting in 2014), founder and Editor-in-Chief of, and editor of Warning! Poems May Be Longer Than They Appear: An Anthology of LongISH Poems (forthcoming) and Apocalypse Now: Poems and Prose from the End of Days (Upper Rubber Boot Books, 2012).

His poems, reviews, interviews, and podcasts have appeared in journals such as The Writer’s Chronicle, The Southern Poetry Anthology, Glimmer Train, American Literary Review, The Spoon River Poetry Review, The Missouri Review, storySouth, Blackbird,, and Hayden’s Ferry Review, among others.

Andrew holds a Masters of Fine Arts Degree from Southern Illinois University – Carbondale, is Acquisitions Editor for Upper Rubber Boot Books, and is a contributing-editor for The Southern Indiana Review.

He is also an award-winning freelance editor, writing coach, and instructor of Creative Writing and English at the University of Colorado Boulder.


Books for Upper Rubber Boot:

McFadyen-Ketchum is Series Editor for the Floodgate Poetry Series.

Floodgate Poetry Series Vol. 3, containing a poetry chapbook by Enid Shomer, another chapbook co-written by Cave Canem fellows F. Douglas Brown and Geffrey Davis, and a third chapbook co-written by brothers Anders and Kai Carlson-Wi, will be released in November 2016.

Floodgate Poetry Series Vol. 2, containing poetry by Kallie Falandays, Aaron Jorgensen-Briggs, and Judy Jordan, was released on 17 November 2015. floodgate_coverart_no2_2015_6x9_front
Floodgate Poetry Series Vol. 1, containing poetry by Jenna Bazzell, Martin Anthony Call and Campbell McGrath, was released on 17 November 2014. floodgate_coverart_no1_2014_6x9_2592x3888
McFadyen-Ketchum was Editor and Poetry Editor of Apocalypse Now: Poems and Prose from the End of Days, which was released 21 December 2012.

21 December 2012

Apocalypse Now

How will the end come? What will we do when all the lights go out?

Winner of the Nashville Scene‘s Best Literary Anthology 2013.

Every society and every generation has its version of the apocalypse: swine flu, genetic mutation, global warming, nuclear fallout, the second coming, peak oil, mass extinction, giant irradiated ants, zombies… Apocalypse Now: Poems and Prose from the End of Days is the first anthology of its kind to bring together the poetry and prose of some of America’s finest (though not always most well-known) literary voices with an eye for the literary and the popular, for story and lyric, for the past and the future, for the psychological and the physical, for the real and the fantastic.

Missy, the single mother of Margaret Atwood‘s “The Silver Astroturfer,” spends her days in her basement of computers churning out copy under various aliases (“ExCodFisherman” or “LeglessVeteran” or “LadyDuckHunter”) in order to manipulate the daily news. Davis McCombs poems tell the story of a dying tobacco industry in the South and of the killing of the last gray wolf in Edmonson County, Kentucky.

Rodney Jones‘s “Apocalyptic Narrative” opens in a post-apocalyptic United States in which our hero survives via c-rations and government cheese in an abandoned cave. Joyce Carol Oates‘s “Thanksgiving” depicts a father and daughter who venture out to buy food for their Thanksgiving dinner because the mother is ill. This seemingly ordinary trip, however, becomes decidedly unordinary when our assumptions about their world quickly crumble.

Judy Jordan‘s poems examine humankind’s slow destruction of the earth while Paolo Bacigalupi‘s story, “The People of Sand and Slag,” looks at how we would live post-global warming via three explorers who utilize the environment itself to remake their decaying bodies.

Chet Weise‘s poems tell of the sorely under-reported floods that overwhelmed Nashville, Tennessee in May 2010 in which the Cumberland River rose twelve feet above flood stage and twenty-one people were killed. Pinckney Benedict‘s “The Beginnings of Sorrow” is a deeply disturbing take on metamorphoses as well as apocalypses both large and small, centering on a rural couple with a dog possessed by his master’s deceased and lust-sick father.

Authors include Margaret Atwood, Paolo Bacigalupi, Brian Barker, Jenna Bazzell, Nicky Beer, Pinckney Benedict, Kristin Bock, Tina Connolly, David J. Daniels, Darcie Dennigan, Brian Evenson, Seth Fried, TR Hummer, Rodney Jones, Judy Jordan, Kelly Link, Alexander Lumans, Charles Martin, Davis McCombs, Andrew McFadyen-Ketchum, Marc McKee, Tessa Mellas, Wayne Miller, Simone Muench, Keith Montesano, Joyce Carol Oates, Ed Pavlić, Catherine Pierce, Kevin Prufer, Joshua Robbins, David Roderick, Jeffrey Schultz, Maggie Smith, Chet Weise, Josh Woods, and E. Lily Yu. Cover art by Jason Clark.


Apocalypse Now: Poems and Prose from the End of Days is edited by Andrew McFadyen-Ketchum, and fiction was selected by Alexander Lumans.

Alexander Lumans graduated from the MFA Fiction Program at Southern Illinois University Carbondale. His fiction has been published in or is forthcoming from Story Quarterly, Black Warrior Review, Cincinnati Review, Blackbird, Surreal South 2011, and The Book of Villains. He was a Tennessee Williams Scholar at the 2010 Sewanee Writers’ Conference and he won the 2011 Barry Hannah Fiction Prize from the Yalobusha Review. Recently, he was awarded a MacDowell Colony Fellowship for Fall 2011.

Andrew McFadyen-Ketchum‘s poems, essays, reviews, podcasts, and interviews recently appear or are forthcoming in The Writers Chronicle, The Southern Poetry Anthology, Volume VI: Tennessee, The Spoon River Poetry Review, Poet Lore, The Missouri Review, storySouth,, Eclipse, Copper Nickel, New Letters, Glimmer Train, Hayden’s Ferry Review, Potomac Review, and The Southern Indiana Review, among others. He writes a web-column, poetry=am^k, as a Contributing Editor for The Southern Indiana Review, and he is Founder and Editor of, Managing Editor of and Acquisitions Editor of Upper Rubber Boot Books. Andrew holds a Masters of Fine Arts Degree from Southern Illinois University – Carbondale and is an Adjunct Professor of Creative Writing and English at the University of Colorado – Denver, Metro State College of Denver, Community College of Denver, and CCCOnline. He currently lives in Denver, Colorado.


What people are saying about Apocalypse Now:

The first short story The Adjudicator, by Brian Evenson is stark and bleak in a post-apocalyptic, terrifyingly realistic world with just enough strangeness to keep you wondering. I can’t wait to read more of this book.

—Diane Severson, “Various and Sundry Science Fiction Poetry,” Amazing Stories, 22 February 2013.

In the midst of this hyperbolic fun, Apocalypse Now is a startlingly serious contribution. Six sections encompass 98 stories and poems, which are fairly evenly across the breadth of the book in tone and topic.
Lured in by the promise of big names like Joyce Carol Oates, Margaret Atwood and Paolo Bacigalupi, I fell in love with the sheer variety in this book. Covering more than traditional apocalypse scenarios, it’s a collection of absolute endings.

A story about anarchistic bees sits alongside a poem which describes a woman committing quiet suicide. David J. Daniels nervously relates the ripple-effect of his own mugging in This is the Pink before his spotlight is stolen by a group of cheese miners who are stranded on the moon.

Kelly Link’s surreal, neo-traditional folktale about feuding witches follows a description of God as a lion on the hunt.

I wasn’t sure what to expect of the poetry, but the standard was generally high. Different writers aimed for different things – it was surprising how many plumbed for humour, in the face of all that could be.

—Sarah Dunn, “Apocalypse Now: Revisiting the Daydream,” Nelson Mail, 8 February 2013.

Apocalypse Now: Poems and Prose from the End of Days is a treasure-chest of cataclysms. Lumans and McFadyen-Ketchum have ranged far across the landscape of contemporary English-language literature searching for glimpses of upheaval and ruin, and in doing so they have produced something unique: a survey of the present-day apocalyptic imagination in both poetry and fiction. If, like me, you’ve read much of the one and little of the other, you’re bound to make some compelling new discoveries here, and if you’ve read little of either, you’re in for one beautiful harrowing surprise after another.

— Kevin Brockmeier, author of The Illumination, The Brief History of the Dead and The View from the Seventh Layer

Warning: reading Apocalypse Now may result in side effects like chewed fingernails, heart palpitations, and paranoia so severe that you stockpile dried goods, fill the bathtub with water, hammer plywood over the windows, and oil your rifle.

— Benjamin Percy, author of Red Moon, The Wilding, Refresh, Refresh and The Language of Elk

Never before has humanity’s twilight shined so brightly. The poems and stories within Apocalypse Now glitter with a clarity and luster typically reserved for only the purest of gems or the most cutting of insights. The voices here have each taken their own, singular approach to a theme that is as ancient as humanity itself and, in doing so, created a unified theory of the apocalypse: a coming together of our fears, our hopes, our willingness to discover ourselves at the moment we have lost it all, the moment when we stand on the cusp of annihilation and, somehow, cannot look away… but can only sing. And this collection sings like no other.

— Jason Mott, author of The Returned


Table of Contents

(with links to works from the book available online)

Brian Evenson
     The Adjudicator
Rodney Jones
     Apocalyptic Narrative
Chet Weise
     An American Prayer for the Second Coming
     Jericho Trumpets
Joyce Carol Oates
Judy Jordan
     At Winter’s Edge
     Moon of Hunger, Moon of Coyote Howl
     A Short Drop to Nothing
Ed Pavlic
     From: Arachnida Speak
Margaret Atwood
     The Silver Astroturfer
Andrew McFadyen-Ketchum
     when the dark heads of sleep
David Roderick
Kelly Link
Marc McKee
     & I Don’t Sleep, I Don’t Sleep, I Don’t Sleep Till It’s Light
     We Are All Going to Die, and I Love You
     I Love You and We Are All Going to Die
     Electric Company
Darcie Dennigan
     Corinna A-Maying the Apocalypse
David J. Daniels
     This Is the Pink
Alexander Lumans
     All the Things the Moon is Not
Brian Barker
     Visions for the Last Night on Earth
     Gorbachev’s Ubi Sunt from the Future that Soon Will Pass
     The Last Songbird
     Lullaby for the Last Night on Earth
Maggie Smith
     Night of the Comet (1984)
     On the Beach (1959)
     The Quiet Earth (1985)
     When Worlds Collide (1951)
Paolo Bacigalupi
     The People of Sand and Slag
Simone Muench
     Wolf Centos
          Who will take the madness from the trees?
          I watch my life running away
          I have lost my being in so many beings:
          The wolf licks her cheeks with
          First frost blackens with a cloven hoof;
          How long have I left you?—played the wolf
Joshua Robbins
     Field Guide to the Second Coming
Tessa Mellas
     Blue Sky White
Jenna Bazzell
     Into the Damp Woods
     Wet Field
Charles Martin
     Taken Up
Kristin Bock
     Dear Life Form
     Early Gospel
Seth Fried
     The Siege
Keith Montesano
     Love Song for the End of the World
     Duet Near the End
     Journey’s “Don’t Stop Believin'” Finally Collapses the Radio Waves
Wayne Miller
     The Feast
     A History of Art
     A History of War
     The Dead Moor Speaks
Josh Woods
     The Lawgiver
Nicky Beer
     Rimbaud’s Kraken
TR Hummer
     Ooo Baby Baby
     The Death of Neruda
     Corrosive Lyric
     Westbound: Little Cat Feet
     Eastbound: The Book of Enoch
     Adornment on an Ancient Tomb in Tibet
     Fragment of a Perpetually Unfinished Field Guide
E. Lily Yu
     The Cartographer Wasps and the Anarchist Bees
Jeffrey Schultz
     Weekday Apocalyptic
     J. Finds in His Pocket Neither Change nor Small Bills
Tina Connolly
Kevin Prufer
     The Enormous Parachute
     Army Tales
     Who are our Barbarians?
          a poem of the museum
     What We Did With the Empire
Catherine Pierce
     Dear Atom Bomb,
     How it Ends: Three Cities
     Fire Blight
     Several Days Before the End of the World
Pinckney Benedict
     The Beginnings Of Sorrow
Davis McCombs
     The Sharecroppers Nightshade
     First Hard Freeze Wraith
     biomass: a genealogy lone
     wet [weather] spring[s]

2 comments 21 December 2012


urb 017
Apocalypse Now:Poems and Prose from the End of Days
in the bindery department at The Sheridan Press

19 December 2012

the end is nigh

Apocalypse Now will be released in ebook form online this Friday! Are you excited? We sure as heckfire are. I’ve been talking with the printer (the urbane Sheridan Press) and the limited edition print copies should be ready to ship any moment now, too.

(I watched Groundhog Day last night, and have been saying “sure as heckfire” all day.)

Contributor Maggie Smith was featured last Friday in Technique Talk at Columbus Alive.

Simone Muench received an NEA award for her poetic work Wolf Centos, some of which appears in the anthology.

TR Hummer‘s Available Surfaces: Essays on Poesis is reviewed in Inside Higher Ed.

Kelly Link‘s “Catskin” (also her story in Apocalypse Now) appeared in the December 2012 Lightspeed Magazine, alongside an author spotlight of Brian Evenson and “The Perfect Match” by 140 And Counting contributor Ken Liu… who also has two stories (“The Postman” and “Always Here“) in the November 2012 Intergalactic Medicine Show.

Finally, 140 And Counting contributor Stella Pierides self-published her poetry book In the Garden of Absence, and her “roaring traffic,” “whistling through” and “a thousand times” appeared in With Cherries on Top.

18 December 2012

hundreds of gourds

Wild celebration and exhaustion at Casa URB this week, because our Kickstarter campaign for Apocalypse Now has reached its goal! It’s still active until noon Central on Monday, and we’re hoping to make enough extra to print 250 extra books, to be able to sell them at some readings we have tentatively planned for Denver and Nashville and maybe some other places, and at the party we’ll be throwing at the AWP conference in March.

If you’re only interested in an ebook copy, this is still a good time to get it, because it’ll cost you $2 less than if you wait until it’s out on Amazon, B&N, the iStore, etc. (Our authors still get their regular royalties despite the discount, so no worries about exploitation. The only entities missing out are the corporations that run the online bookstores, which normally take 30 to 35% of the cover price.)


Apocalypse Now contributor Margaret Atwood was awarded the title of Companion of Literature, the highest honour in the Royal Society of Literature, on November 28th. A recording of her remarks will be available sometime in December in the RSL Library.

Vineland, New Jersey’s Cumberland County College is hosting Joyce Carol Oates as part of their One Book-One College reading campaign, on Tuesday, Dec. 4, at 7 p.m. It’s free and open to the public.


A Hundred Gourds has posted their December issue, with lots of 140 And Counting contributors in it: Jim Kacian is pictured at the 2012 Haiku Festival Aotearoa in Tauranga, New Zealand with one of his poems on the Haiku Pathway and in a Katikati pub; the issue contains haiku and tanka by Helen Buckingham (1, 2, 3), Chen-ou Liu (1, 2, 3, 4), Peter Newton (1, 2, 3, 4), and Christina Nguyen (1, 2); and, finally, John McManus has written a review of T.D Ingram‘s haiku ebook Hiss of Leaves.

Other news for 140 And Counting contributors: Miriam Sagan‘s short story “M.I.A.” appeared in issue 4 of Literary Orphans; Darusha Wehm‘s story “The Care and Feeding of Mammalian Bipeds, v. 2.1” was in Escape Pod on November 15th; and The Haiku Foundation has posted their Video Haiga #7: radium by Jim Kacian:

1 December 2012

kickstarting the apocalypse

It’s been longer than usual since our last update (so look at all the links to read below! ALL THE READING!), because we’ve been completely absorbed with our Kickstarter campaign for Apocalypse Now: Poems and Prose from the End of Days!

The aim of this campaign is to release limited edition collectible paperbacks for you bibliophiles, your family, and your friends just in time for the holidays. Your orders will aid in the creation of a real, physical, bona fide, corporeal thing you can hold and flip through and show off to friends and read intently and bludgeon zombies with when the bullets run out. You can get ebooks for $2 less than they’ll retail, or the print edition (or both!) here.


News for Apocalypse Now contributors: the most recent issue of Abyss & Apex has a poem by Tina Connolly; The Brown Daily Herald published a Faculty profile: Q&A with Brian Evenson; T.R. Hummer has seven poems in Blackbird‘s Fall 2012 issue, and Nicky Beer has in the same issue an essay on poets in fiction; Hummer is also featured in Prairie Schooner; and, Chet Weise was featured in Coldfront.

News for 140 And Counting contributors: Ken Liu just won the Hugo, the Nebula and the World Fantasy Award for his touching short story “Paper Menagerie“! You can read it here. Liu is also translating Volume One of the Three-Body Trilogy (《三体》) by Liu Cixin (刘慈欣), and live-tweeting about it with the #threebody hashtag. Also, another 140 contributor, David M. Harris‘s poem “Bed, 3 A.M.” appeared in Your Daily Poem last week; and, Marge Simon has a poem in Abyss & Apex.

Finally, URB editor Joanne Merriam had a short story (“The Candy Aisle“) in the latest issue of The Journal of Unlikely Entomology.

14 November 2012

copper nickel and more

News for Apocalypse Now: Poems and Prose from the End of Days contributors: the new issue of Copper Nickel contains work by David J. Daniels, David Roderick and Andrew McFadyen-Ketchum; David J. Daniels also has three poems in thrush; Simone Muench will be reading in St. Louis, MO on Friday Nov 9th; and, Catherine Pierce has been interviewed by Prairie Schooner.

Andrew McFadyen-Ketchum will be reading some Apocalyptic poems at the Gypsy House Reading Series tomorrow (Thursday Nov 1st) at 7 pm at the Gypsy House Coffeeshop in Denver, CO with Aby Kaupang and Stant Litore.

Finally, URB editor Joanne Merriam has a guest blog at Novel Conceptions on confusing fiction with autobiography.

31 October 2012

50 cent party

News for 140 And Counting contributors: Miriam Sagan is doing a reading for her new book Seven Places in America: A Poetic Sojourn on October 30th at Collected Works Bookstore in Santa Fe; and, China Daily features Ken Liu (autoplays music).

Strange Horizons (whose funding drive is still going strong) has posted their monthly round-up of their contributors’ news, and they include some URB alums: Elizabeth Barrette has been talking about serial poetry at the Poetree Dreamwidth community, and Peg Duthie (who in addition to being in 140 And Counting, also published her collection Measured Extravagance with URB) has a poem + photograph combo (“Hide“) published by unFold.

News for Apocalypse Now: Poems and Prose from the End of Days contributors: Joyce Carol Oates is reading at New Jersey’s Ramapo Visiting Writers Series on November 12th; the UCD Advocate features Nicky Beer; and, Margaret Atwood is pairing with Naomi Alderman to write the young adult serial The Happy Zombie Sunrise Home. Incidentally, I had a chance to speak briefly with Atwood at the Nashville Public Library yesterday (where she was giving a public lecture about The Handmaid’s Tale and related topics) and she told me that her story in Apocalypse Now, “The Silver Astroturfer,” was written to be speculative, but that she’s since found out that it’s actually happening in China (she told me to google “the 50 cent kids“). Subscribers to the Sunday Times, by the way, can read it here (and the rest of you can read it when the book comes out).

28 October 2012

“Nothing. I just punch you in the head as hard as I possibly can.”

The 2012 Strange Horizons Fund Drive is on! Lots of URB anthology contributors have been published by SH over the years, as well as URB’s editor. Authors may be interested to see that a $100 donation can get your book reviewed (though you might not like what they have to say). They have lots of other prizes as well, including a few anthologies from yours truly.

Speaking of URB anthology contributors…

News for 140 And Counting contributors: Chen-ou Liu‘s haiku is up at Issa’s Untidy Hut; and, finalists for the 2012 SFPA Dwarf Stars Award (for the best short-short speculative poem published in the last year) included a ton of my people: Elizabeth Barrette, Robert Borski, Jim Kacian, Julie Bloss Kelsey, David Kopaska-Merkel, Aurelio Rico Lopez III and Marge Simon.

News for Apocalypse Now: Poems and Prose from the End of Days contributors: Pinckney Benedict was interviewed recently for both Red Room and Pif, and Kristin Bock‘s OMG-why-didn’t-I-think-of-that-title poem, “I WISH I COULD WRITE A POEM ABOUT POLE-VAULTING ROBOTS” was published October 1st at Verse.

Finally, URB editor Joanne Merriam has a guest blog at Novel Conceptions on beginning a novel.

7 October 2012

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