Tonight at 7 PM I’ll be onstage at Elliott Bay Book Company, talking to German author Jo Lendle about his novel All the Land, which has just been translated into English. The book is a fictionalized account of the life of polar researcher Alfred Wegener (1880-1930), who originated the modern theory of continental drift. If you’re in the Seattle area you should definitely come by and see us, but even if you’re not, you should pick up a copy of the book, which is great:

He looked through the sheets one by one, then crumpled each piece and tossed them over to the cold fireplace. He missed it every single time. The white paper balls bounced off the surrounds and rolled briefly across the kitchen floor before coming to rest. He kept the four best drafts. The tool chest contained a few nails and a hammer, and Wegener used them to affix the pictures to the wall above the fireplace, next to the cast iron pokers.

They showed the prehistoric face of the Earth. Wegener had spent the day cutting continents out of stiff card and transferring the most important characteristics to them: directions of the glaciers’ motions, occurrence of rare species of flora and fauna. Then he had pushed the pieces to and fro on the tabletop like glasses at one of the seances all the world was talking about. What ghosts was he trying to summon? When the pieces refused to fit he had cut, torn and folded them until everything finally tessellated: abrasions, habitats, coasts. Then he had constantly retraced the continents’ paths, how they split, divided, separated off and drifted into their present positions. He had repeated the movement until his hands knew them by rote, forwards and backwards, in a single moment overcoming distances for which the continents had taken millennia.

Then he had traced the various phases onto new sheets and finally coloured the surfaces of the continents as far as the pencil stumps had allowed. He had chosen a pink pencil for the ur-continent, because it was closest at hand. While the ur-continent was a single mass in the first picture, in the consecutive sketches it separated ever further, each surface drifting gradually away towards its present position.

Only now that the series of pictures was on the wall did it occur to him that their course looked like a flower slowly opening its pink blossom. Or a plate breaking very gradually. No, thinking about it, it was an embryo, lying curled in the first picture and then growing continually, the little head rising, the foetus stretching out arms and legs and taking ever greater shape. As long as one did not get confused by the head and limbs gradually separating off from the rump. Wegener picked up the last piece of pink and wrote beneath the first picture: All the Land.


I’m coming to Brooklyn on April 16

by Matt Ruff on April 2, 2019

On Tuesday, April 16, I will be appearing on stage with Victor LaValle (author of The Ballad of Black Tom) and Ruthanna Emrys (Winter Tide) at the Film Noir Cinema in Brooklyn, NY. We’ll be doing a town hall-style discussion hosted by the Miskatonic Institute of Horror Studies entitled “The Shadow Over Lovecraft: Interrogating H.P. Lovecraft’s Racism.” The event starts at 7 PM; author Rodney Perkins (Cosmic Suicide) will moderate.

Admission is $15 in advance and $17 at the door. Hope to see you there!

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Now en français

by Matt Ruff on March 28, 2019

Presses de la Cité’s edition of Lovecraft Country is out today. French language translation by Laurent Philibert-Caillat:

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by Matt Ruff on March 12, 2019

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Proof-of-life news post

by Matt Ruff on March 7, 2019

Sorry things have been so quiet on the blog lately. I’m not dead, just finishing up a new novel. More details on that soon. In the meantime:

* The Taiwanese edition of Lovecraft Country was published in January by Cité Publishing Group.

* Ediciones Destino is publishing their Spanish edition of Lovecraft Country on March 12.

* The French edition of Lovecraft Country drops March 28 from Presses de la Cité.

* The UK paperback edition of Lovecraft Country will be out May 30 from Picador.

* Next month, I will be coming to New York City for a special event hosted by the Miskatonic Institute of Horror Studies. I’ll be appearing on stage with Victor LaValle at the Film Noir Cinema (122 Meserole Ave., Brooklyn) for a town hall-style discussion entitled “The Shadow Over Lovecraft: Interrogating H.P. Lovecraft’s Racism.” The event is on Tuesday, April 16, from 7:00 to 9:30 PM. Tickets are $15 in advance and $17 at the door.

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Deadline Hollywood reports that Michael Kenneth Williams has been cast as Montrose in the upcoming HBO adaptation of Lovecraft Country.

This is amazing news, and also very surreal for me: Back before the book was even optioned, when I would play the “Who would you cast as X?” game, Williams as Montrose was always one of my first picks, though I never in a million years believed it might actually happen. In short, Wow!

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I’m 53 today

by Matt Ruff on September 8, 2018

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Three new Lovecraft Country cast announcements

by Matt Ruff on June 20, 2018

Yesterday HBO revealed three more casting choices for the Lovecraft Country series:

Courtney B. Vance, who I first saw in The Hunt for Red October half a lifetime ago, will play Atticus’s uncle George.

Aunjanue Ellis (Of Mind and Music) will play Hippolyta.

Elizabeth Debicki (The Night Manager, Widows) will play Christina Braithwhite, “the only daughter of Samuel Braithwhite.”

They join Jonathan Majors (Atticus), Jurnee Smollett-Bell (Letitia), and Wunmi Mosaku (Ruby).

Meanwhile, series showrunner Misha Green tweets that she and director Yann Demange are location scouting in Chicago. So this is really happening. I still can’t quite believe it.

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Lovecraft Country now available in Russian

by Matt Ruff on June 1, 2018

The publisher is Eksmo, who also did the Russian translation of Sewer, Gas & Electric.

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Lovecraft Country out today in Germany

by Matt Ruff on May 14, 2018

The German edition of Lovecraft Country should (finally!) be in bookstores today.

The translation is by my old friend Anna Leube, the editor responsible for bringing Fool on the Hill (and me) to Germany many years ago, and Wolf Heinrich Leube. The cover is by Peter-Andreas Hassiepen.

Currently there are no plans for me to come to Germany on book tour. If this changes, I will post about it here and on my appearances page. (You can read about my last visit to Germany here.)

The UK and Czech editions of Lovecraft Country are also available now, and Brazilian, French, Hungarian, Italian, Polish, Russian, Spanish, and Taiwanese editions are forthcoming.


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