Explaining Cthulhu to Grandma and Other Stories

I’m very excited to announce my upcoming short story collection, “Explaining Cthulhu to Grandma and Other Stories,” forthcoming in February 2015 in trade paperback and e-book formats. Here’s your first look at the cover, with art by Dixon Leavitt and graphic design by Emerson Matsuuchi. We may still tinker with some of the typesetting, but it’s very near-final.

Explaining Cthulhu to Grandma and Other Stories by Alex Shvartsman

Ken Liu has graciously agreed to write the introduction to this book, and some other great people are on board to help out (but I don’t want to spoil all the cool stuff at once!)

The physical book will contain approximately 40 short stories (including at least one previously unpublished story unique to this collection). The e-book, in addition to these stories, will include nearly 20 more, offering my complete body of published work from when I began writing fiction in 2010 and until recently (part of the reason for the February release date is to wait for the exclusive rights to expire on as many stories as possible, so they can be included). Each story is going to include author notes — commentary tidbits and (hopefully) interesting anecdotes that relate to the stories. I’ve had so many stories published, reprinted, translated, etc. — but this will be the first time they’re collected together!

To that end, I’m also launching a Kickstarter campaign to help defray the costs of copy editing, original illustrations, and–if we venture into stretch goals territory–some other very cool stuff such as an audiobook version and additional original stories.

If you would like to get a copy of this collection, it would be of significant help to me if you were to pre-order it via Kickstarter rather than waiting until it’s released in February. The more funds I’m able to raise, the better I can make this book.  There are lots of other cool rewards for the backers, too. Notably, every pledge (even if you only pledge a dollar) will receive a FREE e-book 0f Dark Expanse: Surviving the Collapse, a space opera anthology I co-edited with Bill Snee for Deorc Enterprises.

Dark Expanse cover

Even if you can’t pledge  now, please check out the campaign anyhow. There is a video of me in my natural habitat (aka living room), links to some free fiction, and lots of corny jokes. I would also greatly appreciate a signal boost — let your friends (and enemies) know about this book. That way, they can back it, and you can borrow their copy!


I’ve put in what feels like infinite hours editing anthologies of other authors’ work, and while I love doing that, unleashing an entire book of my own fiction onto the world is a really big deal to me. I hope people like it.




4 Responses to Explaining Cthulhu to Grandma and Other Stories

  1. Congratulations Alex. I will support you as I can. This is great news.

    • Alex Shvartsman says:

      Hi Maaja,

      All of my Kickstarter backers will get to read them (though I will keep those updates Private to preserve First Rights). And I will look for ways to make some or all of those stories eventually available to the public!

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