Shortly after I published The Happiest Days of Our Lives , Bill Schafer, who is the publisher and owner of Subterranean Press, contacted me about doing a special limited edition. I discovered Subterranean Press when they published John Scalzi's Questions for a Soldier, and I fell in love with their special editions when I got Charlie Stross' Missile Gap and Neil Gaiman's Coraline. The idea of having my little book treated the same as books by John Scalzi, Elizabeth Bear, Ray Bradbury, and Neal Stephenson was awesome, but I wasn't sure if it was a good idea - I didn't want to put out yet another edition of a book people already owned, and I really didn't want to do something that would devalue the 300.
I talked it over with Anne, sought advice from my friend and editor Andrew, and I asked some friends who have worked with Bill what they thought (it turns out that everyone who works with him adores him, which ended up being very important to me). After a few weeks of consideration, I realized that this was a unique opportunity, and I would be a fool to pass it up.
I got in touch with Bill and accepted his offer. We decided that instead of just doing a different printing of a book people already had, I'd look through the material that just missed the final cut, and put together a special expanded edition. I would also take all those pictures that are on the cover, and create a special photo insert section. (I'm really excited about this; my idea is to create something that looks and feels like a family photo album, complete with handwritten captions.)
I'll be taking the Monolith Press edition (which has almost sold through its second printing!) offline in a couple of weeks, so Bill and I aren't competing with each other. If you've been waiting to get a Monolith Press edition of The Happiest Days of Our Lives, or you wanted a copy of the book in time for the holidays, you should place your order soon. Like a set of car keys dropped into molten lava, it's gone, man.
The Special Edition of The Happiest Days of Our Lives from Subterranean Press is now available for order, and it will ship in Spring of 2009. There are 2000 in the limited hardback edition, and 26 in the leatherbound lettered edition, which will come in a custom traycase.
Andrew and I have been working like crazy on this project for a couple of months, and over the weekend I finally felt like we'd put together something worthy of being called a special edition. I just love it, and I can't wait for everyone to see it.
Edited to add: you may want to check out this awesome news that is awesome, about an audio accompaniment to the special edition.