Deb Taber

Deb Taber


B.A., The Evergreen State College, 1996


Lurking Behind Words -- Deb Taber


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Biographical Note

Deb Taber is a writer, editor, and Pacific Northwesterner, complete with the standard-issue coffee addiction and an irrational affection for giant slugs. Her dark fantasy stories have appeared in such venues as Fantasy Magazine and River: An Anthology, and her science fiction short stories have appeared in various anthologies, including Art From Art and Dark Futures. Necessary Ill is her first novel.

deb taber necessary ill book

Publication Type


Latest Publication Title

Necessary Ill, Aqueduct Press, 2013.

Other Publications

Short Stories:
"Scatalogical" in River: An Anthology (ed. Alma Alexander)
"Stem, Stone, and Bone" in Fantasy Magazine
"The Summoning of Spirits Too Far from Home" in Fantasy Magazine
"Alien Spaces" in Dark Futures (ed. Jason Sizemore)

Publication Information

Editorial review from Library Journal:
The world of men and women, gendered humans, is out of control. Overpopulation and wasted resources portend an environmental collapse. Jin and other nongendered humans, or neuters, take it upon themselves to spread viruses intended to cull the human race. When Sandy, a young woman who has lived with hardship and brutality, encounters Jin and its fellow neuters and joins them in their secret enclave deep in the Carlsbad Caverns, the scene is set for a new way of life for humankind, gendered and nongendered alike. VERDICT: Taber’s debut novel presents an all-too-credible dystopic future world and, in Jin, a complex character whose mind approaches the world and its priorities in a very different way. The characterization of truly genderless individuals—not androgynes or hermaphrodites—and the portrayal of an approach to the world that is both ruthless and compassionate make this an excellent candidate for book discussion groups and provide strong evidence for the availability of significant genre literature. Highly recommended.

How did Evergreen help you in your career?

Courses at Evergreen introduced me to authors, particularly female authors in speculative fiction, who opened up a new side of the genre for me: serious, thought-provoking works that use the tools of science fiction to examine everyday life. In particular, Octavia Butler, Connie Willis, and Karen Joy Fowler were writers I became familiar with through Evergreen coursework, and Butler's work especially had a profound effect on my direction as a writer.