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Vital: The Future of Healthcare

by RM Ambrose , Paolo Bacigalupi , David Brin , Tananarive Due , Sally Wiener Grotta , Congyun “Mu Ming” Gu , James Patrick Kelly , Justin C. Key , Seanan McGuire , Annalee Newitz , Julie Nováková , Lola Robles , Eric Schwitzgebel , Alex Shvartsman , Caroline M. Yoachim

Vital anthology
Editions:ePub - First Edition: $ 15.99
ISBN: 9780578351285

Our visions of the future - whether dark or hopeful, thrilling or mundane - have always challenged us to examine our world. How can we improve? What challenges will we face? Are we even ready?

Top Science Fiction authors, collectively holding 25 Hugo, Nebula, Locus, and Sturgeon awards (a few for Vital stories!), employ the power of engaging fiction to explore these questions and today's most critical issues in medicine.

But Vital doesn't stop at speculation. Proceeds will be donated to the COVID-19 Solidarity Response Fund for the World Health Organization, the global guardian of public health, coordinating the worldwide pandemic response.

Read on to build a better future of Healthcare!

Featuring stories by Paolo Bacigalupi, David Brin, Tananarive Due, Sally Wiener Grotta, Congyun ("Mu Ming") Gu, James Patrick Kelly, Justin C. Key, Seanan McGuire, Annalee Newitz, Julie Nováková, Lola Robles, Eric Schwitzgebel, Alex Shvartsman, Caroline M. Yoachim

Edited by RM Ambrose

A Passing Sickness by Paolo Bacigalupi

Carriers by Tananarive Due

Color the World by Congyun “Mu Ming” Gu

Editor - Vital by RM Ambrose

RM Ambrose is the author of this anthology

Fish Dance by Eric Schwitzgebel

Grains of Wheat by Alex Shvartsman

Itsy Bitsy Spider by James Patrick Kelly

One Widow's Healing by Sally Wiener Grotta

Sea Changes by Lola Robles

Second Generation by Julie Nováková

The Algorithm Will See You Now by Justin C. Key

The Giving Plague by David Brin

Treatment Plan by Seanan McGuire

Welcome to the Medical Clinic at the Interplanetary Relay Station | Hours Since the Last Patient Death: 0 by Caroline M. Yoachim

When Robot and Crow Saved East St. Louis by Annalee Newitz

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About the Authors

RM Ambrose

RM Ambrose is a writer of Science Fiction and Fantasy, Editor of Vital: The Future of Healthcare, and currently serves as Assistant Fiction Editor (and sometimes producer and narrator) at the Hugo Award winning StarShipSofa podcast. He attended Taos Toolbox in 2017 and is an Affiliate Member of Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America (SFWA).

He is also Director of Web Services at an Academic Medical System in Southern California. RM has worked for non-profit organizations his entire professional career, and volunteers on the Finance Committees for multiple non-profits (including SFWA).

A lifelong Quaker and pacifist, his speculative essay about inventing rituals in Quakerism, “A Pacifist’s Coming of Age” appears in the February 2015 issue of Friends Journal.

RM draws on his background in Anthropology and Linguistics, music, world travel, Aikido, cycling, and careers in Information Technology, Banking and Higher Education. He speaks Spanish and Tagalog (Filipino), and has a particular interest in the cultures of Latin America and East Asia. He occasionally blogs at Liminal.IT.

Paolo Bacigalupi

Paolo Tadini Bacigalupi (born August 6, 1972 in Paonia, Colorado) is an American science fiction and fantasy writer. He has won the Hugo, Nebula, John. W. Campbell, Compton Crook, Theodore Sturgeon, and Michael L. Printz awards, and has been nominated for the National Book Award. His fiction has appeared in The Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction, Asimov's Science Fiction, and the environmental journal High Country News. Nonfiction essays of his have appeared in and High Country News, and have been syndicated in newspapers, including the Idaho Statesman, the Albuquerque Journal, and the Salt Lake Tribune.

Bacigalupi's short fiction has been collected in the anthology Pump Six and Other Stories (Night Shade Books, 2008). His debut novel The Windup Girl, also published by Night Shade Books in September 2009, won the Hugo, Nebula, and John W. Campbell Memorial Awards in 2010. The Windup Girl was also named by Time as one of the Top 10 Books of 2009. Ship Breaker, published by Little, Brown in 2010, was awarded the Michael L. Printz Award for the "best book written for teens", and was nominated for the National Book Award for Young People's Literature.

David Brin

David Brin is a scientist, tech speaker/consultant, and author. His novels about our survival and opportunities in the near future are EARTH and Existence. A film by Kevin Costner was based on The Postman. His 16 novels, including NY Times Bestsellers and Hugo Award winners, have been translated into more than twenty languages. Earth, foreshadowed global warming, cyberwarfare and the world wide web. An advisor to NASA's Innovative & Advanced Concepts program, David appears frequently on shows such as Nova and The Universe and Life After People, speaking about science and future trends. His first non-fiction book -- The Transparent Society: Will Technology Make Us Choose Between Freedom and Privacy? -- won the Freedom of Speech Award of the American Library Association. His second nonfiction book is VIVID TOMORROWS: Science Fiction and Hollywood (2021). (Website: )

Tananarive Due

TANANARIVE DUE (tah-nah-nah-REEVE doo) is an award-winning author who teaches Black Horror and Afrofuturism at UCLA. She is an executive producer on Shudder’s groundbreaking documentary Horror Noire: A History of Black Horror. She and her husband/collaborator Steven Barnes wrote “A Small Town” for Season 2 of “The Twilight Zone” on CBS All Access. A leading voice in black speculative fiction for more than 20 years, Due has won an American Book Award, an NAACP Image Award, and a British Fantasy Award, and her writing has been included in best-of-the-year anthologies. Her books include Ghost Summer: Stories, My Soul to Keep, and The Good House. She and her late mother, civil rights activist Patricia Stephens Due, co-authored Freedom in the Family: a Mother-Daughter Memoir of the Fight for Civil Rights. She is married to author Steven Barnes, with whom she collaborates on screenplays. They live with their son, Jason, and two cats.

Sally Wiener Grotta

Congyun “Mu Ming” Gu

James Patrick Kelly

James Patrick Kelly has won the Hugo, Nebula and Locus awards. His most recent books are a collection, The Promise of Space (2018), from Prime Books.and a novel, Mother Go (2017), an audiobook original from Audible.

In 2016 Centipede Press published a career retrospective Masters of Science Fiction: James Patrick Kelly. His fiction has been translated into eighteen languages. With John Kessel, he has co-edited five anthologies. He writes a column on the internet for Asimov’s. Coming in January 2020, King Of The Dogs, Queen Of The Cats, a novella from Subterranean Press. Find him on the web at

Justin C. Key

Seanan McGuire

Seanan McGuire was born in Martinez, California, and raised in a wide variety of locations, most of which boasted some sort of dangerous native wildlife. Despite her almost magnetic attraction to anything venomous, she somehow managed to survive long enough to acquire a typewriter, a reasonable grasp of the English language, and the desire to combine the two. The fact that she wasn’t killed for using her typewriter at three o’clock in the morning is probably more impressive than her lack of death by spider-bite.

Annalee Newitz

Julie Nováková

Lola Robles

Eric Schwitzgebel

Alex Shvartsman

Alex Shvartsman is a writer, editor, and translator from Brooklyn, NY. He's the author of The Middling Affliction (Caezik, 2022) and Eridani's Crown (UFO Publishing, 2019) fantasy novels.

Over 120 of his short stories appeared in various magazines and anthologies since 2010, including Analog, Nature, Strange Horizons, etc. He's the winner of the 2014 WSFA Small Press Award for Short Fiction.

He edits the Unidentified Funny Objects series of anthologies and Future Science Fiction Digest. His other projects as editor include The Cackle of Cthulhu (Baen Books), Humanity 2.0 (Arc Manor/Phoenix Pick), Coffee: 14 Caffeinated Tales of the Fantastic (UFO Publishing) and Dark Expanse: Surviving the Collapse (Deorc Enterprises).

You can visit his official home page and blog at

Caroline M. Yoachim

Hugo and three-time Nebula Award finalist Caroline M. Yoachim is the author of over a hundred published short stories, appearing in Asimov’s, Fantasy & Science Fiction, Clarkesworld, and Lightspeed, among other places. Her work has been reprinted in multiple year’s best anthologies and translated into Chinese, Spanish, and Czech. Yoachim’s debut short story collection, Seven Wonders of a Once and Future World & Other Stories, came out in 2016. For more, check out her website at