Hodder Studio has secured San Francisco-based writer Kate Folk’s debut short story collection Out There, which is to be adapted for the screen by Sharon Horgan for Hulu.
Kwaku Osei-Afrifa, editorial assistant at Hodder Studio, negotiated a deal for UK and Commonwealth rights for the collection and an untitled novel from Denise Cronin, vice-president of subsidiary rights at Random House US. It will be published simultaneously in April 2022 with the novel following in 2024.
The blurb reads: “A genre-bending compilation of tales combining science fiction, horror, and black comedy, Out There is a deliciously incisive take on our life in the digital age. These stories pose that despite how connected we may seem, we can still be so alone when we are faced with the void. Folk’s skill lies in softening the terror of searching for connection and she is ultimately hopeful about us finding it.”
Hulu has optioned a TV series adaptation of the stories “Out There” and “Big Sur”, the thematic bookend stories in the collection, with Folk serving as executive producer and co-writing with Sharon Horgan of TV show “Catastrophe”.
Folk’s short stories and essays are featured in the New Yorker, New York Times Magazine and Granta among others. She was recently a Wallace Stegner Fellow in fiction at Stanford University and lives in San Francisco.
Osei-Afrifa said: “Since reading the title story in the New Yorker last April I have been obsessed with this collection. Kate is frighteningly talented, eviscerating this thing we call life with discerning absurdity. Some early readers have been incredibly glowing about the stories and April cannot come fast enough. My editor-in-crime Clio Seraphim [Penguin Random House US] and I have thoroughly enjoyed every step of this journey and having the chance to ride along in the stunning imagination that Kate possesses.”
Folk commented: “It's been a true joy to work on this book with Kwaku. I could not ask for more from an editor. Their insight, enthusiasm, and keen attention to detail allowed these stories to shine more brightly than before. I'm so excited for Hodder Studio to bring Out There to the UK, and I'm grateful to have such an amazing team spanning both sides of the pond.”