Well, it’s time to head back to the socially distanced Gershwin Rooms in the geographically distanced Coode Street Motels Six for Gary and Jonathan to spend an hour or so talking about science fiction and the world. Today conversation starts with a continuation of the idea that this is a Golden Age of science fiction, what characteristics might make up that age, whether you can identify great works of 21st Century SF, new work by M. John Harrison,Hugo voting opening online, and much more.
As always, we hope you enjoy the episode!
Left once again to their own devices, Jonathan and Gary turn to the question of what was science fiction’s real golden age—not in terms of overall literary history or the old cliché that “the golden age of science fiction is twelve,” but rather what seemed like a golden age in terms of reading habits: when you fell in love with SF, how the genre continued to be rewarding during that time, and what was especially important about it. For Jonathan, that looked more like the 1980s, while for Gary it was basically the 1950s. Both agreed, however, that the current era might itself be seen as a golden age, for many reasons.
Jonathan and Gary are back with a socially-distanced full-hour podcast. Since last time, Jonathan actually went and read the reviews for the podcast on the iTunes Podcast app where one listener described the Coode Street as being occasionally enlightening, saying when:
“the two hosts are left to their own devices (which is most of the time) they testily chew over a handful of pet topics, usually debating who should win each year’s awards and then whether or not awards mean anything”.
and rated the podcast Three stars.
Perfectly fair. Today’s episode was recorded during the Nebula Awards presentation and days after the announcement of the Locus Awards shortlists. Both feature briefly, but our main topic was not awards. Rather we turned to more fundamental questions involving reasons to be optimistic about science fiction, the role of entertainment in reading SFF, what each of us values most in what we read, and, almost accidentally, some brief previews of exciting novels coming up later this year.
Hopefully the sound on today’s episode is a bit better, the testiness is toned down, and you all enjoy!
It’s been two weeks since Jonathan and Gary sat down to chat for the podcast. In the interests of social distancing, they’ve had a replica of the Gershwin Room built a socially responsible distance away from the original so they can talk safely. This time out they chat about science fiction, what they’re reading, a theoretical fictional clade that encompasses the work of Philip Jose Farmer, Jack Chalker and Lavie Tidhar, and more.
As always, we hope you enjoy the episode and would encourage you to consider donating to Locus or supporting Fran Myman’s Patreon.
This week, returning to our customary format of rambling aimlessly for an hour or so, Jonathan and Gary share observations on what we are learning from our series of Ten Minutes With… podcasts, how the current crisis may or may not be reflected in tomorrow’s SF, the increasing relevance of Kim Stanley Robinson and others who have addressed global issues in the Before Times, the question of whether SF serves more as a mirror or a lamp (to borrow and cheerfully misuse a phrase from M.H. Abrams’s classic study of Romantic literary theory), and. of course, what we’ve been reading and hoping to read in the next few months.