Episode 307: Theodora Goss and the Alchemist’s Daughter

This week we talk with the multi-talented Theodora Goss, whose forthcoming novel, The Strange Case of the Alchemist’s Daughter, draws not only from her own doctoral research in late Victorian Gothic fiction, but from her earlier story “The Mad Scientist’s Daughter.”

By focusing on a group of women characters drawn from classic tales by Nathaniel Hawthorne, Robert Louis Stevenson, H.G. Wells, and Mary Shelley—and bearing the familiar names of Jekyll, Hyde, Moreau, Rappaccini, and Frankenstein—Goss gives a voice to the largely invisible figures from classic works of terror.

We also touch upon her recent story, “Come See the Living Dryad”—is it fantasy or not?– as well as the reasons behind the appeal of monsters and the monstrous, and the delights of playing with genre.

As always, we’d like thank Dora for making time to talk to us, and we hope you enjoy the episode.

Note: We experienced some technical difficulties with this episode. There were issues with the audio (Dora drops out occasionally). We think the episode is interesting enough to release, but do apologise for the problems and hope you’ll persevere.

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Episode 306: Geoff Ryman and 100 African Writers of SFF

This week we are joined by Nebula, Clarke, Tiptree, Campbell, and World Fantasy Award winner Geoff Ryman to discuss his important new project, 100 African Writers of SF/F, which sees Ryman traversing the African continent meeting new creators of science fiction and fantasy to discuss their careers, their work and the places they find themselves working.

We also discuss the recently announced 2017 nominations for the African Speculative Fiction Society’s Nommo Award, which will be presented later this year, and a diverse range of other work.  Toward’s the end of our discussion Geoff mentions Adofe Atogun’s novel, Taduno’s Song which we promised to list here so listeners could find it.

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As always, we’d like to thank Geoff for making the time to join us, and hope you enjoy the podcast. If you’d like to do some further reading in African SFF some resources are listed below. We’d also strongly recommend checking out the voters packet for the Nommo Awards, which will be released shortly.

Some online resources:

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Episode 305: Kim Stanley Robinson and the Drowning of New York

This week we’re joined by the delightful and provocative Kim Stanley Robinson, to discuss his new novel New York 2140, his “comedy of coping” about dealing with catastrophic climate change in the next century, as well as how his previous novel Aurora challenged one of the cherished ideas in science fiction, the literary and artistic function of exposition in fiction, the relationship of science fiction writers to “futurists” or to MFA programs in creative writing, and his own distinguished career in the context of both science fiction and contemporary environmental literature.

As always, our thanks to Stan for making the time to tallk to us.  We hope you enjoy the episode and will be back next week!

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Slow Saturday

I find myself less and less happy with social media, so I’m going to try (again) to blog here with some reliability. I may even try to get the blog to push posts over to social media and let it rest at that for the moment. Or I won’t.

Slow start to Saturday. Last night was the eldest daughter’s Prom. She was lovely and I was very proud of her: she seemed to have a good time. While she was at the Prom I got news that it looks like I’ve sold a new book, which is nice. I also started to watch a new Netflix documentary series, Five Came Back, which seems terrific.

What else? Coffee, toast and confusion this morning.

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Infinity Wars

Infinity Wars (Solaris, July 2017)
Infinity Wars (Solaris, July 2017). Cover by Adam Tredowski

Well, the time has come. I have just recently delivered the manuscript for my latest anthology, Infinity Wars. It’s the sixth book in the ‘Infinity Project’ and while I’m waiting on copyedits for this one I’m already pushing ahead on the seventh.

Infinity Wars will be out in the world in September of this year, so you’ll be hearing plenty about it from me in the coming months. For the moment, here’s the table of contents:

  • Introduction, Jonathan Strahan
  • Evening of the Span of Their Days, Carrie Vaughn
  • The Last Broadcasts, An Owomoyela
  • Faceless Soldiers, Patchwork Ship, Caroline M Yoachim
  • Dear Sarah, Nancy Kress
  • The Moon is Not a Battlefield, Indrapramit Das
  • Perfect Gun, Elizabeth Bear
  • Oracle, Dominica Phettaplace
  • In Everlasting Wisdom, Aliette deBodard
  • Command and Control, David D. Levine
  • Conversations with an Armory, Garth Nix
  • Overburden, Genevieve Valentine
  • Heavies, Rich Larson
  • Weather Girl, E.J. Swift
  • Mines, Eleanor Arnason
  • ZeroS, Peter Watts

And here’s the cover text:

We have always fought. Tales of soldiers and war go back to the very roots of our history, to the beginnings of the places we call home. And science and technology have always been inextricably linked with the deadly art of war, whether through Da Vinci’s infamous machineries of war or the Manhattan Project’s world-ending bombs or distant starships fighting unknowable opponents.

Oppenheimer once wrote that “the atomic bomb made the prospect of future war unendurable. It has led us up those last few steps to the mountain pass; and beyond there is a different country.” But unendurable or not, future always comes. War was integral to science faction at its birth and remains so today, whether on the page or on the screen.

Infinity Wars asks one question: what would Oppenheimer’s different country be like? Who would fight it? Because at the end of it all, it always come down to a soldier alone, risking life and limb to achieve a goal that may never really make sense at all. How would those soldiers feel? What would they experience?

Infinity Wars tells the tale of soldiers, on the ground and fighting, in the near future and in the farthest reaches of space, using the latest technologies and facing the oldest of fears. New original military science fiction from Eleanor Arnason, Elizabeth Bear, Indrapramit Das, Aliette de Bodard, Nancy Kress, Rich Larson, David Levine, Garth Nix, An Owomoyela, Dominica Phettaplace, E.J. Swift, Genevieve Valentine, Carrie Vaughn, Peter Watts, and Caroline M. Yoachim that will leave you on the edge of your seat.

My sincere thanks to all of the fabulous authors who have written such great stories and agreed to be part of the whole Infinity madness.

Pre-order

You can pre-order Infinity Wars here.

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