A Good Story Is Hard To Find 023: Waystation by Clifford D. Simak

November 17, 2011 by · Leave a Comment
Filed under: Online Audio 

SFFaudio Online Audio

A Good Story Is Hard To FindSFFaudio’s sister podcast, if there is such a thing, must be A Good Story Is Hard To Find. It’s like a slimmed down and Catholicized version of The SFFaudio Podcast. At the beginning of every show Scott and Julie describe the show as a podcast “where two Catholic friends talk about popular the books and movies they love, and the one reality we see beneath.” Now while I’m a bit suspicious of that “one reality” (especially after reading a Philip K. Dick story) I still love the show to bits. Scott and Julie, the participants, talk intelligently about great books and movies. Their latest book is a great favourite of mine:

Way Station by Clifford D. Simak |READ OUR REVIEW|.

Have a listen |MP3|.

Podcast feed: http://feeds.feedburner.com/AGoodStoryIsHardToFind

And while you’re listening check out these great Wood illustrations from the original serialization of Way Station (under the title Here Gather The Stars) in Galaxy Science Fiction June and August 1963:

Here Gather The Stars by Clifford D. Simak - Illustration by Wood
Here Gather The Stars by Clifford D. Simak - Illustration by Wood
Here Gather The Stars by Clifford D. Simak - Illustration by Wood
Here Gather The Stars by Clifford D. Simak - Illustration by Wood
Here Gather The Stars by Clifford D. Simak - Illustration by Wood
Here Gather The Stars by Clifford D. Simak - Illustration by Wood
Here Gather The Stars by Clifford D. Simak - Illustration by Wood
Here Gather The Stars by Clifford D. Simak - Illustration by Wood
Here Gather The Stars by Clifford D. Simak - Illustration by Wood

Posted by Jesse Willis

SFFaudio Challenge #6

November 11, 2011 by · 8 Comments
Filed under: Commentary 

SFFaudio Commentary

The SFFaudio Challenge Number SixTHE CHALLENGE:
This is our 6th Annual SFFaudio Challenge. Every November 11th, for the last six years, we’ve offered the following challenge to SFFaudio readers:

“We’ll give you an audiobook if you make one for everyone else.”

That deal still holds. We’ll get you an audiobook if you make make an audiobook out of one of the public domain etexts we suggest. All you’ll need to do is claim a title (by email), record the audiobook, using your own human voice (sorry no robots), and follow the rules (see the first comment of this post for the rules). Some titles will not be public domain in all countries, but this is a global challenge. We’ve also added, for the very first time, a French language title!

Still feeling a little unclear on how it all works? Then have a look at our past SFFaudio CHALLENGES:

|OUR FIRST CHALLENGE|
|OUR SECOND CHALLENGE|
|OUR THIRD CHALLENGE|
|OUR FOURTH CHALLENGE|
|OUR FIFTH CHALLENGE|

PRIZES:
Tantor MediaThis year we’re doing something a bit different with prizes, something better. Instead of offering those unwieldy physical copies we’ve got DRM-FREE MP3 downloads for you! This not only saves us on postage it also allows for a much greater selection of audiobooks! For each audiobook you complete, you can choose one of more than 1,300 titles available! All prizes this year come courtesy of Tantor Media.

CHALLENGE TITLES:
The Friendly Demon (aka The Devil Frolics With A Butler) by Daniel Defoe |HORRORMASTERS|PDF| (short story)

Seventh Victim by Robert Sheckley |PDF| (short story)*

CLAIMED BY CAINE DORR NOVEMBER 12, 2011

Untouched By Human Hands (aka One Man’s Poison) by Robert Sheckley |PDF| (short story)*

Writing Class by Robert Sheckley |RTF| (short story)*

CLAIMED AND COMPLETED BY WILLIAM COON (of Elquoent Voice) ON NOVEMBER 13, 2011

The Purple Cloud by M.P. Shiel |GUTENBERG| (novel)

City At World’s End by Edmond Hamilton |ARCHIVE.ORG| (novel)

The Common Man by Mack Reynolds |GUTENBERG| (short story)

The Ship Of Ishtar by A. Merritt |GUTENBERG AUSTRALIA| (novel)

Supernatural Horror In Literature by H.P. Lovecraft |WIKISOURCE|GUTENBERG AUSTRALIA| (essay)

Almuric by Robert E. Howard |WIKILIVRES|GUTENBERG AUSTRALIA| (novel)

Nineteen Eighty-Four by George Orwell |GUTENBERG AUSTRALIA| (novel)

Animal Farm by George Orwell |GUTENBERG AUSTRALIA| (novel)

Empire by Clifford D. Simak |GUTENBERG| (novel)**

CLAIMED BY BILL KIRBY ON JANUARY 3, 2012

The Great Potlatch Riots by Allen Kim Lang |GUTENEBERG| (short story)

The Dominion In 1983 by Ralph Centennius |GUTENBERG| (30 pages)

Ten From Infinity by Paul W. Fairman |GUTENBERG| (novel)

CLAIMED BY KAREN SAVAGE ON NOVEMBER 11, 2011

No Great Magic by Fritz Leiber |GUTENBERG| (short story)

CLAIMED BY DANIEL GURZYNSKI ON NOVEMBER 21, 2011

The Syndic by C.M. Kornbluth |RTF| (novel)*

CLAIMED BY MARK NELSON ON NOVEMBER 13, 2011

Our first French audiobook:

La Vie Électrique by Albert Robida |GUTENBERG| (novel)

So, who wants to sign up?

[*With special thanks to Rick Jackson of Wonder Publishing for selection advice **This etext was part of SFFaudio Challenge #2, but wasn’t completed]

Posted by Jesse Willis

Anthony Boucher’s All Stars: 52 best SF books (+6 More) and 12 Fantasy books

April 1, 2011 by · Leave a Comment
Filed under: Commentary 

SFFaudio Commentary

The Magazine Of Fantasy And Science Fiction - October1958

The “All Star Anniversary Issue” of Fantasy And Science Fiction Magazine (for October 1958) featured famed editor Anthony Boucher’s regular “Recommending Reading” column – but with a twist. In celebration of the magazine’s 9th anniversary Boucher challenged himself to create a list of “Fifty Review Copies I Would Not Part With.” He failed in this herculean task – he just couldn’t pair down the list to fifty (even by restricting what would qualify in a number of ways). Instead, he ended up listing 52 Science Fiction novels or collections that he had no hand in publishing, another six that he did, and twelve Fantasy titles that were absolute must keepers as well. Of them Boucher wrote:

“These are novels and collections which have, from 1949 through 1957, given intense pleasure to a man professionally, obligated to read every s.f. book published in America; and I venture the guess that any reader, novice or habitué of our field, will find stimulation and delight in a high number of these titles.”

That’s good enough for me! I have reproduced as Boucher listed them (in alphabetical order by author). But I’ve added links to extant audiobook editions:

Boucher’s 52 best SF books:
Brain Wave by Poul Anderson |BLACKSTONE AUDIO|

I, Robot by Isaac Asimov [COLLECTION] |READ OUR REVIEW|
The Caves Of Steel by Isaac Asimov |READ OUR REVIEW|
The Naked Sun by Isaac Asimov |READ OUR REVIEW|
Earth Is Room Enough by Isaac Asimov [COLLECTION]

The Demolished Man by Alfred Bester
The Stars My Destination by Alfred Bester

The Long Tomorrow by Leigh Brackett

The Martian Chronicles by Ray Bradbury [COLLECTION] |READ OUR REVIEW|

What Mad Universe by Fredric Brown
The Lights In The Sky Are Stars by Fredric Brown
Angels And Spaceships by Fredric Brown [COLLECTION]

Cloak Of Aesir by John W. Campbell [COLLECTION]

No Blade Of Grass / The Death Of Grass by John Christopher |AUDIBLE FRONTIERS|

Prelude To Space by Arthur C. Clarke
Expedition To Earth by Arthur C. Clarke [COLLECTION]
Against The Fall Of Night (and The City And The Stars) by Arthur C. Clarke

Mission Of Gravity by Hal Clement

The Wheels Of If by L. Sprague de Camp [COLLECTION]
Rogue Queen by L. Sprague de Camp

Nerves by Lester Del Rey

Eye In The Sky by Philip K. Dick |BLACKSTONE AUDIO|

The Third Level by Jack Finney [COLLECTION]

The Man Who Sold The Moon by Robert A. Heinlein [COLLECTION]
The Green Hills Of Earth by Robert A. Heinlein [COLLECTION] |BLACKSTONE AUDIO|BOOKS ON TAPE|CAEDMON|

Bullard Of The Space Patrol by Malcolm Jameson

Takeoff by C.M. Kornbluth
The Explorers by C.M. Kornbluth [COLLECTION]
Not This August by C.M. Kornbluth

Gather, Darkness by Fritz Leiber
The Green Millennium by Fritz Leiber |WONDER AUDIO|

The Big Ball Of Wax by Shepherd Mead

Shadow On The Hearth by Judith Merrril

Shadows In The Sun by Chad Oliver
Another Kind by Chad Oliver [COLLECTION]

A Mirror For Observers by Edgar Pangborn

The Space Merchants by Frederick Pohl and C.M. Kornbluth

The Other Place by J.B. Priestly [COLLECTION]

Deep Space by Eric Frank Russell [COLLECTION]

Untouched by Human Hands by Robert Sheckley [COLLECTION]

City by Clifford D. Simak [COLLECTION] |AUDIBLE FRONTIERS|
Strangers In The Universe by Clifford D. Simak

Without Sorcery by Theodore Sturgeon [COLLECTION]
The Dreaming Jewels by Theodore Sturgeon |BLACKSTONE AUDIO|
More Than Human by Theodore Sturgeon |BLACKSTONE AUDIO|

Slan by A.E. van Vogt |BBC AUDIOBOOKS AMERICA|
The Weapon Shops and The Weapon Makers by A.E. van Vogt

Player Piano by Kurt Vonnegut Jr. |AUDIBLE MODERN VANGUARD|

A Martian Odyssey by Stanley Weinbaum [COLLECTION] |LIBRIVOX|

The Throne Of Saturn by S. Fowler Wright

The Day Of The Triffids by John Wyndham |AUDIBLE FRONTIERS|
Re-Birth/The Chrysalids by John Wyndham |AUDIBLE FRONTIERS|

Excellent titles that had origins on the pages of Fantasy And Science Fiction:

Bring The Jubilee by Ward Moore

Tales From Gavagan’s Bar by Fletcher Pratt and L. Sprague de Camp [COLLECTION]

The Sinister Researches Of C.P. Ransom by H. Nearing Jr. [COLLECTION]

One In Three Hundred by J.T. McIntosh

The Star Beast by Robert A. Heinlein |FULL CAST AUDIO|
The Door Into Summer by Robert A. Heinlein |BLACKSTONE AUDIO|

Boucher’s best dozen Fantasy books:

The Devil In Velvet by John Dickson Carr

Fancies And Goodnights by John Collier [COLLECTION]

The Worm Ouroboros by E.R. Eddison |MARIA LECTRIX|

The Circus Of Dr. Lao by Charles G. Finney

The Private Memoirs And Confessions Of A Justified Sinner by James Hogg

Fear by L. Ron Hubbard |GALAXY PRESS|

The Lottery by Shirley Jackson [COLLECTION] |BBC AUDIOBOOKS AMERICA|

The Ghostly Tales by Henry James [COLLECTION]

Pogo by Walt Kelly

Till We Have Faces by C.S. Lewis |BLACKSTONE AUDIO|

Further Fables For Our Times by James Thurber [COLLECTION]

The Lord Of The Rings by J.R.R. Tolkien |RECORDED BOOKS|

Posted by Jesse Willis

The SFFaudio Podcast #076 – READALONG: Mindswap by Robert Sheckley

September 27, 2010 by · 3 Comments
Filed under: Podcasts 

Podcast

The SFFaudio PodcastThe SFFaudio Podcast #076 – Jesse talks with Gregg Margarite, Julie Davis and Luke Burrage about Robert Sheckley’s 1966 novel Mindswap.

Talked about on today’s show:
Blackstone Audiobooks audiobook edition of Mindswap by Robert Sheckley, The Status Civilization by Robert Sheckley, Rick Jackson’s Wonder Audio version of The Status Civilization, Marvin, existentialism, Jean-Paul Sartre, Søren Kierkegaard and Martin Heidegger, Mars, swapping minds vs. swapping bodies, xenophiles, “metaphoric deformation”, one of the greatest scenes of comedy ever in a novel, mind vs. body, mind vs. brain, consciousnesses and memories, Mindswap is “a subversive ontological satire,” Gulliver’s Travels by Jonathan Swift, extracting sunlight from a cucumber, “theory of searches”, existentialism for a Science Fiction audience, Voltaire’s Candide, Douglas Adams, The Hitch-Hiker’s Guide To The Galaxy, balance is superfluous, “contemplation is the most direct form of involvement (and so it is avoided by everyone)”, Bertrand Russell, New York, solipsism, cognitive dissonance, Mark Twain, A Connecticut Yankee In King Arthur’s Court, Future Shock by Alvin Toffler, Chekhov’s gun, comedic soliloquies, speaking with a lisp, the twisted world, the interventionist fallacy, the authorial sting, “the ripe greenness of her ovipositors”, Luke defends the honour of the name Kathy, Marvin The Paranoid Android vs. Marvin The Martian, Roland Barthes, absurdity is funny, a pseudo-Gulliver’s Travels, the mechanics of the humor, Gregg’s top five written objects, Laputa, “the pinnacle of satire”, A Modest Proposal, “everything is bullshit”, Dr. Jeykll And Mr. Hyde by Robert Louis Stevenson (our next readalong), Dracula, Lair Of The White Worm, Ken Russell, Gothic, On The Buses, Africa, “Africa? Where do you mean in Africa?”, Namibia vs. South Africa, Kilimanjaro vs. Everest, a set can’t be a member of itself, “it’s all a big giant steaming pile of absurdity” vs. “the glory and excitement of being alive”, monsignors vs. bishops, “you’re just not in our target market”, “I don’t believe what someone believes has to be true or not”, spiritual experiences vs. explanations of them, there’s a helmet for that (spiritual experiences), the charismatic formula, true vs. honest, Luke’s blog post on spiritual experiences and atheism, Thomas Aquinas, “truth is relative”, Gregg has big sets!, Julie is completely talk-able, Margaret Atwood history denier, the Apollo missions, making stupid easier, The Daily Show with Jon Stewart is a great aggregator , Glenn Beck’s snakedance, smart people are making the universe complex, “the enemy of nuance” vs. “the enemy of history”, rejecting reality, why they argued with Jefferson, their totally alienable, “this is why I watch 30 Rock“, Kids In The Hall, you have the potential of niche markets, ‘the United States is the greatest country in the world (with the greatest failures and great achievements)’, nobody cares about Africa (or South America), not knowing the Prime Minister of Canada vs. not knowing the Governor of Guam, Peter F. Hamilton’s latest book, a bunch of fun loving existentialists, Sheckley’s short stories, City by Clifford D. Simak (it has conflict), Sheckley at his best is Voltaire and soda (or Voltaire and tonic), Flannery O’Connor, the keyword game, Earth Abides by George R. Stewart, art and craft are the same thing, craftsmen aren’t artists, I Hate Music, “I’m NOT tone deaf!”, Charlie Parker, iTunes=music, mp3=music, “it’s like I’m gay and I’m the only one”, This Is Your Brain On Music, Gregg is too emphatic (?), “I – do not – sound – like – William Shatner.”, Weird Al Yankovic, “my guitar is the best girlfriend I ever had.”

Gray Morrow‘s illustrations of Mindswap from the June 1965 of Galaxy:

Galaxy June 1965 - MINDSWAP by Robert Sheckley - Cover

Galaxy June 1965 - MINDSWAP by Robert Sheckley - Page 7

Galaxy June 1965 - MINDSWAP - Page 9

Galaxy June 1965 - MINDSWAP by Robert Sheckley - Page 27

Galaxy June 1965 - MINDSWAP by Robert Sheckley - Page 53

Galaxy June 1965 - MINDSWAP by Robert Sheckley - Pages 67 and 85

DELL - Mindswap by Robert Sheckley

Posted by Jesse Willis

LibriVox: X-Minus One Project

August 19, 2010 by · Leave a Comment
Filed under: Audio Drama, Online Audio 

SFFaudio Online Audio

LibriVoxNow here is a cool project, and it’s one recently mentioned on one of our podcasts! It’s an effort to source and record and proof the “public domain science fiction stories which were turned into half-hour plays for the classic mid-1950’s American radio series, X Minus One.” This collection includes eight such stories. Which one do you think should be remade as a modern audio drama?


LIBRIVOX - X-Minus One ProjectX Minus One Project
By various; Read by various
9 Zipped MP3 Files or Podcast – Approx. 7 Hours 35 Minutes [UNABRIDGED]
Publisher: LibriVox.org
Published: August 9, 2010

Podcast feed: http://librivox.org/rss/4249

iTunes 1-Click |SUBSCRIBE|

LIBRIVOX - The Coffin Cure by Alan E. NourseThe Coffin Cure
By Alan E. Nourse; Read by Max Lindberg
1 |MP3| – Approx. 41 Minutes [UNABRIDGED]
Publisher: LibriVox.org
Published: August 9, 2010
First published in Galaxy April 1957. The X-Minus One adaptation was first broadcast November 21st 1957.

LIBRIVOX - Death Wish by Robert SheckleyDeath Wish
By Robert Sheckley; Read by Gregg Margarite
1 |MP3| – Approx. 24 Minutes [UNABRIDGED]
Publisher: LibriVox.org
Published: August 9, 2010
Compared with a spaceship in distress, going to hell in a handbasket is roomy and slow! First published in Galaxy Science Fiction June 1956.

LibriVox - The Defenders by Philip K. DickThe Defenders
By Phillip K. Dick; Read by Tom Weiss
1 |MP3| – Approx. 1 Hour [UNABRIDGED]
Publisher: LibriVox.org
Published: August 9, 2010
No weapon has ever been frightful enough to put a stop to war—perhaps because we never before had any that thought for themselves! First published in Galaxy Science Fiction January 1953.

LibriVox - The Moon Is Green by Fritz LeiberThe Moon Is Green
By Fritz Leiber; Read by Juli Carter
1 |MP3| – Approx. 37 Minutes [UNABRIDGED]
Publisher: LibriVox.org
Published: August 9, 2010
Anybody who wanted to escape death could, by paying a very simple price—denial of life! First published in Galaxy Science Fiction April 1952.

LIBRIVOX - The Old Die Rich by H.L. GoldThe Old Die Rich
By H.L. Gold; Read by Juli Carter
2 MP3 Files – Approx. 1 Hour 5 Minutes [UNABRIDGED] –
Publisher: LibriVox.org
Published: August 9, 2010
First Published in the March 1953 issue of Galaxy magazine.
Part 1 |MP3| Part 2 |MP3|

LIBRIVOX - Project Mastodon by Clifford D. SimakProject Mastodon
By Clifford D. Simak; Read by Gregg Margarite
1 |MP3| – Approx. 1 Hour 10 Minutes [UNABRIDGED]
Publisher: LibriVox.org
Published: August 9, 2010
“An interesting variation on the standard time-machine theme. No loops encountered. The short story is tersely written and the end, when technicalities clear, abrupt. This makes it an early example of hard SF with a time machine.” First published in the March 1955 issue of Galaxy magazine.

LIBRIVOX - Time And Time Again by H. Beam PiperTime And Time Again
By H. Beam Piper; Read by Bellona Times
1 |MP3| – Approx. 45 Minutes [UNABRIDGED]
Publisher: LibriVox.org
Published: August 9, 2010
To upset the stable, mighty stream of time would probably take an enormous concentration of energy. And it’s not to be expected that a man would get a second chance at life. But an atomic might accomplish both— First published in Astounding Science Fiction April 1947.

LIBRIVOX - The Tunnel Under The World by Frederik PohlThe Tunnel Under The World
By Frederik Pohl; Read by Gregg Margarite
1 |MP3| – Approx. 1 Hour 13 Minutes [UNABRIDGED]
Publisher: LibriVox.org
Published: August 9, 2010
Pinching yourself is no way to see if you are dreaming. Surgical instruments? Well, yes—but a mechanic’s kit is best of all! First published in the January 1955 issue of Galaxy Science Fiction. The X-Minus One adaptation was first broadcast March 14, 1956.

And here are the X-Minus One adaptations:

The Coffin Cure |MP3|[RADIO DRAMA]
Death Wish |MP3| [RADIO DRAMA]
The Defenders |MP3| [RADIO DRAMA]
The Moon Is Green |MP3| [RADIO DRAMA]
The Old Die Rich |MP3| [RADIO DRAMA]
Project Mastodon |MP3| [RADIO DRAMA]
Time And Time Again |MP3| [RADIO DRAMA]
The Tunnel Under The World |MP3| [RADIO DRAMA]

[Thanks also to by BellonaTimes, Betty M., Annise, Gregg Weeks and the crew at Distributed Proofreaders]

Posted by Jesse Willis

LibriVox: The Thing In The Attic by James Blish

August 19, 2010 by · 2 Comments
Filed under: Online Audio 

SFFaudio Online Audio

LibriVoxGregg Margarite has narrated The Thing In The Attic for LibriVox. This is one of James Blish’s “Pantropy” tales and makes up one quarter of his fixup novel The Seedling Stars. Here’s a snippet from the Wikipedia entry on pantropy:

“Pantropy is a hypothetical process of space colonization in which rather than terraforming other planets or building space habitats suitable for human habitation, humans are modified (for example via genetic engineering) to be able to thrive in the existing environment.”

Other examples of pantropic fiction include Olaf Stapledon’s Last And First Men, Clifford D. Simak’s Desertion, Poul Anderson’s Call Me Joe and Frederick Pohl‘s Man Plus.

LIBRIVOX - The Thing In The Attic by James BlishThe Thing In The Attic
By James Blish; Read by Gregg Margarite
2 Zipped MP3 Files or Podcast – Approx. 1 Hour 22 Minutes [UNABRIDGED]
Publisher: LibriVox.org
Published: August 7, 2010
Honath the Pursemaker is a heretic. He doesn’t believe the stories in the Book of Laws which claims giants created his tree-dwelling race. He makes his opinion known and is banished with his infidel friends to the floor of the jungle where dangers abound. Perhaps he’ll find some truth down there. First published in the July, 1954 edition of If, Worlds of Science Fiction magazine.

Part 1 |MP3| Part 2 |MP3|

Podcast feed: http://librivox.org/rss/4571

iTunes 1-Click |SUBSCRIBE|

[Thanks also to Betty M. and Barry Eads]

Posted by Jesse Willis

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