The SFFaudio Podcast #026


The SFFaudio PodcastThe SFFaudio Podcast #026 – Jesse and Scott argue about how long books should be, talk about audiobooks, audio panels, Audible’s new audio format (higher quality). We also ask the questions:

“If Stephen King was your dad and reading you a bedtime story, would you ever get to sleep?” and “Why does Epic Fantasy have to be so long?”

Talked about on today’s show:
Science Fiction Symposium @ BYU, Writing Excuses podcast, Brandon Sanderson, I Am Not A Serial Killer by Dan Wells, Howard Tayler, The Immortals by Tracy Hickman, The Science Fiction Hall Of Fame Vol. 1, Elantris |READ OUR REVIEW|, L.E. Modesitt, Jr., David Farland, Eric James Stone, James Dashner, Orson Scott Card, Audible’s new Enhanced Audio Format, Blackstone Audio‘s forthcomings: new Harlan Ellison (and old), Stir Of Echoes by Richard Matheson, Passage by Connie Willis, Bellwether by Connie Willis, CBC Radio Between The Covers, Wake by Robert J. Sawyer, Battlestar Galactica, the Story Speiler podcast, And All The Earth A Grave by C.C. MacApp, The Space Merchants by Frederik Pohl and C.M. Kornbluth, 20th Century Ghosts by Joe Hill |2 FREE STORIES|, Heart Shaped Box by Joe Hill, On Writing by Stephen King, Telling Lies For Fun And Profit by Lawrence Block, Inferno by Larry Niven and Jerry Pournelle |READ OUR REVIEW|, Escape From Hell, Wikipedia is full of spoilers, Exit Door Leads In by Philip K. Dick [is full of swearing], The Most Brilliant Sci-Fi Mind on Any Planet: Philip K. Dick |PDF|, Starship Rebel by Mike Resnick |READ OUR REVIEW|, and a 5 sound review of Babylon 5, A Song Of Ice And Fire by George R.R. Martin, Wild Cards would make good audio, HBO’s True Blood, is it all ‘too much conversation, not enough sword?’

Posted by Jesse Willis

Recent Arrivals from Blackstone Audio

SFFaudio Recent Arrivals

The Selected Stories of Philip K. Dick, Vol. 1The Selected Stories of Philip K. Dick, Volume 1
By Philip K. Dick; Read by Various
7 CDs – 8 hours – [UNABRIDGED]
Publisher: Blackstone Audio
Published: 2008
ISBN: 9781433228223

Philip K. Dick stories! Contents: “Autofac”, “Progeny”, “The Exit Door Leads In”, “A Little Something for Us Tempnauts”, “The Last of the Masters”, “The Preserving Machine”, “Novelty Act”, “The War with the Fnools”, and “The Electric Ant”.
The Selected Stories of Philip K. Dick, Vol. 2The Selected Stories of Philip K. Dick, Volume 2
By Philip K. Dick; Read by Various
7 CDs – Approx. 8 Hours [UNABRIDGED]
Publisher: Blackstone Audio
Published: 2008
ISBN: 9781433228308

MORE Philip K. Dick stories! Contents: “Colony”, “Upon the Dull Earth”, “The Short Happy Life of the Brown Oxford”, “Faith of Our Fathers”, “The Days of Perky Pat”, “The Variable Man”, and “I Hope I Shall Arrive Soon”.
Inferno by Larry Niven and Jerry PournelleInferno
By Larry Niven and Jerry Pournelle; Read by Tom Weiner
5 CDs – 5.5 hours – [UNABRIDGED]
Publisher: Blackstone Audio
Published: 2008
ISBN: 9781433259050

Author in hell!

After being thrown out the window of his luxury apartment, science fiction writer Allen Carpentier wakes to find himself at the gates of hell. Feeling he’s landed in a great opportunity for a book, he attempts to follow Dante’s road map. Determined to meet Satan himself, Carpentier treks through the Nine Layers of Hell, led by Benito Mussolini, and encounters countless mental and physical tortures. As he struggles to escape, he’s taken through new, puzzling, and outlandish versions of sin—recast for the present day.
The Sum of All Men by David FarlandThe Runelords: The Sum of All Men
By David Farland; Read by Ray Porter
17 CDs – 20.4 hours – [UNABRIDGED]
Publisher: Blackstone Audio
Published: 2008
ISBN: 9781433226946

I read this one in print a long while back – a great epic fantasy.

David Farland’s acclaimed Runelords series introduces a world where the social structure is based upon the magical exchange of “endowments” such as stamina, grace, and wit. The Runelords are those who receive these endowments from their vassals, becoming superhuman in exchange for the responsibility of caring those they have deprived of strength, or beauty, or sight.

Young Prince Gaborn of Mystarria is traveling in disguise on a journey to ask for the hand of the lovely Princess Iome of Sylvarresta. Armed with his gifts of strength and perception, the prince and his bodyguard stop at a local tavern, where they spot a pair of assassins who have their sights set on Princess Iome’s father. As they race to warn the king, they realize that more than the royal family is at risk—the very fate of the Earth is in jeopardy.
Sherlock Holmes TheatreSir Arthur Conan Doyle’s Sherlock Holmes Theatre
By Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, William Gillette, and Yuri Rasovsky; Performed by a full cast
5 CDs – 5.5 hours – [AUDIO DRAMA]
Publisher: Blackstone Audio
Published: 2005
ISBN: 9781433279916

Audio drama extraordinaire!

Blackstone Audiobooks is pleased to present the first audio recordings ever of the only two Holmes plays written by his creator, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. These new, specially commissioned productions of the Hollywood Theater of the Ear star Audie Award-winning readers Martin Jarvis as Sherlock Holmes and Kristoffer Tabori as Dr. Watson.

In Sherlock Holmes, the Napoleon of Crime, Professor Moriarity plots with would-be blackmailers to have Holmes killed. And the normally love-proof Holmes falls for an exceptional woman. The play was co-authored by the American matinee idol William Gillette, who played the title sleuth. A smash hit from the beginning, the play remained in Gillette’s repertoire until he retired more than thirty years after its premiere.

What is the secret of the shocking death of poor Enid’s sister? What did she mean by her dying words, “the speckled band”? What danger does Enid face from the brutal Dr. Rylott? Only Holmes can scope out the answer and save the helpless girl from certain death. Sir Arthur adapted The Speckled Band (1910) from his own short story of that name. A stage success on three continents, the play hasn’t received a professional revival in eighty-four years.

When Holmes turns fifty, he retires and becomes a beekeeper, creating a crisis for his friend Watson, whose income derives from the Holmes stories he contributes to the Strand magazine. Further, the Doctor owes money to mobsters who want either their cash or his blood. The surprising upshot is, as the headlines proclaim, a Ghastly Double Murder in Famed Detective’s Flat, a one-act comedy by producer-director Yuri Rasovsky, here receiving its audiobook premiere.

Besides winning the prestigious Audie Award, this audiobook won the 2006 Communicator Award for Art/Culture, an international award that recognizes recognizing creative excellence in communications.

Posted by Scott D. Danielson



The SFFaudio PodcastThe SFFaudio Podcast #011 – in which our desperate heroes attempt to display the manliness and fortitude, listing all the recent arrivals, and some recent listens.

Talked about on today’s show:
audiobooks, epic fantasy, science fiction, The Runelords, David Farland, Blackstone Audio, Brilliance Audio, Dragonheart, Todd McCaffery, Pern, Penguin Audio, Jim Butcher, Codex Alera, Furies of Calderon, Kate Reading, Random House Audio, The Widows Of Eastwick, John Updike, Peter Straub, Poe’s Children – an anthology, Stephen King, Star Wars – Millennium Falcon, James Luceno, Macmillan Audio, Robert Jordan, Brandon Sanderson, Michael Kramer, Richard Stark, Books On Tape, Frank Herbert, Heretics Of Dune, the Alan Smithee version of Dune (1984), Neal Stephenson, Anathem (28 CDs long!), The Book Of Lies, Brad Meltzer, Ender In Exile, Orson Scott Card, Team America World Police, Sherlock Holmes Theatre, Yuri Rasovsky, audio drama, 2000X, Repent Harlequin Said The Tick-Tock Man, Harlan Ellison, Mercedes Lackey, Foundation, Wizard’s First Rule, Terry Goodkind, Legend Of The Seeker,, iTunes, Infinivox, Guest Law, John C. Wright, Audio Realms, Shadow Kingdoms, Robert E. Howard, Fallout 3, and Team America: World Police‘s song we’re gonna need a montage!

Posted by Jesse Willis

Five Free Favourites #3

SFFaudio Online Audio

Five Free Favourites
Five more faves, five more of my best bets. These are stories to make your mind say “yum yum” and your wallet say “nightie-night”…

Mech Muse - After A Lean Winter by David FarlandAfter A Lean Winter
By David Farland; Read by Rick Jelinek
1 |M4A| File – Approx. 1 Hour [UNABRIDGED]
Podcaster: MechMuse
Podcast: Spring 2006
I’m very pleased to see all the released MechMuse stories still available online. Of the dozen or so of stories released, I think this one is my favourite. It’s set six months or so after the events of H.G. Well’s The War Of The Worlds and features a protagonist named “Jack London,” who like the other residents of the Yukon, is still struggling against a Martian menace that still survives up there.

The Time Traveler Show - Beyond Lies The Wub by Philip K. DickBeyond Lies The Wub
By Philip K. Dick; Read by Mac Kelly
Podcaster: The Time Traveler Show
Podcast: December 2006
The best Xmas gift I received in 2006 was this podcast short story! This was Dick’s first ever published tale, it’s one of his best too. And, I find holds up to multiple listenings. I recommend it often. Knowledge of Homer’s Odyssey is recommended.

Librivox Audiobook - The Green Odyssey by Philip Jose FarmerThe Green Odyssey
By Philip Jose Farmer; Read by Mark Douglas Nelson
10 Zipped MP3s or Podcast – 6 Hours 6 Minutes [UNABRIDGED]
Published: December 2006
This FREE audiobook was created on a dare. As one of the titles from the first SFFaudio Challenge I asked budding narrators to make single-voiced audiobooks from a list of public domain titles. This was the very first to meet the challenge – it is also one of the best. Set on a grassy plain on an obscure alien planet – it’s fast, funny, and makes for quite a romp. A novel in the spirit of Mark Twain’s A Connecticut Yankee In King Arthur’s Court

Subscribe using this feed:

Science Fiction Audiobook - Star Surgeon by Alan E. NourseStar Surgeon
By Alan E. Nourse; Read by Scott D. Farquhar
14 Zipped MP3 Files or Podcast – 5 Hours 25 Minutes [UNABRIDGED]
Published: October 2007
Dal Tigmar is an alien doctor with a sort of interstellar Médecins Sans Frontières. As a recent graduate of the Galaxy’s most prestigious medical school, on Earth, he’s been trained to treat every disease in the book. But racism isn’t a disease even he can treat. This is a real peppy 50 year old novel, that still crackles with energy. It plays out like a typical Heinleinian juvenile, minus the lectures. You’ll love it.

X Minus 1X-Minus One: The Lifeboat Mutiny
Based on the story by Robert Sheckley; Performed by a full cast
1 |MP3| – Approx. 28 Minutes [UNABRIDGED]
Broadcaster: NBC Radio
Broadcast: September 11, 1956
I find a lot of X-Minus One hit or miss, but this Robert Sheckley story works. In fact, I’ve used the script for it twice just this month! Kids love it, adults love it. It’s funny, and it’s FREE! My only nit-pick is that the actor playing the lifeboat is not emotional enough – he totally underplays the scripted dialogue. When I do this part, I always play it highly emotional.

I’m still soliciting podcasters and bloggers for their lists, if you’ve a batch of five free faves you think just can’t be ignored, either post em below, or send me an email.

Posted by Jesse Willis

Mech Muse Audio Magazine Now Available As A FREE PODCAST

Online Audio

Guh! I’m floored! Mech Muse‘s first issue is now available for free as an ad supported podcast! Previously available for just $7.00 by PayPal the entire first issue is now available FOR FREE!!! Do it now, download all 13+ hours of this amazing first issue via this feed:

The AWESOME stories included in the STUNNING first issue are:

Mech Muse - After A Lean WinterAfter A Lean Winter
By David Farland; Read by Rick Jelinek
1 Mp3 File – 1 Hour 1 Minute 47 Seconds [UNABRIDGED]

Mech Muse - After A Lean WinterOn My Way To Paradise (Chapters 1 – 6 of a serialized novel)
By David Farland; Read by David Wilkinson
3 MP3 Files – Approx 6 Hours [UNABRIDGED – but not yet completed]

Mech Muse - The Second RatThe Second Rat
By David Barr Kirtley; Read by Bob Barnes
1 Mp3 File – 40 Minutes 46 Seconds [UNABRIDGED]

Mech Muse - Veil Of IgnoranceVeil Of Ignorance
By David Barr Kirtley; Read by Rick Jelinek
1 Mp3 File – 25 Minutes 38 Seconds [UNABRIDGED]

Mech Muse - Primary ColorsPrimary Colors
By Richard Raleigh; Read by Bob Barnes
1 Mp3 File – 58 Minutes 28 Seconds [UNABRIDGED]

Mech Muse - The River Is ForeverThe River Is Forever
By Edmund R. Schubert; Read by Rob Moffat
1 Mp3 File – 13 Minutes 33 Seconds [UNABRIDGED]

Mech Muse - After A Lean WinterExpensive Gifts
By Miles Romney; Read by Ken Richman
1 Mp3 File – 41 Minutes 52 Seconds [UNABRIDGED]

Mech Muse - After A Lean WinterThe Elf Trap
By Francis Stephens; Read by Katherine Grey
1 Mp3 File – 58 Minutes 1 Second [UNABRIDGED]

The stories each have a few commericals lasting a couple minutes. They are well produced and don’t interrupt the flow of the storytelling. But before I let you go off perhaps you’ll take a moment and consider reading this interesting email that we recieved from MechMuse editor Miles Romney:

Dear MechMuse friends,

All of us at MechMuse wish to thank you, deeply, for your support and
encouragement over these last several months. We have received so
many kind notes expressing gratitude for the product and enthusiasm
for the future of MechMuse. We accomplished something significant
with our first issue. We released a professionally produced, finely
crafted anthology of audio short content. We are proud of what we
have achieved, and grateful for the contributions of every writer,
performer, artist, musician and listener involved.

While preparing our Summer issue for release, we have also been
working to significantly upgrade our website to accommodate a change
in our business model and positioning. MechMuse will be pursuing a
new revenue strategy based on advertising more than on subscriptions,
and on positioning MechMuse as a free podcast with tasteful audio ads
interspersed within our content. Though our content will be
available with commercials free of charge, our subscribers will
continue to enjoy premium service, including access to full issues at
a higher compression quality and completely without ads.

We have also been altering the layout of to provide
better “at a glance” coverage of each audio feature, and to make it
much, much easier to download and listen to content. With the
release of our updated website, the free and subscriber editions of
MechMuse will be available as RSS podcasts (the subscriber edition,
of course, available securely only to subscribers), which means that
all you should ever need to do is paste our podcast address into your
jukebox application (iTunes, for example) under the “subscribe to
podcast” feature. All tracks will automatically be downloaded into
your jukebox, ready for listening. As new tracks and new issues are
released, they will automatically be imported into your jukebox,
without you ever having to download and manually import another ZIP

On August 11th, we will release our updated website along with the
free edition of our Spring issue. On August 21st, the initial
feature offerings of both the free and subscriber editions of our
Summer issue will go live (additional tracks will be released
incrementally, just as they were in our Spring issue).

Every one of you has helped to make MechMuse happen through your
belief in the project and your appreciation of the publication. We
are especially grateful to those of you who ratified our long-term
vision by purchasing six-issue subscriptions. We thank you for your
patience as we have paused to observe the sales trends following our
creative efforts, and have made decisions to adjust accordingly. We
have not received a single angry note concerning the changes to our
publication schedule, or the delay in publishing our Summer issue.
Many have written kind inquiries expressing encouragement and
anticipation for the upcoming issue. This is extraordinary. In our
subscribers we have found fellow enthusiasts for short audio fiction,
fellow collaborators in building something wholly different on the
web, and friends.

We have faced difficult decisions these past months. Though
enthusiasm for our first issue ran high among a core group of
believers, drawing the attention of the market at large has proven
difficult. Many thousands of dollars have been spent in print
advertising, exhibiting at fan conventions, and distributing coupons
and sample CDs. These efforts have proven ineffective. We remain
confident that ours is a marketable product, but successfully
communicating this new idea to the correct market segment is proving
a real challenge.

In addition to the introduction of the free edition and the upgrades
to, we made a decision to completely eliminate salaries
for all MechMuse employees, and push 100% of subscription proceeds
out to our contributors. Everyone at MechMuse is now working on a
volunteer basis, and as before, all of our talented writers,
performers, artists and musicians are working for royalties. This
has necessitated a cut-back in our production schedule, resulting in
our new quarterly publication plan. This gives us the flexibility to
explore our market niche for longer, without worrying about
significant operating overhead, and also gives us more time to
capitalise on the content of each issue.

These technical changes and shake-ups in organisation and strategy
have put us behind on release of our Summer issue. I want to
reassure you that the audio has been produced, and sounds fabulous.
We have two exciting stories from New York Times Best Seller Kevin J.
Anderson, as well as another story from New York Times Best Seller
David Farland and the continuation of his gripping novel On My Way
to Paradise
. Along with a group of thought-provoking short stories,
we are also releasing the first several chapters of Bram Stoker’s
Dracula, performed stunningly by British voice-actor Ken Richman,
with a haunting original score by James Guymon.

We have a diverse marketing and PR plan that will go into play
following the August 21st release of our Summer issue. With our free
editions, not only will we be able to grab listeners from amongst
those who are interested but not sure enough of this newfangled idea
to put money down, but now that ours is a free offering we’ll have
access to an enormous podcast audience and be able to approach them
through a wider variety of established communities and publications.

This is an exciting time. We’ve had to tighten our belts, yes, but
we feel that our new strategy has tremendous potential. We are
dedicated to making this publication a success so that you, our
listeners, may continue to enjoy well-written, well-produced and
affordable audio short fiction!

Again, we thank you for your patience and understanding. The
confidence of this core group of subscribers is one significant
factor in our hope for the future of MechMuse.


Miles Romney, Editor
MechMuse Audio Magazine

You’ve got to dig people as cool as this! Way-to-go Miles! Way-to-go-everyone who has contributed and is STILL contributing to MechMuse! You guys and gals SERIOUSLY ROCK!

posted by Jesse

Mech Muse’s March/April 2006 Double Issue (Issu…

Online Audio

Mech Muse Issue 1
Mech Muse‘s March/April 2006 Double Issue (Issue 1) is now available! This brand new science fiction and fantasy audio download magazine contains 13 hours of content. Tracks are encoded at a high quality 160 kbps. Though we originally reported it as costing $5.00 USD per issue the price is actually $7.00 USD or $35.00 for a six issue subscription.

Stories included in the first issue are:

After A Lean Winter by David Farland
On My Way To Paradise (Part I of a serialized novel) by David Farland
The Second Rat by David Barr Kirtley
Veil Of Ignorance by David Barr Kirtley
Primary Colors by Richard Raleigh
The River Is Forever by Edmund R. Schubert
Expensive Gifts by Miles Romney
The Elf Trap by Francis Stephens

There are also a column on film and other non-fiction audio features still forthcoming.

Mech Muse guarantees access to a purchased issue for a minimum of 60 days after purchase, and a possibility after that. Also of note are the abilities to download either in a ZIP file or by RSS! Another bonus is what appears to be full downloadable cover art for each individual tale.

The Mech Muse website looks really terrific check it out HERE.

posted by Jesse Willis