Time Traveler reads for Scatterpod: Dark

SFFaudio Online Audio

{Podcast / Scatterpod}

Michael Bekemeyer of Scatterpod has started a new themed series for the show called Scatterpod: Dark.  As you can imagine these tales concentrate on the darker side of human nature.  Some of the shows are non-fantasy horror stories, but they often have a fantasy element.

The third and most recent installation features a Science Fiction story called Ice Planet written by Michael.  The story is read by none other than myself, The Time Traveler.  Although I host my own show, but with the exception of one short flash fiction, this is my first tour of duty as a narrator.  When Michael sent me the story, I couldn’t refuse.  It was reminiscent of the kind of stories that appeared in the pulp magazines like Planet Stories (with some added expletives).

You can download the episode here
You can subscribe to the Scatterpod by pasting this line in your favorite podcatching device:



The Dial P For Pulp podcast dials up the goodness

SFFaudio Online Audio

Dial P For PulpWith a mere six podcasts completed Dial P For Pulp has already proven itself as a reliable source for great pulpy fiction. The host, David Drage, talks about pulp magazines, pulp authors, pulp books, the pulp era and games inspired by pulp. Older shows include stories by H. Rider Haggard and Robert E. Howard, but it is the most recent show, another Howard tale, that interests us the most. It’s a short story taken for the Second Annual SFFaudio Challlenge!

Fantasy / Horror Audiobook - The Cairn on the Headland by Robert E. HowardThe Cairn on the Headland
By Robert E. Howard; Read by David Drage
Podcaster: Dial P For Pulp
Podcast: March 2008
What lies beneath the stone cairn on the headland of Clontarf, where the Christian Irish defeated the pagan Vikings in pitched battle a thousand years ago? An unscrupulous extortionist plans to uncover the secret. First published in the January 1933 issue of Strange Tales of Mystery And Terror magazine.

Set your podcatcher to pulp, and subscribe to the RSS feed:


Posted by Jesse Willis

The Sonic Society: Pulpy, Mysterious, Funny

SFFaudio Online Audio

The Sonic SocietySeason 3 of The Sonic Society, is well under way, their latest, and possibly greatest episode to date! Have a listen |MP3|.

This ep showcases Broken Sea‘s pulpy adventure series Jake Sampson: Monster Hunter. Scripting for JS: MH is well researched, and very fun. The two episodes included are from the second story arc entitled Jake Sampson And The Tears Of Ra. It is a supernatural tale primarily set in 1920s Egypt. Personally I could do without the footsteps in echoing corridors but other than that this is a highly recommended listen.

Also included in this show is the third episode of the increasingly mysterious audio drama from New Zealand. The show is called Claibourne Claybourne, it feels like a Kiwi version of Twin Peaks. It is quite slick. but I can’t seem to find a website or much information about the program on the web though. Anybody know more about Claibourne? Claybourne‘s own podcast can be found HERE, where it has already concluded with Episode 96!*

Also on tap in this show is the funniest listen ever heard on The Sonic Society, a skit from “wacko parody/absurdist/topical/musical/slapstick radio sketch comedy project” called Wasted Tape. It has nothing to do with Science Fiction, Fantasy, or even Horror but I think you’ll dig it anyway. The subject of the WT players’ jocularity: An all male cast of The Vagina Monologues.

And if you haven’t already, don’t forget to subscribe to The Sonic Society’s podcast feed:


*Thanks Roy!

Posted by Jesse Willis

New Podcast: Dial P For Pulp

SFFaudio Online Audio

Dial P For PulpDial P For Pulp is a podcast for anyone interested in any aspect of the pulp magazines and books. Show No.1, just released, features a book review of Hardboiled Cthulhu, an interview with illustrator Tom Roberts about his work on Doc Savage: The Lost Radio Scripts of Lester Dent and also a reading of the first part of Red Shadows a Solomon Kane story by none other than the legendary pulp-master Robert E. Howard!

The first show is available for download |MP3|or you can subscribe to the RSS feed and get and all subsequent shows automatically:


Review of The Sky People by S.M. Stirling

SFFaudio Audiobook Review

Science Fiction Audiobook - The Sky People by S.M. StirlingThe Sky People
By S.M. Stirling; Read by Todd McLaren
1 MP3-CD or 9 CDs – Approx. 10.5 Hrs [UNABRIDGED]
Publisher: Tantor Audio
Published: 2006
ISBN: 140015345X (MP3-CD), 9781400103454 (CDs)
Themes: / Science Fiction / Alternate History / Adventure / Venus / Dinosaurs / Neanderthals / Airships / Cold War / Pulp /


He swayed back against the recoil and worked the bolt with a quick flick of his first three fingers. A body exploded out of the patch of tall grass he’d aimed at. It was a biped, about his own size and covered in yellow-green feathers except for a crest of crimson plumes that snapped out in reflex as the lizard body writhed in death. The jump put it a good twelve feet into the air; a good deal of its length was the powerful digitigrade legs, both with a great sickle-shaped claw held up against the hock. That flashed out in equally automatic reflex as the vicious predator struck out in one last attempt to disembowel whatever had hurt it. A steam-engine hiss escaped the long fanged mouth, scarlet-purple within, and a spray of blood came with it from the lungs shredded by the powerful expanding bullet.

“Raptor pack!” Marc shouted to the herdsman.

The Sky People fits into that alternate history sub-genre of SF but not in the usual way. Generally, alternate history tales follow the events of the real world with one event changed in the past that creates a different outcome and changes history from that point forward. This may be the South winning the Civil War or Mary, Queen of Scots, becoming the Queen of England. The departing point for this novel took place approximately 200 million years ago. But it didn’t occur so much on our own planet but on Venus and Mars. This means this alternate Earth’s history doesn’t change until the U.S. and Soviet Union start exploring interplanetary space.

The prologue features the landing of an American rocket ship on Venus in 1962. The planet’s surface appears as a lush jungle – then running into view of the film camera is an exotic and beautiful scantily fur-clad female with her clan’s people.

The novel proper then begins 22 years later in 1988. The Cold War has changed from an arms race into a competitive interplanetary space race to explore and stake their claims on Venus and Mars. Marc Vitrac, a citizen of Jamestown, the U.S.-Commonwealth scientific colony, welcomes the newly arrived rocket passengers. Their mode of transportation from the landing site to Jamestown is on the back of dinosaurs through the jungle lushness of Venus.

Meanwhile, on the nearby Venusian continent, the Soviet bloc has set up their own scientific outpost. When one of their shuttle crash lands in the relative vicinity of Jamestown, a rescue party is put together to search for survivors. They travel via airship, and it does not fair well against the natural hostile environment. What’s more, there is a saboteur among the blimp’s crew.

The story grows more intriguing as Marc Vitrac and the stranded party of the airship meet with a clan of primitive humans. The two parties join forces to face off against a tribe of armed Neanderthals!

As you might imagine, this novel reads as a love letter to the early pulp master, Edgar Rice Burroughs. But it’s no mere pastiche of the creator of Tarzan, John Carter of Mars, and most pertinently, Carson of Venus. Stirling uses hard science justifications for his world building. And there’s also more of an emphasis on cultural diversity that you’d expect from a novel written in the 21st century. Sterling is a capable writer, whether it is a turning of a phrase or a description of lush imagery, he’s able to handle it all without getting too far from the gloriously pulpy action. Burroughs is often mentioned in the book as being a major influence on the many of the denizens of the scientific colony.

What exactly happened those 200 million years ago isn’t exactly clear. Why is the planet’s evolution so closely tied to that of Earth’s? The reigning hypothesis in The Sky People is that aliens seeded the planets nearest Earth. There are mysteries here that are to be answered over the length of the trilogy.

Todd McLaren handles the dialects deftly without overemphasizing the accents. Some novels are well-suited to be adapted to audiobook, as if they were written for that treatment. The Sky People is one of these, it makes an ideal audiobook. The large ranch of characters with multi-cultural backgrounds enables Todd McLaren to apply his talent for dialect and keeping the listening experience fresh and varied. Sterling also writes with sounds effects—meaning, he literally writes “Unnnngg-OOOK!” for a bellowing dinosaur, so it’s like the story has the sound effects built in, which McLaren gets to vocalize.

The Sky People is a rare pleasure—well-written, thrill-ride excitement, fun characters, lush settings, and all wrapped-up in a wonderful vocal performance. This is the first novel in a projected trilogy. I sincerely hope that Tantor Audio, with the talents of Todd McLaren, publishes the complete series.

Decoder Ring Theatre’s Summer Showcase begins next weekend

SFFaudio News

Decoder Ring Theatre's Summer Showcase

Decoder Ring TheatreOne week from today a bold new tradition begins! Gregg Taylor and his stupendous crew of audio dramatists begin podcasting their Decoder Ring Theatre SUMMER SHOWCASE. Every 2nd Saturday throughout the summer will see a brand new Decoder Ring production. Here’s the Summer Series rundown:

June 16: The Magic of the Movies by Tim Prasil (suspense)
June 30: The Crasher by Tim Prasil (suspense)
July 14: Deck Gibson and the Stardust Dancers by Matt Wallace (space adventure)
July 28: Deck Gibson and the Last Squadron Fighter by Matt Wallace (space adventure)
Aug 11: I.D. 0 by Gregg Taylor (sci-fi noir)
Aug 25: Slick Bracer and the Giant Nap by Eric Deckers (comedy-mystery)

Even though only three of these shows are SFFaudio related I’ll be listening to each and every one! Gregg and crew are creating unbeatable audio drama year round. And, if you’re not already a fan of either The Red Panda or Black Jack Justice be sure to have a peek at the new Wikipedia entry for Decoder Ring too.