eldritchhobbit: (Me/Sparkly)
My latest science fiction narration is up on the new episode of Escape Pod: the beautiful story “That Game We Played During the War” by Carrie Vaughn. If you listen, I hope you enjoy!

EP581: That Game We Played During the War: Escape Pod
eldritchhobbit: (Default)
My latest science fiction narration is up here on the new episode of Escape Pod. I read the fantastic story “Cherry Squid” by Celeste Hollister. If you listen, I hope you enjoy!
eldritchhobbit: (Sherlock/John & Sherlock computer)
How about Sherlock!?! Wow. Okay, on to links...

I had the pleasure and privilege of narrating a very powerful science fiction story, "In a Manner of Speaking" by Charity Tahmaseb, for Escape Pod. This one will stick with me a long time (in a very good way). One of the podcast listeners on the Escape Pod forum called it "*so good*. Like, be late to work because you have to hear the rest of the story good." I agree. My narration went online this week on Episode 556. If you listen, I hope you enjoy!

In other news, the Hocus Pocus Comics website is aliiiive! Aliiive, I say! You're invited to check us out. Thanks!

eldritchhobbit: (HP/Ravenclaw/sadhappydeep)
I have two items of news today. First, my unabridged narration of Beth Goder's wonderful time-twisting science fiction tale "Murder or a Duck" is up here on Episode 545 of Escape Pod. It's a terrifically entertaining and clever story, and it was great fun to record! If you listen, I hope you enjoy.

Second, my latest critical essay, "Hogwarts in America," is now on newsstands in the December 2016 issue of Reason. (This is the essay to which I referred in my recent interview on the MuggleNet Academia podcast.)

I'll post again when this article goes up online.

eldritchhobbit: (Orphan Black/Cosima)
Hello, everyone! Happy Friday!

* I'm delighted to be part of the ensemble cast who narrated the amazing "The Four Generations of Chang E" by Zen Cho for the latest episode of The Drabblecast. If you listen, I hope you enjoy!

* Here's a new Call for Papers that may be useful: "Monster Media in their Historical Contexts."

* If you're interested in the updates J.K. Rowling has been making at Pottermore and/or the upcoming Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them films, I recommend checking out Chris Calderon's recent "The Allegory of Fantastic Beasts" guest posts on the Hogwarts Professor blog.

* Last, I'm happy to say that my essay "His Fordship in the Capitol and Big Brother in the Districts: The Hunger Games and the Modern Dystopian Tradition" is now out in the collection Critical Insights: The Hunger Games Trilogy edited by Lana Whited.

eldritchhobbit: (Banner Icon)
More podcasting news!

It was a great treat to narrate Matthew Sanborn Smith's wonderful "Cyborg Giraffe Cleans House" for the latest episode of The Drabblecast. Here it is!

If you listen, I hope you enjoy.

eldritchhobbit: (SF/Planets and interplanetary travel)
Huge thanks to the fantastic Norm Sherman, fearless leader of The Drabblecast podcast ("Strange Stories, By Strange Authors, for Strange Listeners!"), who dubbed me "The Neil deGrasse Tyson of Science Fiction" on the recent Episode 329.

And speaking of The Drabblecast, it was my privilege to narrate Stephen Baxter's gorgeous hard science fiction story "The Gravity Mine" for this episode. If you listen, I hope you enjoy!

If you're not listening to the Drabblecast, you're not really a steampunk.
eldritchhobbit: (SF/Cosmic puppets)
Just a quick note to say my latest unabridged narration for StarShipSofa, which is of the wonderful short story "Number 73 Glad Avenue" by Suzanne J. Willis, is now available to stream or download on episode no. 335 of the podcast here. If you listen, I hope you enjoy. (A full list of links to my unabridged dramatic readings is here.)

eldritchhobbit: (fairytales)
Just a quick post to say I'm not dead, I'm simply working very hard at the moment.

A few quick items:

* My latest unabridged narration for StarShipSofa, which is of Mary Soon Lee's powerful short story "Pause Time," is now available to stream or download on the newest episode of the podcast, which is a themed episode celebrating Mother's Day in the UK. If you listen, I hope you enjoy. (A full list of links to my unabridged dramatic readings is here.)

* Award-winning author Sherman Alexie, whose works (such as the film Smoke Signals and novel The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian) I regularly teach, is speaking tonight at Lenoir-Rhyne University. I'll be conducting an hour-long, one-on-one interview with him tomorrow for the campus community. Very exciting!

* I have the best students in the universe. The absolute best.

Nostalgia alert! I recently found a YouTube recording that captures one of my earliest memories of "reading" by myself. My parents gave me the Rocking Horse Records book and 45 LP of Thumbelina. I memorized the narration and songs and then followed along in the booklet. I was perhaps, what, three or four? Something like that. I can't believe I still remember all of the lyrics to "Sleep Well, My Pretty Little Bird" perfectly. Ha! (Spoiler: The swallow isn't really dead!)

This, my friends, kicks it old school.

eldritchhobbit: (Skeleton)
It's list time again! Here are my picks for the spooky podcasts you don't want to miss this Halloween.

In no particular order...

* Welcome to Night Vale: This is a twice-monthly podcast in the style of community updates for the small desert town of Night Vale, featuring local weather, news, announcements from the Sheriff's Secret Police, mysterious lights in the night sky, dark hooded figures with unknowable powers, and cultural events. Think Lake Woebegone meets Stephen King. (It's [livejournal.com profile] gods_lil_rocker's fault I'm completely addicted to this podcast.)

whenyouwalkwith-sh: Welcome to Night Vale: Pilot

* Tales to Terrify: This weekly audio magazine is one of StarShipSofa's siblings in the District of Wonders. Hosted with flair by horror author Larry Santoro ("the Vincent Price of podcasts!"), it includes the best of contemporary horror fiction and nonfiction. (I have narrated three haunting stories for this podcast. Follow the links to hear my reading of “After the Ape” by Stephen Volk, my reading of “Jewels in the Dust” by Peter Crowther, and my reading of “Payback” by P.D. Cacek.)

* Kat & Curt's TV Re-View: In this weekly podcast, bloggers Curtis Weyant and Katherine Sas introduce Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Doctor Who to each other, watching one episode of each per week, sharing fannish delight and critical analysis. Curt, a long-time Buffy devotee, introduces the show to Kat, and newly-certified Whovian Kat acquaints Curt with the Doctor. Join them for a journey through time, space, and the halls of Sunnydale High as they battle demons, aliens, and the inscrutable process of creating quality narrative television. Perfectly timed for October, the latest episode, "Eyeballs and Entrails," includes a close-up look at Buffy's "Halloween" as well as Doctor Who's "The Girl in the Fireplace."

* MonsterTalk: This is the science show about monsters — a free audio podcast that critically examines the science behind cryptozoological (and legendary) creatures, such as Bigfoot, the Loch Ness Monster, and werewolves. Hosted by Blake Smith, Ben Radford, and Dr. Karen Stollznow, MonsterTalk interviews the scientists and investigators who shine a spotlight on the things that go bump in the night. The episode airing dates average out to mean a new show once a month, sometimes more. (Thanks to [livejournal.com profile] ankh_hpl for introducing me to this great show.)

* Classic Tales: Edgar Allan Poe, H.P. Lovecraft, Wilkie Collins, Arthur Conan Doyle, Mary Shelley: what's not to love? This is a fantastic weekly podcast featuring B.J. Harrison's unabridged readings of great -- and often haunting and Halloween-friendly -- fiction.

* Atlanta Radio Theatre Company: Founded in 1984, ARTC is a staple at venues such as Dragon*Con and has a standing program year-round, performing adaptations of works by authors such as H.P. Lovecraft and H.G. Wells live. ARTC podcasts its fantastic productions.

* Pseudopod: One of the oldest horror podcasts and still one of the best, Pseudopod presents fine short horror in audio form weekly.

* The H.P. Lovecraft Literary Podcast: In each weekly podcast, Chris Lackey and Chad Fifer discuss a specific H.P. Lovecraft story – what it’s about, how it reads, why it may have been written and what other works of art it’s influenced. Since concluding Lovecraft’s stories, they’ve been covering other weird fiction that inspired the author, mostly from his essay "Supernatural Horror in Literature." They regularly have talented guest readers and contributing composers for our music sections. The majority of the Lovecraft episodes are free. The podcast is now mostly subscription-only, but it's well, well worth the modest cost.

HP Lovecraft Literary Podcast poster

What other spooky podcasts do you recommend?

“Good things come to those who wait. But so do really malevolent and scary things. In fact, probably more of those. Better keep moving.” - Welcome to Night Vale

“Don't worry. Someday you'll find that person who is perfect for you. They can't hide forever. We have satellites.” - Welcome to Night Vale

“Big news in the science world! Scientists announce that they have discovered the world’s deadliest spider — a previously unknown species that is as hard to spot as its bite is hard to survive. Apparently the specimen was found when your dead body was examined. They say you were a portrait of agony, your skin a myriad of pulsing, angry colors and... Oh... You know what? I’m sorry. This report is from next week. Aw, things have gotten so confusing ever since the wire services started using time machines. Never mind. No need to worry about that report for a few days.” - Welcome to Night Vale
eldritchhobbit: (Edgar Allan Poe/Raven)
On this day in 1849, Edgar Allan Poe died at the age of forty under mysterious circumstances.

For more information, read "Mysterious for Evermore" by Matthew Pearl, an article on Poe's death from The Telegraph. Pearl is the author of a fascinating novel about the subject, The Poe Shadow.

My Friend Edgar!

Four years ago, on the occasion of Poe's 200th birthday, I took over the StarShipSofa Audio Science Fiction Magazine to host an hour-long tribute to this pioneer of the short story, luminary of Gothic horror, father of detective fiction, and giant of science fiction. You can listen to the podcast here at the StarShipSofa website, or download it here, or access it via iTunes. If you listen, I hope you enjoy my celebration of Poe's life, works, and legacy!

The following are some of my favorite links about Edgar Allan Poe:
* PoeStories.com: An Exploration of Short Stories by Edgar Allan Poe
* The Edgar Allan Poe Society of Baltimore
* The Poe Museum of Richmond (See my pictures of the museum here.)

In 2011, I visited his final resting place in Baltimore and took these photos.


Here, free for adoption, is my narration of Poe's "Mellonta Tauta." If you listen, I hope you enjoy!

Here is an excerpt that alternates between the darkly comic and the truly chilling:

"We lay to a few minutes to ask the cutter some questions, and learned, among other glorious news, that civil war is raging in Africa, while the plague is doing its good work beautifully both in Yurope and Ayesher. Is it not truly remarkable that, before the magnificent light shed upon philosophy by Humanity, the world was accustomed to regard War and Pestilence as calamities? Do you know that prayers were actually offered up in the ancient temples to the end that these evils (!) might not be visited upon mankind? Is it not really difficult to comprehend upon what principle of interest our forefathers acted? Were they so blind as not to perceive that the destruction of a myriad of individuals is only so much positive advantage to the mass!"
- "Mellonta Tauta," Edgar Allan Poe

Read the Complete Short Story: Here.
eldritchhobbit: (SF/Weird Tales)
I'm doing double duty on this week's episode of StarShipSofa. I narrate M. Bennardo's haunting story "Water Finds Its Level," and I also kick off a three-part series (recognizing the 125th anniversary of the Autumn of Terror) that explores the ways in which science fiction has wrestled with the mystery of Jack the Ripper. If you listen, I hope you enjoy!

Looking Back on Genre History logo for StarShipSofa

Tonight I'm off to attend a special reception with Jon "Pulitzer Prize" Meacham before seeing him give a public talk at Lenoir-Rhyne University. Should be terrific!
eldritchhobbit: (Book/Swanson)
StarShipSofa has released its 300th episode! Woohoo! This show includes my reading of Harry Turtledove's "Gladly Wolde He Learne" and the audio from our SofaCON SF Quiz, which pitted SF Signal against Geeks' Guide to the Galaxy. (I wrote the quiz questions and kept score.) It's available here, and if you listen, I hope you enjoy.

Tremendous thanks to all of our listeners and family members who have brought StarShipSofa this far, and kudos to our fearless leader, Tony C. Smith. Here's to the next 300 episodes!


A couple of the coolest people I know have started a new publishing enterprise: Antimatter Press, which focuses on speculative fiction. You can find the Call for Submissions for Local Magic here. Expect great things from these folks!
eldritchhobbit: (Trek Reboot/McCoy Silence)
Happy February to all!

* My latest unabridged narration for StarShipSofa, which is of Jerry Oltion's beautiful short story "In the Moment," is now available to stream or download on the newest episode of the podcast. If you listen, I hope you enjoy. (A full list of links to my unabridged dramatic readings is here.)

* I'm very pleased to say that I'll presenting my talk "Why Kendra Dumbledore? Harry Potter in His Native American Context" at the PotterWatch 2013 Conference on Harry Potter. Just a reminder: the call for papers is still open if you're interested in taking part! I hope to see some of you there.

* On the recent "new TV" front, I have two reports:

1. Ripper Street: Brilliant! I'm so pleased to see a well-written and well-researched series based on the time period. I've been flailing and referring to my books in delight after each episode, in appreciation for the dedication and craftsmanship represented by this series. Well done indeed. Beautifully written, gorgeously acted. Two thumbs up!

2. The Following: Alas, I've already kicked this show to the curb. Why on earth would one base a series on Edgar Allan Poe and then not read Poe? If the producers asked an unpaid intern to read the back flap of a Edgar Allan Poe for Dummies, it certainly doesn't show. To quote Sherlock, do your homework. Sheesh. What an insult. And what a waste of significant acting talent.

Happy belated birthday to [livejournal.com profile] time_shark and [livejournal.com profile] alitalf, and happy early birthday to [livejournal.com profile] mayree, [livejournal.com profile] infostudent, [livejournal.com profile] akaihyo, [livejournal.com profile] vonjunzt, [livejournal.com profile] wiredwizard, and [livejournal.com profile] griffith_gwyn! May all of you enjoy many happy returns of the day.

For the love of Trek, here's the Super Bowl trailer. I can't wait for this film (but I will).

eldritchhobbit: (Cabin Pressure/shut your face)
Happy birthday to [livejournal.com profile] i_llbedammned and [livejournal.com profile] ievil_spock_47i, and happy early birthday to [livejournal.com profile] pambachorz, [livejournal.com profile] cyloran, and [livejournal.com profile] mamomo! May all of you enjoy many happy returns of the day!

'Tis time for my end-of-the-year wrap-up post, more for my benefit than anything else. Please excuse the navel-gazing!

What I Read in 2012 )

Works I Wrote/Published in 2012 )

Voice Work Produced in 2012 )

YouTube Videos Released in 2012 )

Virginia hopes everyone is enjoying a wonderful holiday season! WITH TREATS!

eldritchhobbit: (Hobbit/Bilbo walking)
I've seen The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey twice now, and I'm planning to work up a proper review shortly. Nutshell version: it's definitely a flawed film (mostly related to the writing and special effects), but the positives far outweigh the negatives, and I enjoyed it more than any of Jackson's adaptations since The Fellowship of the Ring. The acting, in particular, is fantastic. Martin Freeman is J.R.R. Tolkien's, Ian Holm's, and his own Bilbo Baggins, all at the same time, brilliantly. Richard Armitage's Thorin Oakenshield and Ken Stott's Balin are both exactly how I always imagined them, only better.

A few notes:

* The Call for Papers is now available here for "The Future of Harry Potter: The 2013 PotterWatch Conference" at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte (April 6, 2013). I was the Keynote Speaker for the 2012 PotterWatch Conference, and I had a fantastic time at the event. If you're interested, I highly recommend taking part. (Thanks to [livejournal.com profile] gods_lil_rocker.)

* Great news for fantasy lovers: G.L. Gregg's wonderful novel The Sporran is now available for Kindle.

* My narration of Jeff Carlson's novel The Frozen Sky is now available not only on Audible (where it's currently $12.97 for members as part of the site-wide sale), but also on Amazon and on iTunes.

POLL TIME! What new Spring 2013 TV programs (if any) are you going to watch?

[Poll #1885008]

We're planning to give The Following and Ripper Street a try in January.

For Fall 2012, we "test drove" several disappointing "clunkers" (Elementary, Revolution, 666 Park Avenue, and Copper), but we've ended up enjoying Last Resort thus far - which, of course, means it was cancelled.

(After living in Nashville for seventeen years and knowing so many people in the industry and locations where it's filmed - including my alma mater - we also have to watch Nashville. It's particularly fun to see the talented Kimberly Williams-Paisley in an interesting role. Her husband, Brad Paisley, not only graduated from and supports Belmont University, but he's also said publicly lovely things about the experience and impact of having my husband as his professor, so it's no surprise that I have a huge soft spot for him!)
eldritchhobbit: (Book/Swanson)
Happy 12-12-12 to everyone!

I have a couple of quick audio notes...

* My latest unabridged narration for StarShipSofa, which is a one-hour excerpt from my eleven-hour audiobook of Jeff Carlson's The Frozen Sky, is now available to stream or download on the newest episode of StarShipSofa. (The episode also includes a terrific interview with the author.) If you listen, I hope you enjoy.

* My latest "Looking Back on Genre History" segment for StarShipSofa, which is about James-Fitz O'Brien's pioneering story "The Diamond Lens," is now up at StarShipSofa, as well. You can listen or download it here. An updated list of all of my podcast appearances (with links) is available here. And look - my segment has a new logo! I'm so tickled. I love it!

Looking Back on Genre History logo for StarShipSofa
eldritchhobbit: (Sparkly)
I am most excited to announce that my first "professional" audiobook narration is now available! I recently had the privilege of reading/recording bestselling author Jeff Carlson's remarkable science fiction thriller The Frozen Sky. Thanks to ACX, the resulting eleven-hour audiobook is now downloadable at Audible.com and will be available any moment now via iTunes and Amazon.

Here's the summary: Something is alive inside Jupiter's ice moon Europa. Robot probes find an ancient tunnel beneath the surface, its walls carved with strange hieroglyphics. Led by elite engineer Alexis Vonderach, a team of scientists descends into the dark, where they confront a savage race older than mankind....

You can read my review of the novel here.

frozen sky

If you listen, I hope you enjoy!!!
eldritchhobbit: (fairytales)
Pssst! All fans of The Hobbit! And lovers of fantasy, in general...

My latest offering for "Project Kaitlyn" (stories for my niece) is an unabridged reading of The Marvellous Land of Snergs (1927) by E.A. Wyke-Smith, which J.R.R. Tolkien read to his children and acknowledged as a sourcebook for his The Hobbit. This is a most clever and delightful story. But you don’t have to take my word for it. Take Tolkien’s: “I should like to register my own love and my children’s love of E.A. Wyke-Smith’s Marvellous Land of Snergs...”

Snergs pic

Please feel welcome to download this. If you listen, I hope you enjoy! The entire narration is a seven-ish hours long.

Here are the download links. )
eldritchhobbit: (Edgar Allan Poe/Writing)
I'm back from a most productive and enjoyable experience in DC, and I'll be catching up shortly.

In the meantime, a quick note: as I've been compiling a list of unabridged audio versions of the texts assigned in my upcoming "Science Fiction, Part 1" seminar for my students, I discovered that there's not a convenient and free reading of Edgar Allan Poe's wickedly satirical and clever 1859 short story "Mellonta Tauta" online. (The title translates as "These things are in the future" -- an appropriate sentiment, as the story is set in the year 2848.) I decided to remedy this and record my own.

Here, free for adoption, is my narration of Poe's "Mellonta Tauta." If you listen, I hope you enjoy!

Last but certainly not least, happy birthday to [livejournal.com profile] febobe, and happy early birthday to [livejournal.com profile] ghani_atreides, [livejournal.com profile] gamgeefest, and [livejournal.com profile] janissa11! May all of you enjoy a brilliant day and a wonderful year to come, my friends.

Talking of drag-ropes -- our own, it seems, has this moment knocked a man overboard from one of the small magnetic propellers that swarm in ocean below us -- a boat of about six thousand tons, and, from all accounts, shamefully crowded. These diminutive barques should be prohibited from carrying more than a definite number of passengers. The man, of course, was not permitted to get on board again, and was soon out of sight, he and his life-preserver. I rejoice, my dear friend, that we live in an age so enlightened that no such a thing as an individual is supposed to exist. It is the mass for which the true Humanity cares.
- "Mellonta Tauta," Edgar Allan Poe


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