Posts Tagged ‘Winter Holidays’

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Cast of Wonders 282: Dreidel Of Dread: The Very Cthulhu Chanukah


Dreidel Of Dread: The Very Cthulhu Chanukah

by Alex Shvartsman

Twas the night before Chanukah, and all through the planet, not a creature was stirring except for the Elder God Cthulhu who was waking up from his eons-long slumber. And as the terrible creature awakened in the city of R’lyeh, deep beneath the Pacific Ocean, and wiped drool from his face-tentacles, all the usual signs heralded the upcoming apocalypse in the outside world: mass hysteria, cats and dogs living together, and cable repairmen arriving to their appointments within the designated three-hour window.

“This will not do,” said Chanukah Henry. “I will not have the world ending on my watch, not during the Festival of Lights.” (Continue Reading…)

Episode 225: Little Wonders 9 – Comfort Food


• Authors: D K Thompson and Shane Halbach
• Narrators: Tina Connolly and M K Hobson
• Audio production by Jeremy Carter
The Four Stewpots is forthcoming in And Welcome Back, D K Thompson’s first collection.
Her Path Lay Forward is a Cast of Wonders original!
• Discuss this story on our forum
• For a list of all our stories, authors and narrators, visit our Wikia page
• Come visit us on Facebook and Twitter

Listen above or download here.

Show Notes

Dave Thompson is a good name to know if you spend any time around Escape Artists. (So is “California King,” or “Easter Werewolf”…) He’s a pretty awesome guy, even if he disparages pumpkin beer. He lives outside Los Angeles with his wife and three terribly photogenic children. While he can tweet up to 175 characters, he refrains from using this power for chaos. Together with co-editor Anna Schwind, he ran PodCastle for five years before stepping down to focus on his own writing in 2015. This story is forthcoming in Dave’s first collection And Welcome Back, which he successfully Kickstarted last year. You can find two of his audio book narrations on Amazon: Norse Code by Greg Van Eekhout and Briarpatch by Tim Pratt. Follow him online or on Twitter.

Tina Connolly is the author of the Ironskin trilogy from Tor Books, and the Seriously Wicked series, from Tor Teen. Ironskin, her first fantasy novel, was a Nebula finalist. Her stories have appeared in Lightspeed, Tor.com, Strange Horizons, Beneath Ceaseless Skies, and many more. Her narrations have appeared in audiobooks and podcasts including Podcastle, Pseudopod, Beneath Ceaseless Skies, and her Parsec-winning flash fiction podcast Toasted Cake.

 

 

 


Shane Halbach lives in Chicago with his wife and three kids, where he writes software by day and avoids writing stories by night. His story Downsizing Pluto appeared in Cast of Wonders Episode 106, all the way back in December of 2013. Additionally, his fiction has appeared in Analog, EscapePod, The Year’s Best YA Speculative Fiction, and elsewhere. He blogs regularly, or can be found on Twitter.

 

 

 

M K Hobson has switched things up recently. While she continues to write, she has been dallying with a newfound love of photography. She’s also been traveling quite a bit, and as a matter of fact today’s story was recorded at Timberhouse in Ottowa, an urban castle and creative paradise. You can find her online and on Twitter.

 

 

 

 


The Little Wonders theme “Neversus” is by Alexye Nov, available at MusicAlley.com.

Read along with the text of the stories: The Four Stewpots and Her Path Lay Forward.

Episode 185: Marley and Cratchit by David Steffen


Narrated by Ian Stuart
Audio production by Jeremy Carter

Originally published at Escapepod (December 2012)


Listen above or download here.

Show Notes

Hello everyone, and welcome to our last episode of 2015. To round out the holidays and the year, we have one more steampunk winter tale for you. Make yourself a lovely beverage, curl up in front of the fire or under a cozy blanket, and enjoy the Dickensian prose of ‘Marley and Cratchit’ by David Steffen.

David SteffenDavid is a software engineer and writer living in Minnesota. He is the editor of Diabolical Plots, a zine on the topic of speculative fiction which publishes, among other things, original fiction as of this year and Best Of fiction podcast lists. Check out the 2014 list he created for us.

David is the administrator of the Submission Grinder, a web tool for writers to track their submissions and find markets for their work. His fiction has been published in Escapepod, Daily Science Fiction, and previously here on Cast of Wonders, among others.

David is also the editor of the Long List Anthology, a collection 21 stories collected from this year’s Hugo Awards lengthier nomination list. You don’t need to be familiar with the controversy surrounding this year’s awards to enjoy this excellent collection of tales from all corners of the world.

Ian StuartAnd what would a steampunk Christmas tale be without the Radio 4 stylings of Ian Stuart? Ian is a writer and performer from Northern England, and a regular and enthusiastic narrator for Pseudopod. He’s done voice-over work ranging from corporate videos to audio museum guides. You can find him at Voices, on Twitter or at his blog.

 

 

Thanks for listening, and from all of us we wish you the merriest of holidays and a happy new year!


Theme music is “Appeal to Heavens” by Alexye Nov, available at MusicAlley.com.

Read along with the text of the story.

Episode 184: Wine for Witches, Milk for Saints by Rachael K. Jones


Narrated by Kevin M. Hayes
Audio production by Jeremy Carter
Originally published in Intergalactic Medicine Show (November 2014)


Listen above or download here.

Show Notes

Rachael K. JonesWe ran Rachael K. Jones‘ full bio last week when she narrated Hat Trick by Beth Cato. So this week, let us tell you about some of her own work.

For example, we ran Rachael’s excellent Makeisha in Time as Episode 176. The story was originally published by the sadly soon-to-shutter Crossed Genres magazine, and then again on PodCastle narrated by the excellent K. Tempest Bradford.

But did you know Makeisha in Time was also one of the Top 100 podcast episodes featured on NPR’s new earbud.fm? Or made the John Joseph Adams Notable list for 2015?

This is Rachael’s second year of professional publication, so her final year of eligibility for the Campbell Award. Please consider her when you’re making your best-of posts this year.

Kevin M. Hayes Wine for Witches, Milk for Saints is narrated by Kevin M. Hayes. Kevin has been reading science fiction since he was old enough to read, and has been writing it for almost as long. He is active in the Pittsburgh SFF organization, Parsec and helps put on Confluence, a genre fiction conference every year. He has had stories published in Six from Parsec and Triangulation as well as TV Gods and most recently in The Realm Beyond. He has narrated other stories for Pseudopod and, amazingly, has also published a few limericks. He lives in Pittsburgh Pennsylvania with the love of his life, some of her children and all of her cats.

 


Theme music is “Appeal to Heavens” by Alexye Nov, available at MusicAlley.com.

Read along with the text of the story.


The next wave of semi-annual Escape Artists Flash Fiction Contest has been announced, and this time around it’s science fiction! Learn more in the EA forums.

Episode 150: Little Wonders 7 – The Season of Goodwill


Authors: Emmalia Harrington and Jamie Lackey
Narrators: Anne Fortune and Marguerite Kenner

Listen above or download here.

Show Notes

You’re listening to Little Wonders, our thematic flash fiction collections. This week we bring you our final episode for 2014, and lucky number 150 – a pair of stories for the inspired by the Season of Goodwill.


Our first offering is The Secret Ingredient Is by Emmalia Harrington. Emmalia is a writer and librarian who is making her first forays into publishing fiction. She adores fantasy, science fiction and other speculative works, as well as historical fiction and non-fiction. When she isn’t writing, she’s sewing, knitting, cooking or otherwise trying to keep her hands busy.

The story is served up for you by Anne-Louise Fortune, an actor and performer from Manchester. She also finds time to write scripts and the occasional audio drama, and yes, fanfic, as well as taking photographs at ‘geek events’ for Starburst Magazine. On Sundays Anne can be found being the eternally exasperated ‘Producer Al’ for The Bookworm podcast, a part of Fab Radio International. You can also find her on Twitter and follow her adventures as she conquers her fear of heights by learning aerial acrobatics!


Speaking of cozy, our second story is Jamie Lackey’s Christmas Lights. Jamie lives in Pittsburgh with her husband and cat. Her fiction has appeared in Daily Science Fiction, Beneath Ceaseless Skies, and the Stoker Award-winning After Death… She’s a member of the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America. Her short story collection, One Revolution, is available on Amazon. She’s currently editing the anthology Triangulation: Lost Voices, which is open for submissions through the end of February.

We’ll have links to her Facebook page, website and Twitter in the show notes.


Theme music is “Neversus” by Alexye Nov, available at MusicAlley.com.

Read Along

The Secret Ingredient Is: Click here to read the text of the story

Christmas Lights: Click here to read the text of the story

Episode 110: The Alchemist’s Children by Nathaniel Lee


Read by Danie Ware

Listen above or download here.

Show Notes

Today we present Nathaniel Lee’s story, The Alchemist’s Children. Nathaniel has been here several times before — welcome back!

Nathaniel Lee’s writing can be found in various places around the Internet, including Daily Science Fiction, Ideomancer, and Intergalactic Medicine Show. You can follow his writing blog at www.mirrorshards.org, where you can also find a complete bibliography with links. He currently lives in North Carolina with his wife, son, obligatory cat, and a roomful of board games.

He has a story coming out in Beneath Ceaseless Skies soon, as well as a return visit to Orson Scott Card’s Intergalactic Medicine Show and a break-in piece at Cemetery Dance.

Your narrator is Danie Ware. Danie grew up in Sussex, England. All very ordinary until, at 13 years old, she was one of the first girls at an all-boys’ boarding school. Surviving these interesting times, she went on to study old school English Lit at the University of East Anglia in Norwich, England. While at UEA, she met the local Dark Age re-enactment group and began over a decade of running around in old castles, armed with an interesting assortment of cutlery. Various jobs included shop manager, actuarial technical clerk, document designer and – erm – kiss-a-gram girl, as well as crewing at the local Theatre, training as a fitness instructor and joining the Territorial Army, Royal Anglian Regiment.

Moving to London in 2001, Danie landed at cult retailer Forbidden Planet (London) Limited, and took on everything from marketing strategy to running events to building the company’s social media profile. She also found herself with two new responsibilities – a mortgage and a child.

In 2008, after going to an SF Con for the first time in 15 years, Danie started writing again, and so the ‘Ecko’ series was reborn. It’s a genre she calls ‘Sardonic Fantasy’, a sharp and modern edge of cynicism to all that nice stuff with the heroes in. She’s been told she swears far too much and writes a mean combat scene.

Danie lives in South London with her son and two cats.

You can find Danie on twitter under the moniker @Danacea, or on the web at Danieware.com

The first two books of the Ecko series, Ecko Rising and Ecko Burning, are available from Amazon, Forbidden Planet or any other good book retailer. The last book of the trilogy, Ecko Endgame, is due out from Titan Books in 2014.

Theme music is “Appeal To Heavens” by Alexye Nov, available at MusicAlley.com.

Read along

Click here to read the text of the story

Episode 109: Nuclear Family by Alex Shvartsman


Read by Big Anklevich

Listen above or download here.

Show Notes

Today we present Alex Shvartsman’s story, Nuclear Family. Alex has been here several times before — welcome back Alex! Thanks for gracing us with an inventive seasonal story.

Alex Shvartsman is a writer, editor, and game designer from Brooklyn, NY. Over 50 of his short stories appeared in such venues as Intergalactic Medicine Show, Nature, Daily Science Fiction and Galaxy’s Edge. He is the editor of Unidentified Funny Objects anthology series of humorous science fiction and fantasy.

You can find him online at www.alexshvartsman.com or on Twitter as @AShvartsman.

His latest anthology, Coffee: 14 Caffeinated Tales of the Fantastic was released earlier this month. Check it out at www.ufopub.com

Your narrator is Big Anklevich. Big is co-host of the Dunesteef Audio Fiction Magazine. The show features genre stories brought to you as brilliant fullcast audio productions created by some of the most talented producers in the podisphere. After each story, Big and his co-host Rish treat you to scintillating, thought provoking, and often mind-numbing conversation…oh, sorry, I meant mind-opening…opening?…mind-expanding maybe…conversation related to the day’s story and other geek-centric topics. Check it out at dunesteef.com. You probably won’t regret it…I mean, it’s pretty unlikely that you will…we’re not guaranteeing a lack of regret, just saying that studies have shown a very low amount of regret resulting from checking out dunesteef.com. What’s the downside, right? I mean, let’s say you don’t appreciate it…well, then you just move on. But if you do like it, then, well you liked it so, you’re good. So, check it out. Thanks.

Theme music is “Appeal To Heavens” by Alexye Nov, available at MusicAlley.com.

Read along

Click here to read the text of the story

Episode 108: The Cardinals of Ever June by Sylvia Anna Hivén


Read by Pete Milan

Listen above or download here.

Show Notes

Today we present Sylvia Anna Hivén’s story, The Cardinals of Ever June. Syliva’s excellent story Custom Made appeared in Episode 101 of Cast of Wonders. Do go and check it out if you haven’t already heard it. Sylvia Anna Hivén lives and writes in Atlanta, Georgia. Her fiction has appeared in Daily Science Fiction, Stupefying Stories, EscapePod, PseudoPod, and others. Follow her at twitter @brynnfarusiel.

Your narrator is Pete Milan. Pete is a voice actor, writer, narrator, audio drama producer and cosmopolitan jackadandy. He has appeared in all of Pendant Productions’ original audio dramas, and has been a writer on their show The Kingery since Season 2. In addition, he has appeared in audio dramas from The Colonial Radio Theater On The Air, Gypsy Audio, Darker Projects, and Cape Cod Radio Mystery Theater. Pete is also an audiobook narrator and can be heard reading Hugh Monn, Private Detective by Lee Houston, Jr., from Dynamic Ram Audio, with more titles to come.

Theme music is “Appeal To Heavens” by Alexye Nov, available at MusicAlley.com.

Read along

Click here to read the text of the story

Discuss

Episode 107: The Surfacing by Kurt Newton


Read by Dani Daly

Listen above or download here.

Show Notes

Today we present Kurt Newton’s story, The Surfacing. Kurt is a horror and dark fantasy writer. This story is not only his first appearance with Cast of Wonders, after nearly two hundred short stories published over the past twenty years, it is his first published young adult short story! The first of many, we hope, Kurt.

His supernatural horror novel, The Wishnik, was published in trade paperback in October of this year by Gallows Press.

Your narrator today is Dani Daly, and today is… well, the eve of a big birthday for her. Happy Birthday Dani and welcome back — good to have you read for us again.

Dani lives on Long Island with her husband and two 1/2 cats. She occasionally blogs at danireads.com. You can find audiobooks read by Dani at audible.com, itunes or amazon.com; search for Danielle Daly.

Theme music is “Appeal To Heavens” by Alexye Nov, available at MusicAlley.com.

Read along

Click here to read the text of the story

Discuss