Posts Tagged ‘Marguerite Kenner’

Genres:

Cast of Wonders 233: Saurs (Staff Pick 2016)

Show Notes

Every year in January, Cast of Wonders takes the month off to recharge, plan the year ahead and highlight some of our favourite episodes. A different member of the Cast of Wonders crew will present their favorite story of 2016 each week in January.

We hope you enjoy editor and host Marguerite Kenner’s favorite story from 2016, Saurs by Craig Delancey. The story originally aired March 13, 2016 as part of our Dinovember special, Cast of Wonders 218.


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


Saurs

by Craig DeLancey

The fossil mages gathered in the shadow of the gully. Four of them: three old men and a young woman. Old Jim lifted and replaced his wreck of a straw hat and then spat at a scorpion. John Bloodeye and Harry watched the dark spot in the sand evaporate in the heat, until finally, as they’d all been hoping, the young one spoke.

“I found it near here,” Karyn Thomson said. She put her hand into her pocket, fingering the bone there, but not drawing it out yet.

The three old men waited. This was hard for them. They’d all been famous, in their day. They had their pride still.

Finally Karyn tugged the bone out. A hooked talon, as long as her own hand. The old men leaned forward, careful not to show excitement but unable to keep their eyes from popping.

“T rex,” Bloodeye said. “Manus claw. Left interior.”

Karyn nodded agreement.

“It looks big,” Old Jim said. “It looks as big as the claw on that old girl your Pa found out here.”

“Bigger,” Karyn said. “Two centimeters longer.” She pushed her hat back with the point of the claw. Blond hair spilled out over her eyes.

Harry reached toward the claw. Karyn flinched, but did not draw back. He touched the fossil with two dry fingers. “Lot of hum to it,” he whispered. The other men did not comment. They knew there’d be magic in the bone. No need to taunt yourself, like hungry men poking another man’s fat goose.

(Continue Reading…)

Genres:

Cast of Wonders 218: Saurs (Dinovember!)

Show Notes

Special thanks to Emma Thompson for the use of her photograph in this week’s episode art, featuring her three adorable dinosaur lovers.

And if you’ve a hankerin’ for a weird western that lets you fight an undead T-Rex, check out Deadlands! And tell Shane, Clint and Jodi I sent you.


Saurs

by Craig DeLancey

The fossil mages gathered in the shadow of the gully.  Four of them: three old men and a young woman. Old Jim lifted and replaced his wreck of a straw hat and then spat at a scorpion.  John Bloodeye and Harry watched the dark spot in the sand evaporate in the heat, until finally, as they’d all been hoping, the young one spoke.

“I found it near here,” Karyn Thomson said.   She put her hand into her pocket, fingering the bone there, but not drawing it out yet.

The three old men waited. This was hard for them. They’d all been famous, in their day.  They had their pride still.

Finally Karyn tugged the bone out.  A hooked talon, as long as her own hand.  The old men leaned forward, careful not to show excitement but unable to keep their eyes from popping.

“T rex,” Bloodeye said.  “Manus claw. Left interior.”

Karyn nodded agreement.

“It looks big,” Old Jim said.  “It looks as big as the claw on that old girl your Pa found out here.”

“Bigger,” Karyn said.  “Two centimeters longer.”  She pushed her hat back with the point of the claw.  Blond hair spilled out over her eyes.

Harry reached toward the claw.  Karyn flinched, but did not draw back.  He touched the fossil with two dry fingers.  “Lot of hum to it,” he whispered. The other men did not comment.  They knew there’d be magic in the bone. No need to taunt yourself, like hungry men poking another man’s fat goose.

(Continue Reading…)

Where to find Cast of Wonders at WorldCon


Hello everyone!

Cast of Wonders’ editor and host, Marguerite Kenner, will be at WorldCon in Kansas City, Missouri this week. You can find her on the following panels as well as roaming the halls. Come say hello, and get a Cast of Wonders badge ribbon!

Creative Commons Rights for Creators and Fans

Wonder Tales – Not Just Fairies


Hi everyone, your editor Marguerite here.

This weekend has been the International Conference on the Fantastic in the Arts. I’ve been following along as various members of my Twitter stream were in attendance.

One of the presentations that caught my attention was the history of the term ‘Fairy Tale’ and its use as an umbrella term for wonder and the supernatural in fiction. Neither concept is unique to Western Europe and the speaker, Cristina Bacchilega, posits that a shift away from using the label generically might help linguistically decolonize non-European based narratives.

I support this idea wholeheartedly: a small linguistic shift in support of greater diversity. In an effort to put Cristina’s theory to the test I’ve revised our submission guidelines to explain our use of this distinction. The relevant section is set out below.

Special thanks to Julia Rios for her livetweeting of Bacchilega’s presentation, and Julia for answering my follow-up questions.


Fairy Tales? Wondertales? Huh?

We use the word “wondertales” as the generic description of speculative fiction stories based on classic and/or historical cultural narratives. Synomyms include fairy tales, folklore and mythology – all academic terms with their own meanings, origins, distinctions and historical connotations.

This is to help distinguish wondertales as a whole from the subset of stories based on Western European ancestry, which we assign the label “fairy tales”. Good examples include Hans Christian Andersen stories, or older Disney movies.

Fairy tales are popular as a genre of young adult fiction to the point where they cross the line into tropes. We receive a lot of them. Unless a story succinctly retells one of these narratives in a new and unique way, we generally decline. A good example of one we liked was “Piper” by Ian Rose – a flash piece retelling ‘The Pied Piper’ from one of the rat’s point of view.

Wondertales, on the the other hand, are under-represented in short fiction and we’d love to receive more of them. For an example of one we liked check out “The Dun Horse” by Edward Ahern – the retelling of a Pawnee legend.

Genres: ,

Cast of Wonders 197: The Authorized Biography (Part 1)

Show Notes

Galen Dara’s amazing print for Artemis Rising is available on Society6.


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


The Authorized Biography

by Michael G. Ryan

In the beginning, Tim Toonby was bewildered to find his biography. Bewildered and ultimately alarmed.

It appeared Saturday morning on his front porch in an unadorned metal box, the fireproof kind meant for legal documents. No key. Tim Toonby had just stepped outside to leave the full diaper pail liner for the service, and in the age of letter bombs, he hesitated when he saw the box on the steps. He looked around as if the deliverer would still be nearby, waiting for the detonation, but the neighborhood was typically quiet—prefabricated homes with lawns of sod, flower boxes along porch railings, stone lions at the end of driveways as affectations of the neighbors’ aspirations. Toonby had them, too. It was a street for dreamers, not killers.

When he picked up the box, the lid wasn’t latched—it fell open, and he was suddenly looking down at his own face on the cover of a book inside. His own face, thirty years older, hair gone to gray, the crow’s feet at his eyes deep and sad. The black-and-white photo looked posed in a cheap hotel room where the nightstand’s drawer was pulled open enough to reveal a book, a Gideon’s Bible. But when Tim Toonby squinted at the picture, he could see that wasn’t right. He could just make out the text on the cover: Barnabas’s Bible by Timothy Toonby.

This was the book he had started writing six months ago. His first book, his hope for the great American novel, his dream of fame and fortune. The one his agent said would make him a household name.

(Continue Reading…)

Genres: ,

Cast of Wonders 192: There Are No Marshmallows in Camelot (Staff Pick 2015)

Show Notes

Every year in January, Cast of Wonders takes the month off to recharge our batteries, plan the year ahead, and highlight some of our favourite episodes. As part of joining the Escape Artists family, this year we’re pulling out all the stops. We’re running 10 staff pick episodes over the month, each one hosted by a different member of the Cast of Wonders crew.

We hope you enjoy slush reader Alexis’ Goble’s favorite story from 2015, There Are No Marshmallows in Camelot by Christian McKay Heidicker and narrated by Marguerite Kenner. The story originally aired March 15, 2015 as Cast of Wonders 159.


There Are No Marshmallows in Camelot

by Christian McKay Heidicker

Leticia Andrews saw the wizard hat on a Monday morning at 7:06 a.m. She was eating Lucky Charms in the kitchen nook. The hat was gray and tattered and sat in the window of her plastic princess house, which was in the backyard.

MOM!” she screamed down the hallway. “DO I HAVE A WIZARD HAT?”

“Don’t think so! Unless Uncle Lewis . . .”

“DOES JAKEY?”

“Honey, I don’t know! I’m working?”

Jake, Teece’s baby brother, did not have a wizard hat. She was 96.2% sure. At least not one so pointy and floppy and not covered in glitter like the ones from Toys ‘R’ Us. Even though Teece had never seen one before, she knew the hat that currently sat in her princess house was a real wizard hat. And that meant things.

(Continue Reading…)

A Huge Announcement: Cast of Wonders is joining Escape Artists!


Hello everyone, Marguerite here!

Two years ago, Graeme and I had an idea. I was taking over as editor and host, and along with Barry we were trying to come up with ways of expanding our audience as well as the formats and types of episodes we could produce.

Some of those changes you’ve already seen, like the introduction of the Little Wonders flash episodes and our Camp Myth serial. Others haven’t been as visible – bringing aboard additional audio producers and slush readers. We stepped up our convention presence in 2015, with appearances at Nine Worlds in London, WorldCon in Spokane, and we’ll be at FantasyCon later this month in Nottingham.

All leading up to what today I am thrilled and humbled to announce. Cast of Wonders is about to take one giant step out into the larger genre fiction world, arm in arm with some of the best respected podcasters in the business. In 2016, Cast of Wonders will be joining the Escape Artists family of podcasts, home to Podcastle, Escapepod, and Pseudopod. Did you know that the three shows combined currently have a listenership of over a quarter of a million downloads a month? Combine that with the newly launched Mothership Zeta digital magazine, and EA is one of the largest genre fiction markets out there. There’s no place better suited for Cast of Wonders’ unique and wonderful young adult stories.

You can listen to EA’s owner, Alasdair Stuart, and myself talk about the announcement in Part 1 of their annual metacast. (Listen to Part 2 and Part 3 as well – free stories!)

This also means that, as far as I know, Cast of Wonders is about to become the first PRO RATE paying young adult short fiction audio market. That’s right everyone, once the transition is complete, Cast of Wonders will be offering SFWA pro rate payments on all new fiction. Plus stepping up our reprint rates. We’ll have new contracts as well, which we’ll post an example of for our authors to review as part of the migration.

We don’t have exact dates available to share just yet. To prepare for the change-over we’ve closed to submissions, and we’ll announce when we’ll be re-opening as soon as possible; I’m thinking December is likely right now. There are lots of details still to iron out, and I’d like to prepare a list of great example stories for the EA audience to get to know what we’re about here at Cast of Wonders. If you have some favorites you think should be included, let us know.

Thanks everyone. From all of us, we hope you’re as excited as we to finally be able to take Cast of Wonders to a new professional level of audio fiction and entertainment. We’ll keep you posted as the details are confirmed. And as always – thanks for listening!

2015 Parsec Finalists!


The 2015 Parsec finalists have been announced, and Cast of Wonders has again made a fine showing!

Best Speculative Fiction Magazine or Anthology Podcast

Cast of Wonders edited by Marguerite Kenner
Pseudopod edited by Shawn M. Garrett
Seminar: An Original Anthology Show edited by Pendant Productions
The Uncanny Magazine Podcast edited by Lynne M. Thomas and Michael Damian Thomas
The NoSleep Podcast edited by David Cummings

Note: Due to errors by the Parsec Committee, “Shimmer” by Amanda Ca. Davis is no longer a finalist in the Small Cast (Short Form) category.

Congratulations to all the finalists! It’s an amazing list this year, with lots of friends and colleagues from the podcasting community represented.

The winners will be announced September 5 at DragonCon.

Genres:

Cast of Wonders 173: Timelines

Show Notes

This story marks our fifth appearance of Cy De Gerch. You can find all her previous adventures here.


Timelines

by Rick Kennett

As Utopia Plain accelerated away, Captain Brown switched from aft view to forward where the star field was beginning to blue-shift. On the weapons repeater beside him the Terran ship was sliding into the sights. The repeater’s identification lights were on, blinking insistently.

At fire control Lieutenant Cy De Gerch stared at her weapons screen and said, “Range to targets now four point five million and closing.”

Across from her, Lieutenant Peters flipped back the plastic cover on the I.F.F. override and jabbed his finger down on the sensor panel. It lit with the words Genetic Code confirmed.

“Identification Friend or Foe override operating, sir,” he said.

“Range four million and closing,” said Cy.

(Continue Reading…)

Genres: ,

Cast of Wonders 159: There Are No Marshmallows in Camelot

Show Notes

Learn more about the new LGBTQ podcast Glittership!


There Are No Marshmallows in Camelot

by Christian McKay Heidicker

Leticia Andrews saw the wizard hat on a Monday morning at 7:06 a.m. She was eating Lucky Charms in the kitchen nook. The hat was gray and tattered and sat in the window of her plastic princess house, which was in the backyard.

MOM!” she screamed down the hallway. “DO I HAVE A WIZARD HAT?”

“Don’t think so! Unless Uncle Lewis . . .”

“DOES JAKEY?”

“Honey, I don’t know! I’m working?”

Jake, Teece’s baby brother, did not have a wizard hat. She was 96.2% sure. At least not one so pointy and floppy and not covered in glitter like the ones from Toys ‘R’ Us. Even though Teece had never seen one before, she knew the hat that currently sat in her princess house was a real wizard hat. And that meant things.

(Continue Reading…)

Genres: , ,

Cast of Wonders 151: Master Madrigal’s Mechanical Man (Staff Pick 2014)

Show Notes

Every year in January Cast of Wonders takes a break to catch our breath, plan out the year ahead, and highlight some of our favourite episodes from the year just passed.

We hope you enjoy Marguerite’s favorite story from 2014, Master Madrigal’s Mechanical Man by Scott C. Mikula, which originally aired March 23, 2014 as Cast of Wonders 120.


Master Madrigal’s Mechanical Man

by Scott C. Mikula

I tried to shut out the crowd’s roar, but the thunder of a thousand feet pounding above us in the arena stands rose until I could feel the breastplate of the mechanical swordsman vibrate beneath my touch.  Master Madrigal gestured with his palsied hand for me to replace the automaton’s helmet, but I hesitated to examine the delicate inner workings. Just one small adjustment

A cuff to the back of my head arrested my motion.  “We have spoken of this, Cetta,” said Madrigal. “There is no problem with the balance.”  He crossed his arms, tucking his useless right hand out of sight beneath his sleeve.

I persuaded my mother to send me to her uncle Madrigal after his illness, when I was just twelve years old.  The word apprentice was never used. Girls did not apprentice to craftsmen like Madrigal, and I don’t think he would have taken an apprentice in any case.  He referred to me as his hands. My deft fingers did the work his no longer could.
(Continue Reading…)