Tonight we discuss, as we do all too often, the beginning of the awards season, as well as the sometimes problematical Hugo category of Best Related Work, the question of authors who are so prolific that new readers may feel intimidated, and some of the parameters of who and who should not be covered in the Modern Masters of Science Fiction series of books, of which Gary has recently assumed editorship.
Jan 30th, 2016 by jonathanstrahan
Welcome to the first episode of The Coode Street Roundtable. The Roundtable is a new monthly podcast from Coode Street Productions where panelists James Bradley, Ian Mond, and Jonathan Strahan, joined by occasional special guests, discuss a new or recently released science fiction or fantasy novel.
Adam Roberts' The Thing Itself
“Adam Roberts turns his attention to answering the Fermi Paradox with a taut and claustrophobic tale that echoes John Carpenters' The Thing.Two men while away the days in an Antarctic research station. Tensions between them build as they argue over a love-letter one of them has received. One is practical and open. The other surly, superior and obsessed with reading one book - by the philosopher Kant.As a storm brews and they lose contact with the outside world they debate Kant, reality and the emptiness of the universe. The come to hate each other, and they learn that they are not alone.”
Jan 24th, 2016 by jonathanstrahan
For our first podcast recorded in 2016, beginning our sixth year, we discuss the remarkable career of David G. Hartwell, the role of editors in shaping science fiction, the forthcoming Hugo Awards nominations and MidAmericon, the World Fantasy Convention, and the significance of science fiction of the the 1980s—both as it appeared then and as it appears to us now.
Continuing the series of podcasts we recorded in Saratoga Springs at the World Fantasy Convention, we sat down with distinguished fantasy writers Glen Cook and Steven Erikson, discussing the genesis of Cook's influential Black Company and Dread Empire series and other novels, and Erikson's hugely popular Malazan Book of the Fallen. In addition to their approaches to character and world-building, they offer insights into how Steve's background in archaeology influenced his work, and what it was like for Glen to live with Fritz Leiber many years ago.
Listenership for the Coode Street Podcast (www.coodestreetpodcast.com) grew for the fifth consecutive year in 2015, with a total of 48 full-length episodes and three mini-episodes produced, up from 42 full-length episodes in 2013 and 2014. The audience for the podcast increased by 52.1% over 2014, with a total of 133,501 downloads (episode plays) during the year. The average number of listeners for individual episodes increased by 33.1%, from 2,081 in 2014 to 2,781 in 2015. Interest in the podcast also increased, with feed hits growing by 44% to 1,148,322 across the year.
Guests appearing on the podcast during 2015 included Adam Roberts, Aliette de Bodard, Alisa Krasnostein, Bill Schafer, Cecelia Holland, Charlie Jane Anders, Cheryl Morgan, Chris Brown, Deborah Biancotti, Eileen Gunn, Elizabeth Hand, Gene Wolfe, Guy Gavriel Kay, Harlan Ellison, Ian McDonald, Ian Mond, James Bradley, James Morrow, Jim Minz, Joe Abercrombie, Joe Monti, John Clute, John Scalzi, Karin Tidbeck, Kelly Link, Ken Liu, Kim Stanley Robinson, KJ Parker, Kristine Kathryn Rusch, Linda Nagata, Liza Trombi, Margo Lanagan, Michael Swanwick, Nina Allan, Nisi Shawl, Pamela Sargent, Paolo Bacigalupi, Paul Kincaid, Samuel R Delany, Scott Westerfeld, Sean Williams, Sean Wright, Silvia Moreno-Garcia, Suzy McKee Charnas, Tehani Wessely, William Gibson, and Zen Cho.
Highlights for the year included:
- Tor.com: We trialled syndicating the podcast with Tor.com. Episodes were published on the Sunday of each week on Coode Street, and then republished on Tor.com on Tuesdays. The trial ran from February to November, concluding with Episode 256. Listenership for the podcast via Tor.com is not included in the statistics in this summary. We would like to thank Tor.com and Irene Gallo for partnering with us during the year.
- K.J. Parker: We presented the first interview with World Fantasy Award winning writer K.J. Parker, revealing Parker as a pseudonym for British writer Tom Holt. The episode was published April 21, 2015.
- Women in science fiction: We spoke to Pamela Sargent, Suzy McKee Charnas, Kristine Kathryn Rusch, Charlie Jane Anders, Chelsea Quinn Yarbro, Eleanor Arnason, and Linda Nagata as part of an ongoing series looking at the careers of women working in science fiction.
The most popular episodes of the year were:
- Episode 245: Ian McDonald and Luna (3,333)
- Episode 246: Aliette de Bodard and The House of Shattered Wings (2,756)
- Episode 230: K J Parker and the history of a writer (2,672)
- Episode 253: SF Lectures, The Martian and more (2,637)
- Episode 238: Kim Stanley Robinson and Aurora (2,634)
- Episode 242: Time runs out for the Hugos and more (2,619)
- Episode 207: Kameron Hurley (2,508)
- Episode 236: On books to look for... (with Liza Trombi) (2,398)
- Episode 250: Forthcoming books with Liza Trombi (2,388)
- Episode 231: Ian Mond, James Bradley and the 2015 Hugo Novel Shortlist (2,298)
The Coode Street Podcast is produced by Jonathan Strahan and Gary K. Wolfe and published by The Coode Street Press. The podcast will resume in January 2016.
Jan 1st, 2016 by jonathanstrahan
One of the highlights of the 2015 World Fantasy Convention in November was when Gary and Jonathan got to sit down with Guest of Honor Chelsea Quinn Yarbro and io9 editor-in-chief Charlie Jane Anders to discuss their respective careers, their experiences working in science fiction and fantasy as women, and much more.
Dec 26th, 2015 by jonathanstrahan
A Borrowed Man: a new science fiction novel, from Gene Wolfe, the celebrated author of the Book of the New Sun series.It is perhaps a hundred years in the future, our civilization is gone, and another is in place in North America, but it retains many familiar things and structures. Although the population is now small, there is advanced technology, there are robots, and there are clones.E. A. Smithe is a borrowed person. He is a clone who lives on a third-tier shelf in a public library, and his personality is an uploaded recording of a deceased mystery writer. Smithe is a piece of property, not a legal human.A wealthy patron, Colette Coldbrook, takes him from the library because he is the surviving personality of the author of Murder on Mars. A physical copy of that book was in the possession of her murdered father, and it contains an important secret, the key to immense family wealth. It is lost, and Colette is afraid of the police. She borrows Smithe to help her find the book and to find out what the secret is. And then the plot gets complicated.
Dec 22nd, 2015 by jonathanstrahan
Welcome to the final episode of the Coode Street Podcast to be recorded for 2015. This week Gary and Jonathan are joined by award-winning writers and critics Charlie Jane Anders and Nisi Shawl in the Gershwin Room to discuss more of the best science fiction and fantasy books of the year. As with last week, you'll need to listen to the episode to hear what’s recommended, but there are a good handful of familiar books and few surprises that you may want to hunt down before the year is done.
We would like to thank each and every one of you for taking the time to listen to the podcast, for the feedback you've sent in throughout the year, and for your support of Coode Street. We'd also like to thank Charlie Jane and Nisi for making the time to appear on the podcast this week. There will be some new episodes coming up that were recorded back in November, which we hope you enjoy too, but we’re on holidays for a while, relaxing and enjoying the season. We wish all of you the happiest of holidays. See you in 2016 for another year of the Coode Street Podcast!
Dec 12th, 2015 by jonathanstrahan
The year is fast running out, but with the holiday season approaching Gary and Jonathan invited award-winning writers and critics Paul Kincaid and Adam Roberts to join them in the Gershwin Room to discuss a small sampling of the best science fiction and fantasy books of the year. They also discussed some of the most interesting and important trends in science fiction during 2015.
With the year coming all too quickly to a close, this week we are joined by distinguished veteran editor Jim Minz, who discusses his career from his University of Wisconsin days to working for Tor Books in Wisconsin and New York, Ballantine Del Rey, and currently Baen Books in North Carolina. We touch upon the various market segments of different subgenres of SF and fantasy, the various ways in which Baen and its market may have been misunderstood, the role of women editors in SF, and various other matters related to the SF publishing industry over the past two or three decades.
This year isn't over yet, but we can just see the end of it over the horizon. Back in Chicago and Perth after their visit to Saratoga Springs, Gary and Jonathan sit down to deliver a classic rambling discussion of science fiction, fantasy and other stuff. They discuss the World Fantasy Awards, lifetime achievement and much more.
Nov 11th, 2015 by jonathanstrahan
And we're back with a new episode! This week, from the World Fantasy Convention in Saratoga Springs, we are joined by the genuinely iconic Pamela Sargent, author of many novels including The Shore of Women and editor of the legendary Women of Wonder anthology series, and Suzy McKee Charnas, author of the classic feminist SF series The Holdfast Chronicles and the equally classic The Vampire Tapestry, for a lively discussion of the changing role of women in SF since the 1970s and digress as usual into some fascinating byways and memories.
Oct 24th, 2015 by jonathanstrahan
Oct 18th, 2015 by jonathanstrahan
This week Gary and Jonathan are back in the Gershwin Room, killing time and talking about Jonathan's new anthology Meeting Infinity, which we discuss in some detail. It leads on to a conversation about our perceptions of 'the alien' and 'the other' in science fiction (and how that has changed over time), and quite a lot more in what is a classic Coode Street ramble.
This week we are joined by multiple award winning writer and editor Kristine Kathryn Rusch who discusses her long and diverse career in science fiction, as a writer, as editor at Pulphouse then at F&SF, and her more recent experiences as a writer working in both mainstream and independent publishing. We also discuss her 'Retrieval Artist' saga, including the eight novel 'Anniversary Day' series.
The glory days of 2003 when I was going to review every short story that I read and publish it at The Coode Street Review of Science Fiction. Sanity prevailed, but reviews did appear. During 2003 I reviewed Howard Waldrop's "A Better World's in Birth", Ellen Klages' "Basement Magic", and Lucius Shepard's "Liar's House".