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.

As  always, we hope you enjoy the episode.
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Welcome to the first episode of The Coode Street Roundtable. The Roundtable is a new monthly podcast from Coode Street Productions where panelists James BradleyIan 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

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This month James, Ian, and Jonathan discuss The Thing Itself, the latest novel from British Science Fiction and John Campbell Memorial Award winning author Adam Roberts.  The Thing Itself is a powerful and engaging novel described by its publisher as follows: 
“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.” 
The Thing Itself has been reviewed by Locus Online and Tor.com. You can order copies of the book from:
We encourage all of our listeners to leave comments here and we will do our best to respond as soon as possible.

Next month

The Coode Street Roundtable will return at the end of February with a discussion of Charlie Jane Anders's second novel, All the Birds in the Sky
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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.

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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.


Our thanks to Glen and Steve for making time in their busy schedules as guests of honour at WFC2015 to sit down and talk to us for the podcast. As always, we hope you enjoy the episode. 
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Two of the powerhouse writers of their generation, bestselling fantasy novelist Scott Lynch and award-winning science fiction and fantasy author Elizabeth Bear, sat down with us in a noisy hotel room in Saratoga Springs, New York to discuss their mutual love affair with the genre, their shared awareness of the history of the field and how it influences their work, and much more.
We would, of course, like to thank Scott and Elizabeth for making the time to sit down with us during what was a busy World Fantasy Convention weekend. Coode Street remains on hiatus. Next week a final podcast from Saratoga, where we talk with convention guests of honor Glen Cook and Steven Erikson.
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Audience

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

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

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:

  1. Episode 245: Ian McDonald and Luna (3,333)
  2. Episode 246: Aliette de Bodard and The House of Shattered Wings (2,756)
  3. Episode 230: K J Parker and the history of a writer (2,672)
  4. Episode 253: SF Lectures, The Martian and more (2,637)
  5. Episode 238: Kim Stanley Robinson and Aurora (2,634)
  6. Episode 242: Time runs out for the Hugos and more (2,619)
  7. Episode 207: Kameron Hurley (2,508)
  8. Episode 236: On books to look for... (with Liza Trombi) (2,398)
  9. Episode 250: Forthcoming books with Liza Trombi (2,388)
  10. 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.

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.

This episode was recorded live on 6 November 2015 in from an enthusiastic audience and was recorded by Paul and the WFC team, and made possible by Peter Halasz. Our sincere thanks to Quinn, Charlie Jane, and everyone at WFC. As always, we hope you enjoy the episode!
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Welcome to the first of Coode Street’s seasonal hiatus episodes. This November Gary and Jonathan were in Saratoga Springs for the World Fantasy Convention. Over the weekend they recorded several conversations that will come out over the coming weeks.

In this first podcast, they sit down with living legend Gene Wolfe to discuss his latest novel, A Borrowed Man. The publisher describes the book like this:

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.

We were extremely fortunate to be joined by Hugo Award winning critic John Clute for the conversation with Gene.  We’d like to thank John and Gene for making the time to appear on the podcast during what was a very busy weekend. We’d also like to apologise for some background noise in the recording, which we’ve attempted to remove.

As always, we hope you enjoy the podcast. More next week!
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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!

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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.

What books are recommended? Well, you'll need to listen to the episode to get the full list, but there are a good handful of familiar books and few surprises that you may want to hunt down before the year is done.
As Jonathan says towards the end of the episode, whether this is the final Coode Street recorded for 2015 (we do have several others recorded for you and there may be a special second best of the year episode) or not, 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 everyone who has made time to appear on the podcast during 2015. It's been a heck of a year.
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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.


As always, we'd like to thank Jim for making the time to talk to us, and hope you enjoy the episode! 
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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. 

As always, we hope you enjoy the episode!
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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.

As always, we hope you enjoy the podcast! 
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Where am I at World Fantasy Convention 2015? In addition to all sorts of private plans and to recording five podcasts for later Coode St consumption, I will be in public two times. We’re recording a live podcast and I’m moderating a panel on the fantasy canon with a group of people with so much experience, talent and sheer brain power that I can probably show up and play Angry Birds while they entertain you all. 

As to the rest of the convention, I’m in Saratoga from about noon on Wednesday through to Monday lunch time, so I’ll be about. I don’t usually go to the mass signing on Friday, but may see you there. Otherwise, if you’re hoping to catch me or Coode St, we’ll probably be in the bar…


Friday 6 November 10:00AM
Coode Street Podcast Live with Chelsea Quinn Yarbro & Charlie Jane Anders!!

Gary Wolfe and I will be recording a live episode of the Coode St Podcast (our third), this time with the wonderful and incredible Chelsea Quinn Yarbro and Charlie Jane Anders. We intend to talk fantasy, careers, and what it is to be a woman making a career in our genre. This episode will be broadcast in November as part of our ‘women in science fiction’ series of podcasts.



Saturday 7 November 2:00PM
Creating the Fantasy Canon 

There are some books we all agree on as fundamental to the genre, but can we agree on a canon of twenty stories? Our panelists will discuss which twenty books are essential reading for understanding the genre and how this list has changed over time. 
Jonathan Strahan (mod.), John Clute, Michael Dirda, Yanni Kuznia, Gary Wolfe, Ron Yaniv
This week, in our continuing series of discussions about the experiences of women writers in the science fiction field, we are fortunate to be joined by Eleanor Arnason and Linda Nagata.  

Linda, whose Going Dark appears next week from Saga Press is the third volume in her trilogy that began with the Nebula-nominated The Red, began publishing novels twenty years ago with the nanotech series that started with The Bohr Maker, still available from Mythic Island Press.  

Eleanor, winner of the James Tiptree, Jr. award for her classic novel A Woman of the Iron People, is currently completing a collection of her popular Hwarhath stories and has most recently published a collection of her Icelandic fantasies, Hidden Folk

We touch upon the problems and opportunities presented by self-publishing, working with small presses, and whether women SF writers might more readily disappear from the collective memory of SF readers. 

As always, we hope you enjoy the episode.


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7a.jpgThis 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.


As always, we hope you enjoy the episode. More next week!
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This week Gary returns from the wilds of Virginia or Washington DC or somewhere or other on the US Eastern seaboard. We discuss his experience writing and performing a series of lectures on science fiction; the strengths and weaknesses of Ridley Scott’s The Martian; compiling Gary’s Library of America volumes, and whether or not we kid ourselves on whether a work really is canonical. 

All of that and a little bit more. As always, we hope you enjoy the episode. We should be back next week with a new episode, as we begin our run down to World Fantasy and the end of the year.
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This week we welcome distinguished historical novelist Cecelia Holland back to the podcast to discuss her new fantasy novel Dragon Heart, her classic SF novel Floating Worlds, the relationships between SF, fantasy, and historical fiction, and historical and political themes in the work of writers like Kim Stanley Robinson and George R.R. Martin.

As always, our thanks to Cecelia for making time to be on the podcast. We hope you enjoy the episode.
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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.

We spend most time, though, discussing Kris's work editing a new anthology of science fiction by women, Women of Futures Past, which will be published by Baen Books in 2016, and her new Women in Science Fiction website.
As always, we'd like to thank Kris for making the time to talk to us, and hope you enjoy the episode!
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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".

During the podcast I recommend the following books:
More anon!
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