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Chronscast

chronscast

Welcome to Chronscast! We are the official podcast of SFF Chronicles, the world's largest science-fiction and fantasy community. Each episode your hosts Dan Jones and Christopher Bean will take a deep dive into some classic science-fiction, fantasy, and horror books with a special guest. We'll also discuss the challenges of writing and publishing SFF, and our guests' experiences. Episodes will feature specialist advice on writing and publishing, feature the winners of the monthly writing challenges on SFF Chronicles, as well as comedy skits.

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S1 E6 - House Of Leaves with Ed Wilson
Jun 6 2022
S1 E6 - House Of Leaves with Ed Wilson
This episode we finally open that door of the Chronscast household we'd not dared to open before and plunge into the abyssal labyrinth that is Mark Danielewski's maddeningly epic debut novel, House Of Leaves. A book that defies conventional categorisation, it's been described as a horror, a literary piece, a puzzle, and even a love story. We're joined on this subterranean literary odyssey by renowned literary agent Ed Wilson. Ed is the director of the Johnson & Alcock literary agency, representing a vibrant and developing list of fiction and non-fiction, from new and debut writers to established, bestselling and award-winning authors. With Ed we gleefully dip down the House Of Leaves rabbithole, discussing ergodic literature, innovation in writing, the perils of overanalysing texts, and the Manic Street Preachers. We also chat about the submissions process and navigating the slush pile, and the options open to authors and agents. Elsewhere, The Judge gives a sumptuous talk on the use of clothing in worldbuilding, and the effects that clothing can have on society, and our writing. We'll hear the winning entries to May's 75-word challenge, and April's 300-word challenge, written by Oliver Helm and Victoria Silverwolf respectively, and we get an unexpected phone call from an ex-President of the United States, whose home extension has gotten out of hand and seems to lead to the belt of Orion. Join us next month when we'll be joined by literary agent John Jarrold to talk about Rob Holdstock's winner of the 1984 World Fantasy Award, Mythago Wood. Index [00:00 - 52:54] Ed Wilson Interview Part 1 [52:54 - 54:07] Voicemail 1 [54:08 - 1:08:28] The Judge's Corner [1:08:28 - 1:09:10] Voicemail 2 [1:09:11 - 1:12:31] Writing Challenge Winners [1:12:32 - 1:13:43] Voicemail 3 [1:13:44 - 2:07:31] Ed Wilson Interview Part 2 [2:07:32 - 2:09:36] - Credits
S1 E6 - House Of Leaves with Ed Wilson
Jun 6 2022
S1 E6 - House Of Leaves with Ed Wilson
This episode we finally open that door of the Chronscast household we'd not dared to open before and plunge into the abyssal labyrinth that is Mark Danielewski's maddeningly epic debut novel, House Of Leaves. A book that defies conventional categorisation, it's been described as a horror, a literary piece, a puzzle, and even a love story. We're joined on this subterranean literary odyssey by renowned literary agent Ed Wilson. Ed is the director of the Johnson & Alcock literary agency, representing a vibrant and developing list of fiction and non-fiction, from new and debut writers to established, bestselling and award-winning authors. With Ed we gleefully dip down the House Of Leaves rabbithole, discussing ergodic literature, innovation in writing, the perils of overanalysing texts, and the Manic Street Preachers. We also chat about the submissions process and navigating the slush pile, and the options open to authors and agents. Elsewhere, The Judge gives a sumptuous talk on the use of clothing in worldbuilding, and the effects that clothing can have on society, and our writing. We'll hear the winning entries to May's 75-word challenge, and April's 300-word challenge, written by Oliver Helm and Victoria Silverwolf respectively, and we get an unexpected phone call from an ex-President of the United States, whose home extension has gotten out of hand and seems to lead to the belt of Orion. Join us next month when we'll be joined by literary agent John Jarrold to talk about Rob Holdstock's winner of the 1984 World Fantasy Award, Mythago Wood. Index [00:00 - 52:54] Ed Wilson Interview Part 1 [52:54 - 54:07] Voicemail 1 [54:08 - 1:08:28] The Judge's Corner [1:08:28 - 1:09:10] Voicemail 2 [1:09:11 - 1:12:31] Writing Challenge Winners [1:12:32 - 1:13:43] Voicemail 3 [1:13:44 - 2:07:31] Ed Wilson Interview Part 2 [2:07:32 - 2:09:36] - Credits
S1 E5 - WATCHMEN with Tade Thompson
May 9 2022
S1 E5 - WATCHMEN with Tade Thompson
On this episode of Chronscast we're joined by award-winning SF author Tade Thompson to talk about WATCHMEN, Alan Moore and Dave Gibbons's comic-book masterpiece that skewers the superhero genre using its own architecture. Tade is the author of numerous novels, including the critically acclaimed sci-fi novel Rosewater, the first in his award winning WORMWOOD TRILOGY, Making Wolf, and most recently Far From the Heaven, and the Molly Southbourne series. He has won the Arthur C. Clarke Award, the Nommo Award, the Kitschies Golden Tentacle award, and the Julia Verlange award, and been shortlisted for the Hugo Award, the Philip K. Dick Award, the British Science Fiction Association Award, and the Shirley Jackson Prize. We talk about how WATCHMEN reflects contemporary 1980s existential anxieties around the Cold War nuclear annihilation, and how it skewers the absurd braggadocio of the superhero genre. We dig down into the weeds of the book, picking apart the characters, their differing pathologies, and whether salvation lies in a masked figure. We ask how the genre can innovate from here, and why WATCHMEN endures. We also touch on the free spiritedness of Manga, writing fractured timelines as seen in Rosewater, and how the creation of narratives builds a psychological bridge between art and clinical practice. The Judge gives us the second part of her talk on defamation, reminding us the usually the only winners of such altercations are the lawyers - so watch out! Elsewhere we hear Starship, Christine Wheelwright's excellent winning entry to the April 75-word writing challenge, and Superman has an axe to grind with Pine Marten Man... or is he just jealous? Further Reading You Better Watch Yourself Superfolk The Kryptonite Kid Quack This Way Where Are You Now, Batman? Join SFF Chronicles for free Join us next time when we'll be joined by Ed Wilson, literary agent and director of the Johnson & Alcock literary agency. Ed will walk with us through the labyrinth that is Mark Danielewski's mad millennial monster story House Of Leaves. Index [00:00:00] Tade Thompson Interview Part 1 [1:04:03] Voicemail 1 [1:05:10] The Judge's Corner [1:18:03] Voicemail 2 [1:19:00] Writing Challenge Winner [1:21:02] Voicemail 3 [1:22:00] Tade Thompson Interview Part 2
S1 E4 - Swords And Deviltry with Stephen Cox
Apr 4 2022
S1 E4 - Swords And Deviltry with Stephen Cox
Today we're joined by Stephen Cox, the author of the science-fiction drama Our Child Of The Stars, and the newly-published sequel, Our Child Of Two Worlds, both published by Jo Fletcher Books. Stephen dives with us into Fritz Leiber's swords-and-sorcery classic, Swords And Deviltry, which introduces two of fantasy's greatest heroes, the barbarian Fafhrd, and the sly swordsman Gray Mouser. We talk about the origin stories of the two heroes, and the psychodramas contained therein, paying attention to how the young protagonists must each escape the very different types of parental stranglehold to make their own way in the world; the female characters of the world of Nehwon; and Leiber's huge, pervasive influence upon the fantasy genre in all its guises, from fiction to D&D to computer gaming.  We also take an in-depth look at Stephen's latest novel, Our Child Of Two Worlds, which continues the story of the charming but lost alien child Cory, and introduces an existential threat to humanity from the outer reaches of the cosmos. Stephen tells us about some of his writing processes, the experience of having two literary agents, and the difficulties of publishing in the 21st century. We also discuss the question of "Hard" SF versus "Soft" SF, and how this is affecting current trends in the genre. Elsewhere The Judge provides fascinating historical (and futuristic) information on how writers might use the issue of defamation for their worldbuilding. We hear Stuart Orford's winning entry from the March 75-word writing challenge, and strange reports of dragons and sorcerers abound in Kinnegad, near the bus stop. Join us in May when our guest will be the multiple award-winning author Tade Thompson, who will be waxing lyrical about Alan Moore and Dave Gibbons's comic book maxiseries masterpiece, WATCHMEN. Index [00:00] Stephen Cox Interview Part 1 [38:57] Voicemail 1 [39:41] The Judge's Corner [54:55] Voicemail 2 [55:54] Writing Challenge Winner [56:55] Voicemail 3 [58:05] Stephen Cox Interview Part 2 Links Stephen Cox's website and blog Join Chrons for free
S1 E3 - An American Werewolf In London with Richard Sheppard
Mar 7 2022
S1 E3 - An American Werewolf In London with Richard Sheppard
For this episode we're joined by Richard Sheppard, host of The Constant Reader Podcast, which takes a deep dive into all things Stephen King, from his numerous novels to the equally numerous movie and TV adaptations of his work. Richard talks with us about John Landis's seminal 1981 film An American Werewolf in London, a horror comedy that is funny and scary in equal measure, and remains the high watermark for werewolf movies everywhere, and especially so for a curious period in the early 1980s when werewolf fever seems to have had America in its lycanthropic claw. We talk werewolves in general, taking in themes of duality, Jewishness, sexuality, the Beauty and the Beast myth, and of course, the literally transformative advances made in movie make-up and special effects technology in the late 1970s and early 1980s. We also take the time to talk about The Constant Reader Podcast, about podcasting more generally, and the possibilities of making your voice heard using non-conventional means. Elsewhere, The Judge delivers her verdict on defamation, we'll hear Third Player, our very own Christopher's winning entry from the January 300-word challenge, and A Better Yesterday, Reiver33's winning entry from the February 75-word challenge, and a regular evening down in Slish Wood takes a turn for the worse when a full Moon appears from behind the clouds... Further Reading and Links The Constant Reader Podcast Join SFF Chronicles for free Index [00:00] Richard Sheppard Interview Part 1  [47:20] Voicemail 1 [48:23] The Judge's Corner [1:02:24] Voicemail 2 [1:03:08] Writing Challenge Winners [1:06:18] Voicemail 3 [1:07:08] Richard Sheppard Interview Part 2 Join us next month when we talk to author Stephen Cox about swords and sorcery in Fritz Leiber's genre classic Swords And Deviltry, featuring two of fantasy's greatest heroes, Fafhrd and the Gray Mouser, and Stephen's latest novel Our Child Of Two Worlds.
S1 E2 - Klara And The Sun with Jo Zebedee
Feb 7 2022
S1 E2 - Klara And The Sun with Jo Zebedee
We're joined on this episode by Jo Zebedee, author of several novels, including the Abendau space opera trilogy, the dystopian Inish Carraig and the Irish fantasy Waters And The Wild. Jo talks to us about Klara And The Sun, Kazuo Ishiguro's 2020 novel about a sickly young girl who purchases a robotic "Artificial Friend" called Klara. Klara sets about trying to heal her human owner by using some very strange logic. Jo talks with us about how the book, despite being told from a robot's POV, shows us how to live the most human of lives. We also touch on themes of science vs engineering, the human heart, and whether the book is really the dystopian fiction that it's marketed as. Jo also talks with us about her new novel The Wildest Hunt, published by Inspired Quill, and about her own body of work. We touch on male and female lead characters, the strong Northern Irish element running through her books, and the difficulties of writing as a career, and what we can do to mitigate that. We'll also stop by at The Judge's Corner to take a bite into the meaty topic of Food and the Law, we'll hear a reading of Little Match(maker) Girl, Peter V's winning entry from the January 75-word writing challenge, and get critical new information about the Jupiterian invasion of Slish Wood. Further Reading Service With A Smile in Klara And The Sun Jo Zebedee's Website Join SFF Chronicles for free The End Of All Things by Juliana Spink Mills - Kraxon Magazine's story of the year for 2021 Index [00:00 - 43:21] Jo Zebedee Interview Part 1 [43:22 - 44:20] Voicemail #1 [44:20 - 57:16] The Judge's Corner [57:22 - 58:13] Voicemail #2 [58:13 - 59:42] Writing Challenge Winners [59:47 - 1:00:43] Voicemail #3 [1:00:47 - 1:38:44] Jo Zebedee Interview Part 2 And join us next month, when we'll be discussing the classic horror-comedy film An American Werewolf In London with the writer and podcaster Richard Sheppard.
S1 E1 - Northern Lights with Stephen Palmer
Jan 10 2022
S1 E1 - Northern Lights with Stephen Palmer
We were joined on this episode by Stephen Palmer, author of several genre novels including Memory Seed, Tommy Catkins, The Girl With Two Souls, and many more. His latest novel, Monique Orphan, was published in November 2021 by Infinite Press. Stephen spoke with us about Philip Pullman's Northern Lights. We discussed the novel's call to action on the part of the protagonist, its rich and complex themes, whether it really succeeds in laying down its atheist credentials, and how Pullman drew the narrative out of John Milton's epic poem Paradise Lost.  Stephen talks about his own long career, including his latest novel Monique Orphan, the importance for writers of having something to say, and the equal but infuriating importance of luck to a career in writing. We also stop by at The Judge's Corner to learn about copyright, hear the winning entry from December's 75-word writing challenge, by Cat's Cradle, and listen to some odd voicemails received by the Chronscast inbox. Links The Abyssal Awakening Of Mankind in Northern Lights and Paradise Lost Philip Pullman's Introduction to Paradise Lost Stephen Palmer's official website Join SFF Chronicles for free Index [00:00 - 59:10] Stephen Palmer interview Part 1 [59:15 - 59:44] Voicemail #1 [59:45 - 1:17:45] The Judge's Corner [1:17:46 - 1:18:12] Voicemail #2 [1:18:13 - 1:19:51] Writing Challenge Winner [1:19:52 - 1:20:24] Voicemail #3 [1:20:28 - 1:49:05] Stephen Palmer interview Part 2