From Modern Mythcraft to Magical Surrealism

THECONDUCTORS

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Podcasts

Nonfiction

Golden Lilies by Aliette de Bodard (audio)

It was the smell which woke me up, insinuating itself between the planks of my coffin: cooked meat mingling with the sweet odour of aromatic rice, and the tangy hint of fruit and spices — a powerful summoning if there ever was one.

Nonfiction

The Water Tower by John Mantooth (audio)

At a certain point, somewhere past the junkyard, out beyond the little pond that, over the years, had been used to dump the things even the junkyard didn’t want, the woods changed. But not just the woods. The things in the woods changed as well.

Nonfiction

Voice Like a Cello by Catherine Cheek (audio)

Mama had believed enough to sacrifice her savings and emigrate here, all for the sake of her poor, insane, eight-year-old daughter. Mama had found a place on a map, a city that wouldn’t exist without air conditioning and irrigation. A place with no history.

Nonfiction

Birds by Jean-Claude Dunyach (audio)

The road stretches east. The ancient ruts are filled with dust. Tufts of yellowish grass rise up through the pebbles. The village remains out of sight for almost the entire walk, but the man counts his steps, just as he measures everything, and he knows exactly when he’ll arrive. The insects leave him be, while the lizards watch him from afar.

Nonfiction

Shades of White and Road by Camille Alexa (audio)

It came to me that I should run away from home taking nothing but myself and so I thought I would and so I did. I’d not gone ten turns of the spiral before a small leathery suitcase began to tag along in my invisible wake. “Take me! Use me! Fill me!” it said. “Please, please fill me; I need to be filled.”

Nonfiction

The Table Tennis Fantasy Tour

The Shandling show features a Goddess of Ping-Pong, a sometimes incandescent paddle carved out of a tree felled by a lightning bolt, and the climactic finish where Shandling smashes the final winner, and the ball goes into the air and–just as in the baseball version–knocks out the gym’s lights, showering everyone with sparks.

Nonfiction

Okra, Sorghum, Yam

“The Okra, Sorghum, Yam,” by Bruce Holland Rogers, read by Rachel Swirsky, and brought to you by Podcastle. Published in Realms of Fantasy, October 2003. So the following summer when the second princess came to Old Kwaku’s hut, he said, “What do you want?” “My father said that I must learn wisdom from you.” “And […]

Nonfiction

The Voices of the Snakes

“The Voices of the Snakes,” by Karina Sumner-Smith, read by Rachel Swirsky, and brought to you by Podcastle. Published in Issue #2 of Fantasy Magazine, February 2006. “Hello poison, hello grave-specter, hello nightmare,” the little green grass snake called, his tiny voice high and all his sibilants hissed. He flicked his tongue and uncurled his […]

Nonfiction

In This City by Brian Dolton (audio)

In this city, there are glass sculptures that catch the light from stars as yet unborn. In this city, there are buildings made of woven silk and mirrorwood. They fold themselves around one another like lovers, and their passionate sighs are the wind in the subway. In this city, subway trains rattle on tracks of bone and ivory. In this city, the night is bright with the livid green of burning ectoplasm. In this city, darkness can be touched, and feels like heavy velvet. In this city, the night breathes.

Nonfiction

The Desires of Houses by Haddayr Copley-Woods (audio)

The floor is sulking. She almost always wears shoes in the basement, and the cement lies all day in agony listening to the first floor’s boards sighing loudly in ecstasy at the touch of her bare heels. All it can hope for in its slow, cold way is that the woman will scoop the cat boxes, squatting on her heels, after she starts a load of laundry. Today oh joy oh joy she does. The floor is practically writhing at the smell of her (she always showers after the scooping, so her scent is thick)—the tangy rich odor. The cement feels (or maybe it’s just wishful thinking) just a bit of her damp warmth.