It's finally happening! We're diving fully into one of Matt's areas of expertise, Chinese Literature. This month we're reading Waste Tide (https://amzn.to/2N4K80g), the first novel by Chinese science fiction author Chen Qiufan (known as Stanley Chan in English), translated by Ken Liu. 

The book is new to both of us, so in addition to the usual bookfacts, this episode starts with a short introduction to the sociolinguistics of the Chinese language. From there we learn about the history of modern Chinese literature w/ a focus on how speculative fiction has been received over the last century, from the earliest Chinese translations of Jules Verne to the modern resurgence of SF & Fantasy movies coming out of China, and how that relates to other literary & political movements. 

Some of the works we discuss include:

* Invisible Planets, edited & translated by Ken Liu

* Chen Qiufan's stories at Clarkesworld (includes audio versions)

* Clarkesworld Podcast

* "Flower of Shazui" (set in the same world as Waste Tide

* The Paper Menagerie & Other Stories by Ken Liu

* The Grace of Kings by Ken Liu

(Links in the shownotes at spectology.com if they don't show up in your podcatcher)

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As always, we'd love to hear from you! Chat with us on twitter at @spectologypod, send us an email at spectologypod@gmail.com, or submit the episode to r/printSF on reddit. We'll reply, and shout you out in the next podcast when we talk about your comment.

And if you like the episode, subscribe at spectology.com or whever you listen to podcasts, and share it with your friends!

Many thanks to Dubby J and Noah Bradley for doing our music and art.

Hey folks! Short description bc it's already very late & I'm trying to get this out. I may update this later w/ more info, check spectology.com in the next day or two if you'd like more links to all the other books we mention. 

The book this month is The Killing Moon by NK Jemisin! It's a great book, potentially my favorite of hers. https://amzn.to/31DKqyr

Matt & I spend a very long time talking about worldbuilding, different ways of doing it, books we love that do it well, etc.. It's quite the pre-read. Also, we're having some technical difficulties due to travel, so the sound is listenable but not to our usual standards. We should be better next episode, & back to normal next month.

The connected short story I mentioned ("The Narcomancer") is available as a podcast here: http://podcastle.org/2010/01/05/podcastle-85-giant-episode-the-narcomancer/

NK Jemisin's worldbuilding presentation is available here: http://nkjemisin.com/2015/08/worldbuilding-101/

And finally, her patreon is: https://www.patreon.com/nkjemisin

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We'd love to hear from you, either by chatting with us on twitter at @spectologypod, sending us an email at spectologypod@gmail.com, or submitting the episode to r/printSF on reddit. We'll reply, and shout you out in the next podcast when we talk about your comment.

And if you like the episode, subscribe at spectology.com or whever you listen to podcasts, and share it with your friends!

Many thanks to Dubby J and Noah Bradley for doing our music and art.

 

What goes around comes around on the wheel of karma, so this month Matt & Adrian talking about the new novel from past guest Max Gladstone, Empress of Forever (https://amzn.to/2Jl9X94)! 

We discuss a number of books, movies, TV shows, and RPGs in the general space opera subgenre. Here are some of the most relevant. If the links don't show up in your podcatcher, they will be available on the show notes at spectology.com. 

- Empress of Forever by Max Gladstone 
- This is How You Lose the Time War by Amal El-Mohtar & Max 
- Journey to the West 
- Lord of Light by Roger Zelazny 
- Ten Billion Days & 100 Billion Nights by Ryu Mitsuse (see our 10.1 & 10.2 episodes) 
- Iain M Banks (see our 1.1 & 1.2 episodes on his Use of Weapons
- Gnomon by Nick Harkaway (see our 5.1 & 5.2 episodes w/ Max as a guest) 
- The New Space Opera & TNSO2, ed. Gardner Dozois & Jonathan Strahan
- Sufficiently Advanced (RPG) 
- Ghibli Fest 2019 (particularly Princess Mononoke) 
- Neon Genesis Evangelion (on Netflix) 

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We'd love to hear from you (tell us your definition of space opera!), either by chatting with us on twitter at @spectologypod, sending us an email at spectologypod@gmail.com, or submitting the episode to r/printSF on reddit. We'll reply, and shout you out in the next podcast when we talk about your comment.

And if you like the episode, subscribe at spectology.com or whever you listen to podcasts, and share it with your friends!

Many thanks to Dubby J and Noah Bradley for doing our music and art.

Adrian & Matt are back on their own this month, reading & talking about the short story collection Exhalation, by Ted Chiang. A wonderful collection of short fiction, we've decided to do something a little bit different from the usual. 

With this episode we talk about the power of short-form fiction, why we love Chiang's work so much, and (starting at 43:25) ask each other a couple tough philosophical questions of the type Chiang's stories attempt to answer. 

Books & movies mentioned include (links help support Spectology, go to spectology.com if they're not showing up):

- Exhalation, by Ted Chiang 
- Stories of Your Life & Others, by Ted Chiang 
- Store of the Worlds, by Robert Sheckley 
- The Best Stories of JG Ballard 
- Her Smoke Rose up Forever, by James Tiptree, Jr
- Tobias Buckell's Patreon 
- Best American Science Fiction & Fantasy, ed. NK Jemisin 
- The Best SF&F of the Year series, ed. Jonathan Strahan 
- Interview w/ Chiang at Powel's 
- Interview w/ Walter Mosley at Paris Review 

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We'd love to hear from you, either by chatting with us on twitter at @spectologypod, sending us an email at spectologypod@gmail.com, or submitting the episode to r/printSF on reddit. We'll reply, and shout you out in the next podcast when we talk about your comment.

And if you like the episode, subscribe at spectology.com or whever you listen to podcasts, and share it with your friends!

Many thanks to Dubby J and Noah Bradley for doing our music and art.

This month, we welcome the Demographically Similar Jennys from the wonderful & charming Reading the End Podcast to Spectology to read Ann Leckie's newest book, The Raven Tower! (https://amzn.to/2VShdjK)

The four of us discuss our past experiences reading both fantasy & science fiction, and how gender is used within those genres, as well as how it drives decisions about how to market those genres by the larger publishing industry. 

We couldn't have more well-read, fun, & knowledgeable guests for this discussion, so we really hope you enjoy this ep, and check out the Jennys' podcast as well. A great place to start would be Adrian's guest episode from last week: https://readingtheend.com/2019/05/01/podcast-ep-117-a-spectology-crossover-event/ 

Works mentioned this episode include:

* The Raven Tower by Ann Leckie 
* Herland by Charlotte Perkins Gilman 
* Frankenstein by Mary Shelley 
* The Blazing World by Margaret Cavendish
The Clewiston Test by Kate Wilhelm
* NK Jemisin's 2018 Hugo Award speech (video embedded in article) 

(As always, links are at spectology.com if they don't show up in your podcatcher. And if I missed something mentioned in the episode, tweet at @spectologypod or @readingtheend and we'll find it for you.)

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We'd love to hear from you, either by chatting with us on twitter at @spectologypod, sending us an email at spectologypod@gmail.com, or submitting the episode to r/printSF on reddit. We'll reply, and shout you out in the next podcast when we talk about your comment.

And if you like the episode, subscribe at spectology.com or whever you listen to podcasts, and share it with your friends!

Many thanks to Dubby J and Noah Bradley for doing our music and art.

To celebrate having been at the podcast for one full year, Matt & Adrian are joined by Kevin Kelsey of Heradas.com as we make our most self-indulgent pick yet: Dark Eden, by Chris Beckett (https://amzn.to/2TRcpX0).

Join us for a somewhat self-reflective episode on why this is one of our favorite books, and why we think everyone should read it. It has linguistics, it has sociology, it has long time scales, it has survival in a harsh world, it has society building, it has a page-turning story, and it is probably the book we've mentioned the most on this podcast without actually reading and talking about it in its own episodes.

Kevin joins us to help us ground the conversation for folks who haven't read the book yet, and in a few weeks we'll all three dig into the rich thematic depth of this novel.

Some other works mentioned include:

Chris's Q&A on the SF Book Club subreddit 
- Chris on his history being labeled disabled 
- NK Jemisin's review of Dark Eden in the NY Times 
- Review by a juror on the Arthur C. Clarke award
- Our own episodes on Children of Time, Romie Futch, Gnomon, & Semiosis 
- Ice by Anna Kavan 
- The Helliconia Trilogy by Brian Aldiss 
- Lord of the Flies by William Golding 
- And if you're in the UK, pre-order Beckett's new book, Beneath the World, A Sea 

(As always, links are at spectology.com if they don't show up in your podcatcher.)

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We'd love to hear from you, either by chatting with us on twitter at @spectologypod, sending us an email at spectologypod@gmail.com, or submitting the episode to r/printSF on reddit. We'll reply, and shout you out in the next podcast when we talk about your comment.

And if you like the episode, subscribe at spectology.com or whever you listen to podcasts, and share it with your friends!

Many thanks to Dubby J and Noah Bradley for doing our music and art.

If you like stories about Alaska, then this is the episode for you! Author, game developer, and Adrian's childhood friend Nate Spence is this month's guest, discussing the ecological survival SF novel Semiosis by Sue Burke (https://amzn.to/2TceBgh). In the novel, a small group of humans tries to colonize what seems like a wilderness planet. The novel follows their survival & evolution of their society over generations.

In this episode, we talk a lot about growing up in wilderness areas and what it's like. What's a pushki? What did Nate's dad teach him in lieu of tying his shoes? Where did Matt bleed from on his Alaska hiking trip and why? How can Adrian possibly defend hitting an owl with his car? What search terms about Alaska do we not suggest you image search? We can't promise we answer these questions, but we'll sure talk about them. 

We'll also go over the usual book facts, while trying hard not to spoil what is an interesting, different, and so far very fun to read book!

Also, thanks to Amanda Hart, Nate's wife, for supplying our cover artwork this month! Check out her instagram, @amandalamandala.

Resources mentioned (go to spectology.com if the links don't show up in your podcatcher):

* Nate's most recent game, Ectolibrium, on Steam Early Access 
* Ectolibrium discounted in the IndieGala Bundle (not pay what you want tho)
* Dark Eden Trilogy by Chris Beckett 
* Annihilation by Jeff VanderMeer
* The Word for World is Forest by Ursula K Le Guin 
* Embassytown by China Miéville
Station 11 by Emily St. John Mandel 
* Article about the Russian Orthodox Old Believers in Alaska 
* Correction: Alaska is the 8th least white state, but has the highest percentage of indigenous people of any state

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We'd love to hear from you, either by chatting with us on twitter at @spectologypod, sending us an email at spectologypod@gmail.com, or submitting the episode to r/printSF on reddit. We'll reply, and shout you out in the next podcast when we talk about your comment.

And if you like the episode, subscribe at spectology.com or whever you listen to podcasts, and share it with your friends!

Many thanks to Dubby J and Noah Bradley for doing our music and art.

This month on Spectology, we're reading Brown Girl in the Ring (https://amzn.to/2G9dqqZ) by Nalo Hopkinson, a classic of Caribbean SF & Fantasy. A young mother must outwit a warlord in post-apocalyptic Toronto in order to save her community, but to do so she'll need the help of that community & its gods.

Adrian & Matt are joined by Mendez Hodes (https://jamesmendezhodes.com), a writer & cultural consultant who works on RPGs and education curricula, who has an academic background is in African Religions. Together, they discuss how African religions found their way to the Americas through the trans-Atlantic slave trade, the details of that religious practice, how to respectfully think & talk about race & non-Western religions, and why rap is the ideal translated form for the ancient Homeric epics. We also talk about science fiction books! 

Some of the books & resources mentioned in this episode:

* Brown Girl in the Ring by Nalo Hopkinson (read the book, it's great!)
Mumbo Jumbo by Ishmael Reed 
* Black God's Drums by P. Djeli Clarke 
* The Summer Prince by Alaya Dawn Johnson 
* Xenogenesis series by Octavia Butler 
Soft Apocalypse by Will McIntosh 

And some nonfiction resources to learn more about Western African religions in the Americas:

* Our episode with Tobias Buckell discussing Caribbean SF in depth. 
* Flash of the Spirit by Robert Ferris Thompson 
* The Serpent & the Rainbow by Wade Davis 
Black Magic by Yvonne Chireau 

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We'd love to hear from you, either by chatting with us on twitter at @spectologypod, sending us an email at spectologypod@gmail.com, or submitting the episode to r/printSF on reddit. We'll reply, and shout you out in the next podcast when we talk about your comment.

And if you like the episode, subscribe at spectology.com or whever you listen to podcasts, and share it with your friends!

Many thanks to Dubby J and Noah Bradley for doing our music and art.

This month, Adrian is joined by listener, poet, & publisher Charlotte Geater (@tambourine) to discuss Rupetta, by N.A. Sulway.

Rupetta is an under-appreciated historical SF novel about a clockwork woman & the human women through history who act as her caretakers. It won the James Tiptree, Jr. award in 2013, and was recently re-published in ebook format. 

Charlotte & Adrian discuss the publishing history of the book, Sulway's other works, historiography, folk tales, and the metaphors by which we understand consciousness. 

Works & links mentioned include:

* An interview with Sulway about one of the folk histories that inspired Rupetta 
* Another interview on other influences 
* The Jaquet-Droz automota in Neuchatel, Switzerland 
* Stories of Your Life and Others by Ted Chiang 
* Exhalation by Ted Chiang 
* Tender: Stories by Sophia Samatar 
* Jonathan Strange & Mr. Norrell by Susanna Clarke 
Frankenstein by Mary Shelley 

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As always, we'd love to hear from you, either by chatting with us on twitter at @spectologypod, sending us an email at spectologypod@gmail.com, or submitting the episode to r/printSF on reddit. We'll reply, and shout you out in the next podcast when we talk about your comment.

And if you like the episode, subscribe at spectology.com or whever you listen to podcasts, and share it with your friends!

Many thanks to Dubby J and Noah Bradley for doing our music and art.

This November we're reading Children of Time by Adrian Tchaikovsky. Woo Adrians!

This episode we discuss what the "science" in science fiction means. What other books portray science well? What does it mean to write a book about science? Should science fiction try to be "realistic"? 

In addition, we give you the book facts, and discuss a number of other works. Links are at spectology.com if they don't show up in your podcatcher:

Blindsight by Peter Watts
* Ursula K. Le Guin
Foreigner by CJ Cherryh
The Mote in God's Eye by Larry Niven & Jerry Pournelle
The Sparrow by Mary Doria Russell (also see episodes 2.1 & 2.2 of Spectology for further discussion thereof)
* The Dark Eden Trilogy by Chris Beckett
* The Mars Trilogy by KSR
Stories of Your Life and Others by Ted Chiang
* The Arthur C. Clarke Awards

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We'd love to hear from you, either by chatting with us on twitter at @spectologypod, sending us an email at spectologypod@gmail.com, or submitting the episode to r/printSF on reddit. We'll reply, and shout you out in the next podcast when we talk about your comment.

And if you like the episode, subscribe at spectology.com or whever you listen to podcasts, and share it with your friends!

Many thanks to Dubby J and Noah Bradley for doing our music and art.

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