Sunday, 3 January 2010

Castmonger #1: Story Podcast

Castmonger's inaugural recommendation has been a long time coming, and I don't just mean the time it's taken you, dear reader, to plough through all the introductory nonsense in the previous post. Tor, as we all well know, is a prolific publishing house specialising in all things science-fiction and fantasy; its internet offshoot, however, of course, took until the great redesign of 2009 to become truly relevant.

The site has been offering excellent audio fiction for download for a year and change already - untold millennia in internet time - although only in December did the Story Podcast come into existence. Its master of ceremonies is in actual fact a mistress; the dulcet tones of prolific author and podcaster extraordinaire Mur Lafferty introduces a new short story every week. She may not know how to pronounce "Edinburgh", but let's face it: few humans can.

That minor gripe aside, Mur is the perfect host, keeping the chit-chat before the main attraction brief but pleasant. Not many listeners will tune in to hear her read out copyright notices, ads and occasional news snippets from the Tor blog, but the selection of free audio shorts she's presented to date - alternating between original fiction and choice cuts culled from those the site has archived in the last year - make for an excellent, if necessarily abbreviated track record.

Although the Story Podcast is only two weeks old at the time of writing, it got off to a great start with John Scalzi reading his own After the Coup, an acerbic extended action sequence, and hard act to follow or not, local author Charles Stross' did an admirable job with Overtime, a timely little taste of festive sci-fi fun. If you've been know to enjoy an hourlong audiobook in the past, and the pair published thus far are any indication of what's to come, you'll want to add this podcast to your RSS reader of choice.

(I'm a Ziepod man myself. Here's to pointless bells and whistles!)


Click here for more information on the Story Podcast, or give in to the Castmonger's incessant demands like a great big girl and subscribe to the podcast discussed in this post via the following links:

... For regular RSS readers:
... An iTunes link will be forthcoming.

If you'd like to submit your podcast or a personal favourite for consideration by the cruel Castmonger, simply leave a link and a brief description in the comments section.

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