The Sword and Laser

The Sword and Laser
Different worlds, different discussions!
#343 - Math Is Hard
Jan 17 • 37 min
We’re very pleased that the Hugo Nominations are open and we’ll keep reminding you. Also we’re pleased to discuss pairing beer with novels and pleased to look over the new Philip K. Dick award nominees. We’re pleased to be reading Ninefox Gambit too, even…
#342 - So, You’re a Crow Nut?
Jan 3 • 47 min
We’re SO excited for books coming out this year, AND we award our favorite Sword and Laser reads for 2018! We finish with our final thoughts on Crows.
#341 - All You Need is Brain
Dec 20, 2018 • 37 min
The Sword and Laser bump returns! Also, Veronica wants to start reading comics. And we realize we need brain, but that’s all we need. Isn’t that festive!
#340 - No Birdy Poos
Dec 6, 2018 • 39 min
The Verge is writing SciFi for a better tomorrow, plus is Roald Dahl Fantasy? Is It’s a Wonderful Life SciFi?
#339 - Nope Ropes on a Tren
Nov 29, 2018 • 37 min
We’ve got options! For TV shows! Well we don’t but Annalee Newitz, Mira Grant and Kristine Kathryn Rusch do! Plus our feelings on Zeroes.
#338 - Hygge Punk
Nov 15, 2018 • 33 min
Tom inadvertently affects a listener feud, the truth about George R. R. Martin and why we think Zeroes is number 1.
#337 - Hackers, but Bears
Oct 26, 2018 • 40 min
Well we are certainly interested in Molly Gloss after that Ursula K. Leguin blurb, we’re mad on behalf of Chuck Wendig, each for different reasons, and coincidentally Zeroes by Chuck Wendig is our next pick. Plus we wrap up the journey that is Matt Ruff’s…
#336 - Optional Excitement
Oct 11, 2018 • 28 min
We’re excited for optioned TV series for Circe and Dresden Files even if they are just options. Also we brainstorm Type 3 civilizations and female gearheads.
#335 - Do You Know the Way to Slan Jose?
Sep 27, 2018 • 36 min
Gorgeous LeGuin books, more Bobiverse! and our final take on Slan.
#334 - Is it a Slan Dunk?
Sep 13, 2018 • 26 min
We’re excited for TV with Henry Cavill as Geralt, and maybe even some Witchlands! Plus our initial non-spoilery impressions of this month’s book, Slan.
#333 - Getting Timeless with R. A. Salvatore
Sep 3, 2018 • 27 min
We talk to author R. A. Salvatore about his new book Timeless, and also how he feels these days about Chewbacca, Dungeons and Dragons and more. Timeless is out September 4. Pick it up in the Salvastore!
#332 - Losers and Lovin’ It
Aug 30, 2018 • 26 min
We lost the Hugos and it was AWESOME! Plus we have great news about a new novel coming from Rivers Solomon, and a new ebookstore from Wal-Mart. Plus we kick off Slan by A. E. van Vogt and our final thoughts on Jade City.
#331 - Where Have All the Good Guys Gone?
Aug 16, 2018 • 34 min
SFF readers have more mature relationship views. It’s science. And hey! We’re still Hugo-nominated! Will we stay that way or become winners? Who can say? But we have other things to say, like what we think of Jade City by Fonda Lee.
#330 - Best Jade Plans
Aug 2, 2018 • 30 min
The Tor vs. Library saga continues, we’re pumped for the World Fantasy Award nominees, and the serendipity of reading a book about the place you are at while you’re reading it. Trust us. It will make sense in the show.
#329 - Mad Love for Dog
Jul 19, 2018 • 38 min
We’re excited about new monsters and solarpunk but mostly we’re excited about Mortal Engines! Except for all the murder.
Jul 5, 2018 • 63 min
We team up with Mallory and Brea from Reading Glasses for a supercollaboration with reading advice, emails, and discussion of Mortal Engines.
#327 - Real Housewives of the Aegean
Jun 21, 2018 • 35 min
Why we think Amazon may have been cribbing off us, the reality TV connection to ancient Greece, and the raging 2X audiobook debate speeds along.
#326 - Slow Down, Readers!
Jun 14, 2018 • 40 min
A database of all the stories, Stranger Things enters the tie-in book world, a debate about speed-listening, and what Veronica REALLY thinks about Zeus.
#325 - Mythology Ideology
May 31, 2018 • 49 min
We’re very excited about the Expanse coming back and Gail Carriger’s plans and that the “What are we drinking” segment got a good review! Plus the different takes on mythology from our two latest book picks.
#324 - Brian McClellan Knows When to Deus that Ex Machina
May 17, 2018 • 27 min
Brian McClellan joins us to talk about his latest book, Wrath of Empire (second book in the Gods of Blood and Powder series). Plus we find out why he may not want to time travel, and what his writing kryptonite is!
#323 - Demon Mythology
May 10, 2018 • 34 min
So many awards! Locus, Scribe, Parsec, oh my! Plus why we think maybe it’s OK to read the 21 books you shouldn’t read, and we kick off Tanith Lee’s amazing Night’s Master.
#322 - Analysis Paralysis
Apr 25, 2018 • 39 min
Have you ever walked into a book store and just froze? Us too. We’ll talk you through it. Plus we announced the May book pick and Tanith Lee fans will be happy! Because it’s by Tanith Lee! Also the wrap-up for We Are Legion (We are Bob).
#321 - What is Camp? Baby Don’t Yurt Me
Apr 13, 2018 • 32 min
We are SO excited to be nominated for the Hugos! Thank you! Also the return of the Expanse and why Amazon will spend $1 billion on a Middle Earth show.
#320 - We are Sword (We are Laser)
Mar 29, 2018 • 45 min
The March tournament was so much fun, and in the end we’ll read We Are Legion (We Are Bob) which is an appropriately fun book. We also talk about other podcasts that are cool to listen to, plus our last thoughts on the beautiful complexity of An…
#319 - An Unkindness of Blurbs
Mar 15, 2018 • 39 min
More Pratchett TV coming, and more Rothfuss books? Plus more deep discussion about an Unkindness of Ghosts, including why blurbs may lead you astray.
#318 - I Wanna Know What Love Is
Mar 1, 2018 • 40 min
Tom tries to convince Veronica to fight hate, but A Wrinkle In Time has her questioning love’s power.
#317 - Crew Goals
Feb 16, 2018 • 28 min
Hey the Hugo nominations are open and you can vote for us! Also Firefly is coming back as books. And the Hugo nominations are open and you can vote for us. Plus StoryBundle has an awesome set of books called Black Narratives! And the Hugo nominations are…
#316 - Why’d Ya Do It, Ernie?
Feb 1, 2018 • 43 min
We share our memories and thoughts on the passing of Ursula K. Leguin. We also talk about how silly it is to think anybody but George R. R. Martin truly knows the release date for Winds of Winter, and discover the true villain of Mary Shelley’s…
#315 - Philip K Dick Move
Jan 19, 2018 • 31 min
Goodbye Shannara, hello The Blade Itself TV show? Also Moby Dick and Philip K Dick have different problems, and what the monster in Frankenstein might truly represent.
#314 - Not-So-Young Frankenstein
Jan 4, 2018 • 39 min
It’s a whole new year of books, and we have some suggestions! Plus the science behind Westeros and the amazing 200-year-old Mary Shelley.
#313 - No Bones to Pick
Dec 21, 2017 • 41 min
Ready Player One may have a sequel, The Witcher TV show has a show runner, and we have no bones to pick with California Bones.
#312 - Eating Bones for Fun and Magic
Dec 8, 2017 • 35 min
#312 - Eating Bones for Fun and Magic by swordandlaser
#311 - Science Fiction Triggers Clickbait Headline
Nov 30, 2017 • 42 min
This week we have a lot to say about wine, some to say about Amazon’s Lord of the Rings series and loads to say as we wrap up Connie Willis’ Doomsday Book. Plus we kind of sort of kick off December’s Book, California Bones.
#310 - Apocalypse 1870
Nov 9, 2017 • 36 min
OMG. Patrick Rothfuss is best buds with Lin-Manuel Miranda and they’re doing a TV prequel to Kingkiller Chronicles, while Felicia Day plays Poppy the Dragonologist AND Amazon wants to do a Tolkien series. And that doesn’t even begin to shed light on how…
#309 - League of Extraordinary Ladies
Oct 26, 2017 • 44 min
We’re happy for Chuck Wendig and sad for the passing of Roy Dotrice and Julian May. And we’re also debating whether side conversations are a good literary device.
#308 - A Decade of Us
Oct 12, 2017 • 40 min
That’s right, Sword and Laser has been picking and reading books for 10 years and we’re not even close to stopping. This week we discuss why you don’t need to travel to London to read Theodora Goss but it doesn’t hurt. And why we’re extra excited for Andy…
#307 - Annihilation is the new Arrival
Sep 28, 2017 • 43 min
Good Omens looks good, Annihilation looks great, our last thoughts on Helliconia Spring, and why we’re reading about monsters in October.
#306 - Indentured Robotude w/ Annalee Newitz
Sep 19, 2017 • 29 min
Annalee Newitz joins us on the show to talk about her new novel Autonomous. We discuss indentured robot servitude, the archaeological digs she’s digging right now, and what the future of our economy could look like!
#305 - Major in Martin Studies!
Sep 14, 2017 • 28 min
The Martin Studies International Network will help you study Westeros better, Scott Lynch gives hope for the next Locke Lamora book and sadly, we lose a great one in Jerry Pournelle,
#304 - Westeros for SciFi Fans
Aug 31, 2017 • 45 min
We say goodbye to Brian W. Aldiss by reading one of his books. We respect Terry Pratchett’s Steamroller wishes. And why Hey Jude is not an anachronism.
#303 - Smooth Roberator
Aug 17, 2017 • 33 min
All the best books are being adapted into TV shows and movies including Good Omens, The City and the City, Dawn, and The Fifth Season! Plus we dive into the Gunslinger and talk mostly spoiler-free about fantasy westerns. And BONUS song about our Goodreads…
#302 - Why the Robots Need Us
Aug 10, 2017 • 22 min
We talk with author Daniel H. Wilson about his book, Clockwork Dynasty and why we might not need to fear the robots.
#301 - Long Days and Pleasant Nights
Aug 3, 2017 • 32 min
Hot Pie has a bakery! Ready Player One has a trailer! The Rook has a TV show! This episode has a final word on butterscotch! And the man in black has a gunslinger following him!
#300 - Don’t Pee in the Gene Pool
Jul 20, 2017 • 40 min
Hey kids, Nnedi Okorafor has an HBO show coming, EW and Tor have LOADS of book recommendations and we love the world created by Ursula K. Le Guin.
#299 - NK Jemisin Says FanFic Makes Good Practice
Jul 13, 2017 • 21 min
It’s windy but in among the breeze, N.K. Jemisin shares wisdom about writing, characters and wrapping up the Broken Earth Trilogy. Plus she accidentally brings up FanFic and talks about why, even though it can be more than practice, it’s really good for…
#298 - Don’t Get Eaten By a Bear
Jul 6, 2017 • 31 min
George R. R. Martin has even more money coming his way, public domain books clean up nice, we love the Locus Award winners, and why Veronica is not allowed to let a bear eat her.
#297 - Haint a Plot Hole if You Ask Me
Jun 22, 2017 • 36 min
New Game of Thrones Trailer! AHHHHH! Levar Burton reading stories on a new podcast! AHHHH! Haint plot hole in the Hum and the Shiver— ahhhhh— maybe not that big a deal?
#296 - A Talk with James S. A. Corey
Jun 15, 2017 • 57 min
We talk to Ty Franck and Daniel Abraham, the authors that make up James S. A. Corey, about coffee, distilled and fermented beverages and making The Expanse a TV show at BayCon 2017.
#295 - Don’t Put Spiders on Your Head
Jun 8, 2017 • 28 min
The Hugo nominees are out and we love them all, we kick off the Hum and the Shiver with music, and a spider that looks like a sorting hat.
#294 - Live at BayCon with Whiskey!
May 31, 2017 • 42 min
We are excited about the winner of this year’s Nebula, the finalists in the Locus awards, and so many TV shows coming from our favorite books. Plus, why Neil Gaiman will read a Cheesecake Factory Menu on stage.
#293 - Post-apocalyptic Protopia (w/ Cory Doctorow)
May 17, 2017 • 30 min
We chat with author Cory Doctorow about his new novel Walkaway, which is post-apocalyptic, but not dystopian. It’s also DRM-free!
#292 - Cozy Space Opera
May 11, 2017 • 30 min
We’ve got more of Game of Thrones TV coming, the Arthur C. Clarke Award nominees, and our thoughts on why The Long Way to a Small Angry Planet is the opposite of epic in the best way possible.
#291 - Falling Backwards into Screenwriting Success
May 3, 2017 • 28 min
We talk with M. R. Carey about his new book The Boy on the Bridge, and how The Girl with All the Gifts became a movie!
#290 - Let’s Get Stuck in Fantasyland!
Apr 27, 2017 • 34 min
Neil Gaiman makes sure the American Gods TV show is prepared for the sequel he hasn’t even written yet, why the Invisible Library doesn’t need to change the world to be awesome, and a plea for regular folks to get back to Fantasyland.
#289 - Love Letter to the Solar System
Apr 20, 2017 • 21 min
Matthew Isaac Sobin tells how his desire to write a beautiful story about the solar system, and how the aggressive encouragement of a friend led to the story of Jonathan, the Last Machine in the Solar System.
#288 - Slow Readers Unite!
Apr 13, 2017 • 32 min
Hugo Nominees are in! The African Speculative Fiction Society nominees are in! People pressuring you to read 200 books a year are in. But us slow readers draw the line.
#287 - You Do Like Your Alternate Londons
Mar 30, 2017 • 46 min
A SciFi book is mysteriously returned after 35 years, at the same time a billionaire suddenly invests in brain implants and a skull begins to talk. Are these events connected somehow? Yes. They’re all discussed in this episode along with Gateway by…
#286 - Secrets of a Powder Mage
Mar 22, 2017 • 25 min
Author Brian McClellan talks with us about his new entry point into the Powder Mage universe, Sins of Empire, why there’s no wrong order to reading his books, and his attitude toward research.
#285 - Why You Should Like Bad Characters
Mar 15, 2017 • 39 min
Sometimes a character does stuff you hate. And that’s OK! We explain why. Plus: great space opera, women writer picks, and some guy named Tom wrote a book too.
#284 - Living Fen’s Dream
Mar 9, 2017 • 24 min
Brittany Curran, who plays Fen on The Magicians, talks about how her childhood love of C.S. Lewis has turned into a modern-day trip to Fillory. Plus, the best way to enjoy Walt Whitman!
#283 - The Madness Begins
Mar 2, 2017 • 35 min
The Nebula Award Nominees are out, the Gateway is in and we’re glad we traveled The Salt Roads. But most of all we’re geared up for the March Madness tournament of fantasy. Get your voting fingers clicking folks!
#282 - Where The Salt Roads Lead
Feb 16, 2017 • 28 min
We check in on our reading of The Salt Roads by Nalo Hopkinson, get some hints on the progress of the next Kingkiller Chronicle, and find another way to track author releases.
#281 - Worldbuilding Through Pinterest
Feb 7, 2017 • 24 min
Bradley Beaulieu is on the show to talk about the second book in “The Song of the Shattered Sands” series called “With Blood Upon the Sand” coming February 7th. We also find out what a Pinterest board can do to build a better world!
#280 - Good Omens for 2018
Feb 2, 2017 • 39 min
Neil Gaiman is running a new TV show and we’re excited! Plus the Arrival folks are making a Larry Niven short story into a show, and indie bookstores are booming! We also kick-off Nalo Hopkinson’s The Salt Roads.
#279 - Myke Cole, Man Hunter
Jan 23, 2017 • 25 min
Person hunter, really! He’s an equal-opportunity ass-kicker. Author and fighter of crimes, Myke Cole, tells us how he got involved in the new CBS show Hunted! And, what Sam Sykes has to do with any of it.
#278 - Don’t Trust Turkey Data
Jan 19, 2017 • 35 min
A hot new approach to a fantasy trilogy, the real drama of rocket scientists involves cake, and why you can’t trust turkeys to rigorously use data to predict future results.
#277 - January No-Beer Problem
Jan 6, 2017 • 34 min
We commend Terry Brooks’ foresight, possibly convince Veronica to watch the Man in the High Castle some more, and give you important information to get the most of The Three-Body Problem by Cixin Liu.
#276 - By Hook or by Rook
Dec 22, 2016 • 48 min
We discuss whether the central plot device (the hook!) of the Rook is a cliche or clever. Plus, how to find the best stories in SciFi and Fantasy and help authors get exposure at the same time.
#275 - Get Hip With the Rook
Dec 7, 2016 • 33 min
We kick off our December book, the Rook by Daniel O’Malley and we are so excited for Lin-Manuel Miranda to team up with Patrick Rothfuss.
#274 - Wrap Up of Futuristic Violence and Fancy Suits by David Wong
Dec 1, 2016 • 20 min
We wrap up our thoughts on the cartoon violence and snappy dialog of David Wong’s dissertation on lawlessness in Tabula Rasa. We think we know what it could be a metaphor for. Whether it is or not is left as an exercise for the reader.
#273 - Han Solo’s Big Sister
Nov 23, 2016 • 37 min
We are optimistic for Dune, excited for The Expanse, and hopeful for Stranger in a Strange Land. But we’re certain of what we want Emilia Clarke to be in the Han Solo movie.
#272 - Best Cats and Dogs of SciFi
Nov 10, 2016 • 31 min
We congratulate Brandon Sanderson and the World Fantasy Award winners and try to calibrate the futuristic violence for you. The fancy suits calibrate themselves.
#271 - Awkward Jinni Conversations
Oct 27, 2016 • 40 min
We discover that some people’s names just don’t work as awards. We’re excited about a site full of fictional timelines. And we ponder troubling jinni paternity questions.
#270 - Be a Cat Burglar for Good!
Oct 13, 2016 • 37 min
We don’t want you to steal cats (not even books, really), just to take home the exhibit from the Museum of Science Fiction. We’ll explain! Plus, you must cast your vote for the classic or the new! Will you vote against Veronica?
#269 - Artisanal Analog Tree-Sourced Reading Material
Sep 29, 2016 • 56 min
We look for authors who satisfy like Scalzi, find out how dirty the new dirty editions of The Magicians are and discuss an ethical question regarding library books.
#268 - “Underrated” is Not a Dirty Word
Sep 14, 2016 • 37 min
We praise the underrated and print books, and we get into the dog-eat-dog world of Fire Upon the Deep!
#267 - We Pick the Best Wizard School
Aug 30, 2016 • 34 min
The Hugos are in, for 2016 and 1941! And although the Thorn of Emberlain is delayed, we understand. We also pick our favorite wizard school and wrap up The Last Wish.
#266 - Are You Reading Too Much?
Aug 17, 2016 • 37 min
This week we dive into our (non-spoilery) thoughts on the Witcher and get excited about a movie based on Ted Chiang’s story and a TV series based on George R. R. Martin’s Wild Cards. But Brad poses a question about how one tells if they’re reading too…
#265 - Zombies and LARPers: The Nerdist Inkshares Winners!
Aug 10, 2016 • 26 min
We talk with Dave Barrett, author of Inkshares book It’s All Fun and Games and Zac Linville author of Inkshares book Welcome to Deadland. One has zombie-like inhabitants based on theme park patrons and the other finds a LARP outing becoming all too real.
#264 - Will the Real Witcher Please Stand Up
Aug 4, 2016 • 33 min
We have an excellent conversation about great character names and revel in the news of rising print book sales. But the big question is, which Witcher is canon?
#263 - When to Judge a Book by its Cover
Jul 26, 2016 • 42 min
We’re excited about American Gods. We have mixed feelings about Time Traders. And we definitely understand why you might have to judge a book by its cover, but there’s a good reason to try not to. Except in one particular case.
#262 - G. Derek Adams Breaks The Rules, And You Win!
Jul 12, 2016 • 33 min
G. Derek Adams, author of Asteroid Made of Dragons, knows his title is over the top. He meant it that way, and it’s part of the genius of his stories. Find out which rules he breaks, why, and how it made for a wonderful cast of characters in a fascinating…
261 #261 - The Restaurant At The End Of The Barnes & Noble
Jul 5, 2016 • 35 min
Looks like your old bookstore is getting into fancy dinners, plus the rise of book-based card games and how Time Traders proves you live in the wrong time.
#260 - Why Young Adult Is For Everyone W Fran Wilde
Jun 28, 2016 • 40 min
Fran Wilde talks to us about Updraft, how she was inspired to create the bone city, and why she doesn’t mind the young adult label but it doesn’t always mean what people say it means.
#259 - The Adventures Of The Giant Space Hedgehog
Jun 22, 2016 • 38 min
American Gods nails the casting, John W. Campbell Award nails the nominees, and we nail the true origin of the world of Updraft as we wrap up this month’s book pick. OK, we’re probably wrong about the hedgehog (but we do wrap up Updraft).
#258 - When To Worry About The Singularity W Ramez Naam!
Jun 14, 2016 • 27 min
Ramez Naam talks about his Nexus trilogy, nanotechnology, and when to worry about AI getting too smart!
#257 - Shakespeare Was A Genre Writer
Jun 7, 2016 • 27 min
You may be surprised to learn Gillian Anderson’s role in American Gods. You may be surprised that China did not previously have official SciFi awards. But you should not be surprised at all to think of Shakespeare as an SFF author.
#256 - Interview With Hardcore Game Of Thrones
Jun 2, 2016 • 34 min
We talk with Jason Greene and Alex Berg from Hardcore Game of Thrones, a show that tells the history of Westeros in the style of Dan Carlin’s Hardcore History.
#255 - Just The One Planet
May 24, 2016 • 37 min
We are excited for a new space opera from John Scalzi, not new but awesome Nebula Award winners, and we get teary-eyed over an A.I. as we wrap up Kim Stanley Robinson’s Aurora.
#254 - Wheel Of Boobies
May 11, 2016 • 35 min
Wheel of Time is getting a TV series and Veronica has one thing (well, more than one thing) that she expects to see. Would that make it the “boob tube?” (Ed. note — Jesus, Tom… c’mon) Meanwhile we discuss how Aurora masterfully balances hard science and…
#253 - A Tale Of Two Styles
Apr 26, 2016 • 45 min
The Hugos are out! We leave the drama to the side for this one and celebrate the novel nominees. But we didn’t waste the drama… we just saved it for our evaluations of TV show and movie-based SFF books! We even brought a little to season our conversation…
#252 - Andrew Mayne’s Magical Writing Secrets
Apr 19, 2016 • 35 min
Magician and TV star Andrew Mayne has managed to become a successful published author. How? Not magic. Well some magic. But magic isn’t required. Plus Tom loves his latest novel Station Breaker.
#251 - How Veronica Tamed Tyrion
Apr 12, 2016 • 29 min
Statistics dub Tyrion the main character of George R. R. Martin’s A Storm of Swords and Veronica got to talk to him! Well, she talked to Peter Dinklage anyway, who plays him on the TV show. She reports back on his handshake and reveals what Arya Stark did…
#250 - Ken Liu Explains Why Silkpunk Is Not What You Think
Apr 5, 2016 • 32 min
Ken Liu, author of The Grace of Kings tells us about the inspiration for his worlds, his domain name, how translation has helped him as a writer, and why silkpunk is a thing (but probably not the thing you’re thinking).
#249 - Secrets Of All The Birds In The Sky W Charlie Jane Anders
Mar 29, 2016 • 43 min
We’re joined by Charlie Jane Anders to wrap up her book, All the Birds in the Sky. Did you know Kevin has a secret history? What anime inspired Ernesto? These things, as well as all the winners of all the awards on this episode.
#248 - The Truth About Vampires w/ Jim McDoniel
Mar 22, 2016 • 26 min
Jim McDoniel, author of An Unattractive Vampire, is not only the second author to get published in the Sword and Laser collection, he’s also a truth-sayer. About vampires. Like how they aren’t sparkly (usually). Return to the vampire roots with him!
#247 - Parents Just Weren’t Understood
Mar 15, 2016 • 31 min
We’re checking in on All The Birds in The Sky by Charlie Jane Anders and why some people were put off by Patrica and Laurence’s parents. Trust us, so were Patricia and Laurence. Also it’s March Madness and we have the hot inside track on the April fantasy…
#246 - The 34 Rules Of Robotics With J - F Dubeau
Mar 8, 2016 • 29 min
We chat with J-F Dubeau, author of The Life Engineered, first book in the Sword and Laser Inkshares collection. Find out whether the thousand year old robots in the book had any real life inspirations and whether they have sex. We’re guessing you’re…
#245 - Terry Pratchett Helps Us Feel Better
Mar 1, 2016 • 36 min
We’re very excited about the debut of our first Sword and Laser Inkshares collection book, The Life Engineered by JF Dubeau. We’re a little bummed that Tom forgot to bring more than water to drink. We’re super-excited about the Nebula Award nominees. And…
#244 - It’s OK To Like Junk Fiction Sometimes
Feb 16, 2016 • 36 min
Sometimes some people just want a story you can take your brain off and enjoy. If that’s not you, keep your rain off my cotton candy. Also an awesome new effort to Kickstart an Ursula K. Leguin documentary and more great books becoming TV shows!
#243 - Hugo Nominations Are Open!
Feb 2, 2016 • 45 min
Yes you can nominate your favorite novels, short stories, TV scripts and— oh look, fancasts! We also discuss the line between inspiration and appropriation regarding Sword of Shannara.
#242 - The Animal In Our Collection
Jan 20, 2016 • 29 min
We congratulate the winners of our Inkshares contest and name the book that will be joining our Sword and Laser collection. Plus, why you shouldn’t be angry at George R. R. Martin and how Catherynne M. Valente’s Radiance is like a Tone Poem.
#241 - A.I. Animal Flesh Carvers
Jan 13, 2016 • 33 min
We talk to three of the leaders in the Inkshares Sword and Laser collection contest. From animal people to lonely AI to epic flesh carvers have they got some stories for you!
#240 - Wish We Were There
Jan 5, 2016 • 21 min
Over the break, we took a little time out of vacation to talk about our holiday reads, from ancient history to Chewbacca. Sigh. No Star Wars spoilers we promise. We’re not there anymore. But we can pretend we are in this episode.
#239 - King Arthur Is A Mary Sue
Dec 22, 2015 • 44 min
We wrap up our thoughts about Arrows of the Queen by Mercedes Lackey. And we discuss why calling a character a “Mary Sue” has become meaningless and impedes constructive conversation.
#238 - W.E.B. Dubois’ 1908 GoT Reference
Dec 8, 2015 • 32 min
A newly-discovered short story from W.E.B. Dubois called “The Princess Steel” seems to anticipate elements of Game of Thrones and Doctor Who. Plus, we kick off the book with the talking horses!
#237 - Charles E. Gannon And Big Idea Books
Dec 1, 2015 • 37 min
Author Chuck Gannon joins us on the show this week to talk about his most recent work in the Caine Riordan series (Raising Caine), as well as helping the government figure out the future as part of SIGMA. This is one busy guy, let me tell you.
#236 - Time Travel Is Frustrating
Nov 24, 2015 • 44 min
We wrap up what people thought about Time and Again by Jack Finney. Some loved the imagery, some got bored, and some thought he was just too hard on New York City.
#235 - The Practical Effects Of Mallory O’Meara
Nov 18, 2015 • 20 min
We interview Mallory O’Meara, producer and screenwriter for Dark Dunes Productions, about Yamasong: March of the Hallows, a movie about an automated girl and tortoise warrior, with puppets, Nathon Fillion’s voice and more. We also discuss her love of…
#234 - We Think We Know How Game Of Thrones Ends
Nov 10, 2015 • 40 min
George R R Martin will only say that Game of Thrones will end in a bittersweet way. We’re pretty sure we know what that means. Also Chinese Nebula Award winners and our first impressions of Time and Again by Jack Finney.
233: Publishing Inside And Out, With Jaym Gates (Con-Volution 2015)
Nov 3, 2015 • 44 min
At Con-Volution 2015 we sat down with author/podcaster/publicist Jaym Gates and talked about her unique perspective on publishing from within and without.
S&L Podcast - #232 - Is This Book A Traitor To Its Genre?
Oct 27, 2015 • 41 min
We wrap up our October book pick, The Traitor Baru Cormorant. Some people find the hero less than heroic. Some people find the genre less than fantasy. So why did Tom like it so much? Is HE a traitor? Also a short story vending machine and why we’re so…
S&L Podcast - #231 - Can An Author Spoil Herself
Oct 20, 2015 • 33 min
We have a delightful conversation with Catherynne M. Valente about decopunk, book awards, and why she fears spoiling herself about her own stories while she’s writing them. Her decopunk book Radiance is out now! Our show is currently entirely funded by…
S&L Podcast - #230 - Reading Makes You A Better Person, Says Science
Oct 14, 2015 • 29 min
We cheer for Patrick Rothfuss winning the Hollywood game, jeer a little at Spielberg refusing to put a Delorean in the Ready Player One movie and peruse with careful academic curiosity a study showing the increase in empathy caused by reading.
S&L Podcast Rewind: ‘The Martian Influx’ Redux
Oct 6, 2015 • 34 min
With the huge success of the film adaptation this month, we thought it would be fun to travel back in time to our interview with The Martian author Andy Weir and Influx author Daniel Suarez.
S&L Podcast - #229 - Taylor Swift Is A Fremen
Sep 30, 2015 • 50 min
We wrap up A Canticle for Leibowitz and explore all its science and religion feels. Also we welcome a new Expanse series cover, a new Gaiman baby and we discover why Taylor Swift IS the Kwisatz Haderach.
S&L Podcast - #228 - Is Present Tense For Baby Brains?
Sep 16, 2015 • 32 min
This week, things really go nuts when Veronica realizes that she likes Tom’s book pick more than Tom does, which causes Tom to question everything he has ever known. Meanwhile, over on Goodreads, Thane questions whether present tense is the bane of genre…
S&L Podcast - #227 - Cherie Priest And The Caverns Of Inspiration
Sep 10, 2015 • 54 min
This weekend at DragonCon 2015 in Atlanta, we had the great fortune of chatting with Cherie Priest for an hour in front a live audience of Sword & Laser enthusiasts! Listen in to hear Cherie’s rise from goth to glorious, the proper way to distinguish…
S&L Podcast - #226 - Embrace The Manic Pixie Dream Witch
Aug 27, 2015 • 45 min
We’re happy for the Hugos, sad for the last Terry Pratchett novel, and J.R.R. Tolkien has a new book. Plus, we wrap up Uprooted by Naomi Novik and make our peace with a trope. Full show notes:…
S&L Podcast - #225 - Why You Should Welcome The Robots
Aug 6, 2015 • 58 min
We chat with J-F Dubeau, author of The Life Engineered about why we should keep calm and build more robots. Also the good news of more Game of Thrones coming to TV thrilled the live audience at Nerdtacular 2015 as did our surprise host-swap! And thanks to…
S&L Podcast - #224 - Scott Sigler Keeps Us Alive!
Jul 31, 2015 • 31 min
Scott Sigler’s Alive is out, and even though he didn’t mean it as Young Adult fiction it’s turned out that way. And even though he didn’t mean it to be Science Fiction, it’s turned out that way too! Find out why this all happened and why he’s happy with…
S&L Podcast - #223 - Why Station Eleven Is Horror AND Science Fiction
Jul 24, 2015 • 40 min
This week we congratulate several more authors on TV deals, one author on getting to write more movie books, and another author on having too many potential movie deals. We also come to the conclusion that Station Eleven by Emily St. John Mandel is all…
S&L Podcast - #222 - Neil Gaiman Writes All The Things
Jul 9, 2015 • 35 min
We have an eyewitness report from the ALA conference in San Francisco, our initial thoughts on Station Eleven by Emily St. John Mandel, and Neil Gaiman will write some episodes for the American Gods TV series. Thank American Gods!
S&L Podcast - #221 - From Authors To Hollywood Moguls!
Jun 25, 2015 • 41 min
Ellen DeGeneres is apparently interested in adapting Naomi Novik’s Uprooted as a film. But, we all know there’s a long road from “interest” to “released.” Just ask Neil Gaiman. The good news is Gaiman’s American Gods is finally green-lit for TV! So…
S&L Podcast - #220 - Why The Healer Deserves To Be A Hero
Jun 18, 2015 • 20 min
We talk with author Beth Cato, author of The Clockwork Dagger, about why healers are never the hero in genre fiction and how she decided to change that. We also press her for baked brie recipes and discover how the Foo Fighters helped shape Octavia…
S&L Podcast - #219 - We Make People Win Nebula Awards. Maybe.
Jun 11, 2015 • 31 min
First off we now have a 100% record picking Nebula-award winning books for the club. That’s 100% of the last two years. So take note Nebula-wanters! Also we’re very excited about a new series from University of Illinois Press called the Masters of Science…
S&L Podcast - #218 - Why There’s No Such Thing As Writer’s Block
Jun 4, 2015 • 37 min
Peter Orullian wears many hats. He is an author, musician, and has worked for many years at Microsoft on the XBox team. Today we talk about his series The Vault of Heaven, get the scoop on his all-time favorite music, and hear why Peter believes there is…
S&L Podcast - #217 - Apply John Scalzi Directly To Forehead
May 28, 2015 • 41 min
We congratulate John Scalzi on his book deal (while Veronica teases about his Lock In Sequel’s title), applaud Ernest Cline’s choice of audiobook narrator and have polar opposite opinions about Leigh Brackett’s “Sword of Rhiannon.”
S&L Podcast - #216 - Why Genres Don’t Matter On The Internet
May 20, 2015 • 35 min
We talk with Rachel Aaron about why she doesn’t worry about genre anymore and how she had to fight the siren song of Warcraft to become a professional writer.
S&L Podcast - #215 - Is The Magician S Quentin Too Handsome
May 14, 2015 • 35 min
Everything you’ve ever read seems to be coming to TV. Plus Veronica tries to uncover Tom’s secret political conspiracy, while Tom changes Veronica’s opinion of 1940s era swashbuckling.
S&L Podcast - #214 - Discworld’s Inner Rage
Apr 30, 2015 • 46 min
Rucksack Universe Author and Pratchett Enthusiast, Anthony St. Clair joins us to wrap up our reading of Terry Pratchett’s Wyrd Sisters. Is Granny Weatherwax a conduit for Pratchett’s righteous anger? Does Tom live next to Nanny Ogg? All these mysteries…
S&L Podcast - #213 - Our Thoughts On The Hugos
Apr 16, 2015 • 36 min
We’re excited and fearful about a new chapter from George R.R. Martin’s Winds of Winter, we’re hopeful about new books from John Scalzi and Ann Leckie and we’re just a little wistful and/or angry about the Hugos.
S&L Podcast - #212 - Do You Have The Right To Delete Swear Words
Apr 2, 2015 • 47 min
We give our last thoughts on The Goblin Emperor, kick of our April pick, Wyrd Sisters by Terry Pratchett and discuss why some author names are bigger than their titles. But what really gets this episode going is the debate about whether a reader has the…
S&L Podcast - #211 - Why Peter V. Brett Empathizes With George RR Martin
Mar 26, 2015 • 33 min
We talk with Peter V. Brett about his new book, cool tattoos and the last enjoyable book he read. The Skull Throne, 4th in the Demon Cycle series, comes out March 31, 2015.
BUMPERX - Who Is Veronica Belmont
Mar 19, 2015 • 0 min
Created by Scott Johnson!
S&L Podcast - #210 - Are You The Goblin Emperor?
Mar 19, 2015 • 38 min
We bid adieu to Terry Pratchett and commemorate him with one more book pick next month. We cheer for Chuck Wendig being picked for the next Star Wars novel. And we wonder if we are too much like the Goblin Emperor. Are you?
S&L Podcast - #209 - The Secret To Inventing Your Own Language
Mar 12, 2015 • 40 min
Sarah Monette, a.k.a. Katherine Addison, tells us why you’re all right about the Goblin Emperor, why the wizards in the book are so stubborn about using magic, and shares tips for inventing a language.
S&L Podcast - #208 - Who Will Win This Year’s Nebula
Mar 4, 2015 • 35 min
So much good news! Some of our favorite stories are becoming movies and TV shows and we even have good news of a popular indie author getting picked up by Tor. And we even make a stab at predicting the Nebula winner. Yet controversy rages in the…
S&L Podcast - #207 - Crowdfunding An Abomination With Gary Whitta!
Feb 25, 2015 • 44 min
Gary Whitta is an award-winning screenwriter who wrote The Book of Eli and worked on the first Star Wars standalone film. So when he had an idea for a dark historical fantasy story he wrote a book. Why? We ask him that, about successfully crowdfunding his…
S&L Podcast - #206 - How Tyrion Could Die
Feb 18, 2015 • 43 min
We have a whole Wheel of Time pilot mystery to solve and then on top of it George RR Martin says any character in the Game of Thrones series could be killed even if they’re safe in the book. WHAT?! Hands off the Imp! Also we explore the mystery of why Tom…
S&L Podcast - #205 - Brian McClellan Grows His Own Spaghetti Sauce
Feb 11, 2015 • 30 min
When you rule the world of powder mages you can do what you want. Brian McClellan wields his powder for good. In addition to delivering us the complete Powder Mage trilogy with the third book Autumn Republic, Brian is going to bring us a second trilogy in…
S&L Podcast - #204 - Annihilation Is Not The End
Feb 4, 2015 • 40 min
Veronica REALLY wanted to make the title of this episode “Tom Merritt is a sexist pig.” But Tom doesn’t need that kind of grief. And besides he has promised to read even more female SciFi/Fantasy authors going forward. But if you want to hear Veronica…
S&L Podcast - #203 - Myke Cole’s Secret Unicorn
Jan 28, 2015 • 36 min
We welcome back the amazing Myke Cole to talk about how he finds time to write great books, fight crime, and decorate his apartment with even more books. We also pressure him into a startling revelation about unicorns. And of course, talk to him about his…
S&L Podcast - #202 - Ready Player Two
Jan 21, 2015 • 44 min
We wrap up The Sparrow. We loved it and it made us sad. We’re also blown away at the quality of books being made into TV shows. Well, only a pilot and a trailer but so far so good. But should you risk reading a book and seeing a movie or TV show too?…
S&L Podcast - #201 - Don’t Fear The Roomba
Jan 13, 2015 • 36 min
Author and robotics engineer Daniel H. Wilson chats with us about his new story/app called Mayday: Deep Space about a person trapped on a ship full of monsters. Only you can help him survive! But of course we have to ask Daniel when the robots will rise…
S&L Podcast - #200 - Best Books Of 2014
Jan 5, 2015 • 34 min
Well we’re here to kick off the new year AND celebrate our 200th episode so we gathered drinks and cheer and your favorite books of 2014 as well as our own and a few others. You’ll never guess which one everybody picked! That’s not true. You’ll totally…
S&L Podcast - #199 - Integrity For Sale
Dec 16, 2014 • 41 min
This week we almost wrap up The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern, discuss the intricacies of eBook DRM and try to decide just how high a price our integrity would fetch. We also wonder the same about Neal Stephenson and Steven Hawking. Join us, won’t you?
S&L Podcast - #198 - The Most Hated Phrases In SciFi
Dec 9, 2014 • 40 min
This week we’re busy. We congratulate the winners of several year-end awards. We kick off our December book pick, The Night Circus, a beautiful novel by Erin Morgenstern. And we dive into some of the most wretched and hated terms and phrases in the…
S&L Podcast - #197 - Veronica Is A Cannibal
Nov 25, 2014 • 48 min
We sing the praises of Ursula K. Leguin, marvel at the casting of HBO’s Westworld, announce our December book pick and wrap up Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep by Philip K. Dick. Also, Veronica admits she would eat people. Ed. note: I would eat people…
S&L Podcast - #196 - Would Vegetarians Eat Electric Meat
Nov 11, 2014 • 41 min
We have some awesome World Fantasy winners to talk about, some exciting casting news for The Magicians and The Expanse, but it really gets interesting when our “Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep” check-in turns into an ethics of meat-eating discussion.
S&L Podcast - #195 - Why It’s OK To Hate My Favorite Book
Oct 30, 2014 • 55 min
It’s a jam-packed episode this week with great news for Ann Leckie and Andy Weir, our wrap-up of Alif the Unseen, Kickoff of Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep and the determination that it’s OK to hate the book I love.
S&L Podcast - #194 - Delilah S. Dawson: Why Whimsydark Rules
Oct 21, 2014 • 28 min
We had a lovely time chatting with author Delilah Dawson about her struggles with Ikea furniture, brilliance on Twitter and the coining of Whimsydark. There’s also a fair amount about blud and humans.
S&L Podcast - #193 - Kiss From A Queen (on The Face)
Oct 14, 2014 • 31 min
In Neil Gaiman’s new book, The Sleeper and the Spindle, Sleeping Beauty gets woken by a Queen’s kiss. And there’s pictures so it did happen. Fictionally speaking. We also discuss The Steel Remains by Richard K. Morgan, and find out people are pleasantly…
S&L Podcast - #192 - Sexual Experiences With Robert Jackson Bennett
Oct 7, 2014 • 26 min
Robert Jackson Bennett joins us on the show this week to talk about his new book, City of Stairs! The city of Bulikov once wielded the powers of the gods to conquer the world, enslaving and brutalizing millions—until its divine protectors were killed. Now…
S&L Podcast - #191 - Tom Merritt, Kindle Hater
Sep 30, 2014 • 49 min
From excitement about a new book in the Old Man’s War series, to a rising demand for SciFi, things are looking up on the laser side. We also find out that Tom doesn’t use a Kindle and Veronica’s opinion on spiders.
S&L Podcast - #190 - Timothy Zahn Minds Your Soul
Sep 23, 2014 • 16 min
We chat with Timothy Zahn about his new book Soulminder. What happens when you can store a person’s life essence separate from their body? And yes we get in a little talk about Star Wars and the prospects for Grand Admiral Thrawn and Jaina Solo too.
S&L Podcast - #189 - Literary Virginity, Literally
Sep 17, 2014 • 40 min
We dig into the first four stories from Ted Chiang’s Stories of Your Life and Others, and boy do we learn a lot about ourselves and others. Plus you’ll want to take your vitamins since Margaret Atwood’s latest novel won’t be available to read for 100…
S&L Podcast - #188 - It’s A Dragon Con Plex
Sep 2, 2014 • 81 min
We talk with Naomi Novik, fanfic writer, Ruby on Rails coder and author of the Temeraire series, from DragonCon 2014 in Atlanta! Then, we wrap up Name of the Wind by Patrick Rothfuss.
S&L Podcast - #187 - How To Win A Hugo
Aug 19, 2014 • 42 min
We congratulate all the winners of the Hugos and chat with Aidan Moher about how he took home the best fanzine Hugo for A Dribble of Ink. Veronica milks him for info on how to win, and then we learn a way you can help more people become better writers and…
S&L Podcast - #186 - The Name Of The Wind Is Dave
Aug 5, 2014 • 46 min
Almost every book is becoming a TV show or movie. Also we tell you how to be a part of a living creation of Alice in Wonderland and we kick off Patrick Rothfuss’s Name of the Wind.
S&L Podcast - #185 - Traveling By Bubble!
Aug 5, 2014 • 28 min
We chat with Steven Paul Leiva, author of Traveling in Space and his audiobook narrator Jeff Cannata, about aliens, the beauty of language and avoiding death.
S&L Podcast - #184 - Threeways To Save Humanity
Jul 22, 2014 • 51 min
There’s so much you can do with us this week, including bringing Neil Gaiman to the stage, discovering 20th century high fantasy, and saving humanity. And how we can save humanity makes Tom blush.
S&L Podcast - #183 - The Damon Inside Me
Jul 8, 2014 • 40 min
We ponder on Matt Damon’s role in The Martian, why we love to hate villains, and the role of philosophy and ideology in Octavia Butler’s Dawn. Join us, before Veronica falls into the hellmouth.
S&L Podcast - #182 - Ken Liu Translates Success
Jul 1, 2014 • 40 min
Ken Liu’s short story “The Paper Menagerie” swept the Nebula, Hugo, and World Fantasy Awards. His short story, “Mono no aware” won the 2013 Hugo, and his novella “The Man Who Ended History: A Documentary” was also nominated for a Hugo. We caught up with…
S&L Podcast - #181 - The Promise Of More Blood
Jun 24, 2014 • 51 min
We break down our June book pick, Promise of Blood by Brian McClellan, and find out why it’s actually four or five books and its gods are not what they seem. Also we set up our July pick from Octavia Butler and decide whether warp speed is actually coming…
S&L Podcast - #180 - Emily Jiang: Cinderella, Secret Agent
Jun 17, 2014 • 44 min
We talk to Emily Jiang at the Nebula Awards about her book Summoning the Phoenix, her foray into children’s books and what she has planned for a full novel. Hint, it involves magic and spies.
S&L Podcast - #179 - Flintpunk And Geekomancy
Jun 10, 2014 • 66 min
Would you like to be in a George R. R. Martin Book? Got $20K? Don’t mind being killed? Good. You can help wolves. Also we give our first impressions of Brian McClellan’s The Promise of Blood and talk Geekomancy with Michael Underwood.
S&L Podcast - #178 - David Weber Talks Honor At BayCon 2014
Jun 7, 2014 • 77 min
David Weber joins Tom Merritt at BayCon to talk about the origins of his writing, the journey of Honor Harrington and how he relies on his fans.
S&L Podcast - #177 - A Chat with Grand Master Delany
Jun 3, 2014 • 31 min
We intersect with Mr. Samuel R. Delany at the Nebula Awards to talk about his writings, old and new, and the role of science fiction, plus more stimulating conversation.
S&L Podcast - #176 - Martians And Panda Pants
May 27, 2014 • 49 min
Veronica is back from China to regale us tales of motorboating pandas, but first we announce our June book pick and wrap-up The Martian by Andy Weir. Is it as scientifically accurate as so many say? We get an aerospace engineer’s perspective.
S&L Podcast - #175 Ann Leckie Wins it All
May 20, 2014 • 22 min
We chat with Ann Leckie mere hours before she wins a Nebula award, about what it’s like to get so many awards, and what’s coming next for fans of her award-winning novel, Ancillary Justice.
S&L Video: Author Spotlight -N. K. Jemisin
May 8, 2014 • 34 min
N. K. Jemisin writes fiction that reads like history in the best way. But could it also be romance? We ask N. K. Jemisin that and how she’s able to keep a day job and still write amazing fiction. We also find out what trope she’d like to give a rest. It’s…
S&L Author Spotlight - Jim. C. Hines
May 1, 2014 • 23 min
Haven’t you wondered how orcs and goblins and other monsters see the world? Do they feel unfairly vilified? Jim C. Hines can help you walk a mile in their— scaly misshapen feet. Find out why the author of the Goblin Series finds book-cover poses…
S&L Podcast - #174 - A Wrap - Up Of Earthsea
Apr 30, 2014 • 27 min
Veronica is traveling in China, so we pre-recorded this episode and took the opportunity to properly wrap-up A Wizard of Earthsea by Ursula K. Leguin. We also kick off the rest of The Martian and promise to be better about these sorts of things once…
S&L Podcast - #173 - JJ, Destroyer Of Canons
Apr 30, 2014 • 51 min
We’re very excited to have Bryan Benson on the show today, who backed our Kickstarter for season 2 of video, and got to pick this month’s book. He’s a game designer, author and all around great guy. Plus, he helped us to realize that JJ Abrams has become…
S&L Author Spotlight - Elizabeth Bear
Apr 24, 2014 • 22 min
What kind of mind can write about a faerie war in Shakespearian England and Lovecraftian Nightmares in depression-era Maine? The kind of mind that can also win a Campbell award for best new writer and then go on to notch a couple Hugos. That’s the kind of…
172 S&L Podcast - #172 - The Invention Of BeerPunk
Apr 23, 2014 • 26 min
Travel fantasy writer Anthony St. Clair (Home Sweet Road, Martini Destiny) is on the forefront of a new genre involving beer and travel, plus he reveals the secret for planning a book with one word.
S&L Author Spotlight - Kevin Hearne
Apr 17, 2014 • 22 min
Kevin Hearne was an English teacher who put up with rejection from twenty three agents and five publishers before he finally prevailed. Thank goodness he did! We would have never been able to meet Oberon! Oh, and Atticus too, of course. We ask Kevin many…
S&L Podcast - #171 - The Martian Influx
Apr 15, 2014 • 130 min
We’re very excited that James S. A. Corey’s ‘The Expanse’ is being made into a TV series! PLUS we sat down to chat with Andy Weir and Daniel Suarez. We learn you shouldn’t go for a publisher, but go for an audience, and why you should NOT tell your…
S&L Author Spotlight - Brent Weeks
Apr 11, 2014 • 27 min
How did Brent Weeks get from Montana to writing novels on napkins to becoming the bestselling author of the Lightbringer Series? We’ll ask him about that, find out his favorite word and whether he still has those napkins.
170 S&L Podcast - #170 - The Lives Of Wesley Chu
Apr 6, 2014 • 37 min
Wes Chu has had many interesting (and varied) careers, but we’re happy that he’s focused on the fascinating tales of Tao. In this Google hangout, we talk about the upcoming finale to the series, where he’s taking the story next, and answer your questions!
S&L Author Spotlight - Chuck Wendig
Apr 3, 2014 • 22 min
Chuck Wendig has a reputation for cursing. He also has a reputation for being a badass writer of amazing characters in inventive situations, across novels, comics and movies. He also invented cornpunk. Oh wait, he ALSO writes one of the best guides for…
169 S&L Podcast - #169 - Sneaking Peeks And Swapping Sleeves
Apr 1, 2014 • 46 min
From a debate on whether we should read early chapters from George R.R. Martin’s “Winds of Winter” to the usefulness of Asimov’s three laws, to our wrap-up of Altered Carbon, this is an episode that should contain a lot of wisdom. Who knows? It might!
S&L Video: Author Spotlight - Alastair Reynolds
Mar 27, 2014 • 27 min
This week you’ll learn how Alastair Reynolds went from Cornwall to a doctorate in astronomy, to pushing ice across the vastness of space. How much do current scientific advances influence him? Does he feel a kinship with Mass Effect? What order should you…
168 S&L Podcast - #168 - Promises Of Blood And Old Timey Pipes
Mar 25, 2014 • 25 min
We had a lovely time chatting with Brian McClellan, author of the Powder Mage trilogy. He answers a lot of questions about including history in novels, snorting gunpowder, smoking old-timey pipes while listening to flute music, and making cakes for Sam…
S&L Author Spotlight - Rachel Swirsky
Mar 20, 2014 • 19 min
Have you been ignoring short stories? You’re missing out! And Rachel Swirsky is one of the best authors to prove it. Find out how this award-winning author and podcaster got into writing and poetry too!
S&L Podcast - #167 - Spitcoin
Mar 19, 2014 • 44 min
We evaluate George R. R. Martin’s plans to stay ahead of the HBO show, look forward to spaceships returning to SyFy, congratulate Arthur C. Clarke Award finalists and ponder the disgusting need for spit as a payment method in Richard K. Morgan’s “Altered…
S&L Podcast - #166 - The Prolific Mr. Adam Christopher
Mar 15, 2014 • 31 min
Sorry for the late podcast, everyone! I took a nasty tumble this week and broke my foot and wrist, so everything kind of shut down for a bit! But we’re back, and so is Adam Christopher! We talk about the recently released Hang Wire, and upcoming The…
S&L Author Spotlight - Mary Robinette Kowal
Mar 13, 2014 • 27 min
How do you become an award-winning puppeteer AND award-winning writer AND a audiobook narrator? Easy. Be Mary Robinette Kowal. We ask the author of Without a Summer and Valour and Vanity how she fits in all those things and still has time to convincingly…
S&L Author Spotlight - Anne Leonard
Mar 6, 2014 • 18 min
Anne Leonard’s first book JUST came out. Congrats Anne! Moth and Spark is about a Prince who has been chosen to free dragons from bondage to the Empire, but nobody’s exactly sure how he should do it, not even their riders. He meets a doctor’s daughter who…
S&L Podcast - #165 - SciFi Is Finally Literature!
Mar 4, 2014 • 40 min
We kick off our March book pick, Altered Carbon by Richard K. Morgan, ponder the brief career of Jonathan Ross as LonCon MC, and discover that at least Houghton Mifflin thinks SciFi is lit.
S&L Author Spotlight - Max Gladstone
Feb 27, 2014 • 20 min
It’s our author guide to Max Gladstone! If you want an author who knows how to work the financial crisis into epic fantasy and is handy with a sword, Max is your man. We also get the final word on a showdown between him and Scott Lynch. You won’t believe…
S&L Podcast - #164 - Bill Gourgey’s POST - Post - Apocalyptic World
Feb 25, 2014 • 30 min
We chat with Bill Gourgey, who’s Glide Trilogy does not settle for a run-of-the-mill post-apocalyptic world. What happens AFTER the post-apocalyptic dust settles!? We also find out how a tech analyst ends up writing genre novels and poetry. You won’t…
S&L: Author Spotlight - Hugh Howey
Feb 20, 2014 • 28 min
We’re back!!! Welcome back to the space castle, everybody! HUGE thanks to our Kickstarter supporters for making this possible. In our first episode of Season 2, we talk to Wool Omnibus author Hugh Howey. Find out how not to get shoved outside and how…
S&L Podcast - #163 - Hugh Howey Hullabaloo
Feb 18, 2014 • 52 min
Hugh Howey caused quite a stir with his findings about independent authors, but what does it mean for us readers? We also talk about the Wizard of Earthsea feminism implications and have an exciting election for the March book pick! There is a gavel…
S&L Podcast - #162 - Gregory A. Wilson’s Graphic Fallen Angels
Feb 11, 2014 • 26 min
We chat with Gregory A. Wilson, author of The Third Sign, about his newest novel Icarus and the graphic novel based on it that he and artist Matt Slay are working on. It’s about a being who falls from the sky to save a world from tyranny. We also find out…
S&L Podcast - #161 - What Harry Potter Stole From Earthsea
Feb 4, 2014 • 41 min
This time around we’re kicking off our February book pick, A Wizard of Earthsea, by Ursula K. Le Guin. If you’re looking for the first tale a of a boy who attends a school of wizardry, we’ve got the goods, as well as what Ms. Le Guin, who wrote her book…
Sky sings Dresden Files!
Jan 21, 2014 • 2 min
At our meetup at Borderlands Book in San Francisco, we were treated to a wonderful song about the first three Dresden Files books by Sky Corbelli!
S&L Podcast - #160 - Scully Writes A Book, Ringo Is A God
Jan 20, 2014 • 44 min
We’ve got some awesome news about new books from Peter F. Hamilton, Richard Morgan, Joe Abercrombie and Gillian Anderson. Plus we wrap up our January book, The Einstein Intersection.
S&L Podcast - #159 - Ian Tregillis On Angels, Superpowers, And Deathmatches
Jan 14, 2014 • 30 min
We have a chance to chat with the fabulous Ian Tregillis, author of the Milkweed Triptych and Something More Than Night. He alludes to his secret ‘Clakkers” project, explains how to make an angel talk like a shamus, and reveals Gretel’s secret Reagan baby.
S&L Podcast - #158 - Read A Book, Change Your Brain — It’s Science!
Jan 7, 2014 • 35 min
It’s our first episode after New Year’s and we’re still recovering. Thank goodness Neil Gaiman, the Wertzone and Stephen Chow are here to perk us up. Plus we kick off our January book, The Einstein Intersection by Samuel R. Delany.…
S&L Podcast - #157 - Marie Brennan’s Fantasy Brings The Science To Fiction
Dec 31, 2013 • 37 min
We chat with Marie Brennan about her historical fiction her fictionalized history and all kinds of matters relating to anthropology, ethnography, archaeology and natural history. And dragons. Plus get a peek at how much glee she takes in chopping off…
S&L Podcast - #156 - Wrapping Up Dragons!
Dec 23, 2013 • 37 min
It’s a no-holds barred episode where Tom and Veronica reveal their most horrible secrets. Happy Christmas! Also good news from Scott Lynch, slightly bad news from Charles Stross, and the book character you want on your side in a bar fight.
S&L Podcast - #155 - Why Sam Sykes Is For Sharks And The Alliance
Dec 17, 2013 • 41 min
We had a really good time chatting with Sam Sykes, author of the Aeon’s Gate series. Among other things, we learned what a flying shark is good for, why he left the Horde, what a “stealfie” is, and how Sam keeps his daily threat-making to a minimum. Plus…
S&L Podcast - #154 - A Natural History Of Dragons
Dec 10, 2013 • 38 min
It’s a very dragon-filled episode, as we kick off our December pick, A Natural History of Dragons: A Memoir by Lady Trent, actually by Marie Brennan. Also Temeraire. And Paul and Storm steal our idea but we decide we like them anyway.…
S&L Podcast - #153 - Peter V. Brett Is The Dark David Hasselhoff Of Fantasy
Dec 3, 2013 • 41 min
We talk with Peter V. Brett about his Demon Cycle books, the grim world of dark fantasy, his old HP iPaq and why he’s so big in Germany. To get in…