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Tell Us About Your Favorite SF/F Podcasts

Hi there!  So, I am totally stealing this idea from both John Scalzi and Chuck Wendig, and changing it up a little for SF Signal.

I want to know which podcasts out there you like and why.  Please stick to Genre stuff.  Leave your thoughts in the comments, along with a link to the podcast (I suggest 1 per comment if you don’t want the moderation bot to hold you in purgatory).  I plan to do something with these for the SF Signal podcast, so pile on people, and promote those podcasts!

About Patrick Hester (527 Articles)
Patrick Hester is a writer, blogger, podcasting dude, Denver transplant and all around Functional Nerd. Don't hate him cuz he has a cool hat.

31 Comments on Tell Us About Your Favorite SF/F Podcasts

  1. Where to begin? There’s so many good genre related ones. I’ll leave it to someone else to jump on the Escape Artists or District of Wonders podcasts…although they’re all excellent…and instead I’ll point out something a little more obscure (at least to me, until recently). Right now, I’m grooving to the Hypnobobs Podcast, hosted by the quirky and distinct Jim Moon. It’s more horror than science fiction, but Mr. Moon is a certified nerd of the first order and his show is a thoroughly enjoyable mixture of classic genre fiction from the likes of H.P. Lovecraft and E.F. Benson, and lengthy explorations into genre history, such as his guide to Judge Dredd, or his history of the werewolf, or the episode I’m currently enjoying, a history of the Fighting Fantasy gamebooks. Each episode is wonderfully odd and worth a listen.

    On a similar, but much more specific note, I’d also like to mention of my other recent favorites, “The Double Shadow” (, dedicated to presenting and analyzing the works of Clark Ashton Smith. Hosts Phil, Ruth and Tim bring a learned yet entertaining perspective to a much overlooked writer. I think they deserve a lot of credit for helping along the weird fiction revival, and for having the courage to attempt to pronounce some of those odd place names in his writing.

  2. The ones rarely covered here: Sffaudio, A Good Story is Hard to Find (sometimes sff), Sfbrp (sf book review podcast), Incomparable.

  3. So many podcasts, so little time…

    Incomparable, Squeecast, Coode Street, Double Shadow, Podcast for the Curious, H.P. Lovecraft Literary Podcast, H.P. Lovecraft Live Podcast, Adventures in Sci-Fi Publishing, Babylon 5 Podcast, Beware the Hairy Mango, Beneath Ceaseless Skies, Clarkesworld, Escape Pod, PodCastle, Pseudopod, Geek Life, Geek Week from BoingBoing, ***Dave Does the Comics, Geek’s Guide to the Galaxy, I Should Be Writing, If You’re Just Joining Us, Writing Excuses, Ken and Robin Talk About Stuff, Lightspeed, Spider on the Web, The Fantastic World of Edgar Rice Burroughs, Tolkien Professor, We’re Alive…and I’m sure I’m forgetting a couple.

  4. Aside from SF Signal and Functional Nerds… The Fringe Podcast, I Should Be Writing, Writing Excuses, Adventures in SciFi Publishing, Rationally Speaking (Massimo is actually a nerd). I used to listen to a Doctor Who podcast but haven’t for a while (even though I’m a massive Who fan ((my heart will always belong to the Tenth Doctor)) ), Geek’s Guide to the Galaxy, and sometimes a few others.

  5. Two podcasts I am jealous of for their ingenuity are The Roundtable Podcast and Speculate!. Roundtable has two kinds of shows: 20 minutes with…, which gives me the chat on a writer’s gifts (the craft) and journey w/o the rambling you’ll find common on other shows; and the showcase episode, which uses the guest host/expert from the 20 Minutes with show to help an aspiring author brainstorm a story idea. I am surprised at how often advice for their story helps my own. The caliber of advice as well as prestige of their guest hosts make this one of my favorites.

    Speculate! provides experienced writers as hosts, multiple episodes per book discussed and a high quality of guests. I have listened to all of their episodes (60+) and found them all to be top notch. I really enjoy the depth of their discussion into craft, and how the interview is its own episode. I can’t wait to listen to their interview with Joe Abercrombie.

  6. (Mine are all *about* SF/F, not sources of):
    The ScaperChronicles (Farscape podcast), Sword&Laser, The Two Minute Time Lord, The Forcecast, Transporter Room 3.

  7. Adventures in Scifi Publishing
    If You’re Just Joining Us
    The Functional Nerds
    I Should Be Writing
    The Coode Street Podcast
    SF Squeecast
    Geek’s Guide to the Galaxy
    Writing Excuses

  8. Shameless plug: For those of you that speak Spanish, may I recommend VerdHugos Podcast ( the best (and only) podcast in Spanish devoted to SF&F literature?

    Other than that, I love the SF Signal podcast (of course) and I really enjoyed the SF Crossing the Gulf devoted to Greg Egan.

    • I don’t really speak Spanish, but I tried to listen to some of the first few episodes anyway. Understanding was tantalizingly close at times.

      • Oh, thanks 🙂

        I wish there was something we could do to help you understand, but I’m afraid our spoken English is not very good and I haven’t heard of a “Google Translate” for podcasts :/

        • Don’t worry about it. I picked up the little Spanish I know by diffusion. And it is probably a good sign for the quality of the podcast that I understood as much as I did. And as long as you were discussing things I was familiar with my limited exposure and vocabulary was only a small problem.

  9. Writing Excuses – I’ve learned so much and laughed so hard from those 15 minute bursts. I have the April Fool’s episode permanently stationed on my iPod for when I’m stuck and need a laughing kick.

    Lightspeed and Escape Pod – Best production plus story quality, especially Lightspeed. It’s like a mini audiobook a week.

    Functional Nerds – I love the laid back atmosphere and that authors are interviewed but the talk isn’t strictly about writing.

    Adventures in SciFi Publishing – Really great advice and discussion especially on the business end of publishing.

  10. SF Squeecast
    Roundtable Podcast
    Functional Nerds
    Escape Pod and Podcastle
    I should be writing
    Writing Excuses
    Beware the Hairy Mango
    Coode Street Podcast
    Ken and Robin Talk about Stuff

    There are others, including one I probably can’t name since I’m technically a co-host on it. (conflict of interest).

  11. Cast of Wonders, the YA fantasy/SF podcast from the people who brought you Cast Macabre. If you think “appropriate for young adults” means “suitable only for young adults,” then you’re missing all the fun…

  12. I could only locate two podcasts of an SF nature in my large listening list, but they’re cherce and haven’t been mentioned yet.

    The Thrilling Adventure Hour runs new serialized stories in the style of old time radio, featuring *real* *live* voice actors. Not all are genre, but most are, like the long-running “Sparks Nevada: Marshal on Mars”

    Curiously, I was led to the Nerdist Writer’s Podcast because its creator, Ben Blacker, is one of the writers for The Thrilling Adventure Hour. Every episode they interview a panel of (primarily) genre television writers.

    I’ll go ahead and also mention The Deuce Project, the only podcast of SF music of which I’m aware.

  13. Geek’s Guide to the Galaxy – They always seem very well organized and researched for each of their author interviews, which tends to get them great answers in return. I’ve been very lured into reading books just based on how interesting the author is.

    Sword and Laser Podcast – I like that they focus on their book club while also talking about the literary scene in general. It’s fun to hear their take on the books, regardless of whether or not I’ve read them.

    • I agree with these two (Geek’s Guide and Sword/Laser). Good banter, interesting and organized topics, good interviews. Actually Functional Nerds follows a similar style of tight format.

      SF Signal is a regular for me too. One of the differences with Geek’s Guide is that I feel like they are bringing a pseudo-expert on the show for each “mind-meld” topic instead of 5-6 random genre fans on SF signal (don’t get me wrong, though — I still like the show).

      • Oh, thanks 🙂

        I wish there was something we could do to help you understand, but I’m afraid our spoken English is not very good and I haven’t heard of a “Google Translate” for oodcasts :/

  14. Easy recommendations:

    Coode street podcast
    Galactic Suburbia
    The Writer and the Critic (often broader than genre, always worth it)
    SF Squeecast
    Starship Sofa (manages to get really good narrators)
    Clarkesworld (has a great narrator)
    Toasted Cake (for the flash fiction, will be extended past the original one year project)
    SF crossing the Gulf (really liked the discussions, and I hope the podcast will really return in a new season)

    There are some others I follow, but these make a good list.

  15. Other than SF Signal and Functional Nerds, I listen to:

    SF Squeecast
    Coode Street Podcast
    The Once and Future Podcast

  16. What an awesome thread – as a podcast addict, this is like someone opening up a big box of candy and shoving it under my nose … will probably result in nervous collapse of my bargain-basement mp3 player, but never mind that.

    Much thanks to everyone who’s contributed.

    Can’t add much in the sf/f mainstream to the pretty comprehensive recommendations already made, but, with apologies, thought I’d arbitrarily chip in with a couple of tangential suggestions which often deal with stuff that feels like sf or fantasy, even though it’s not:

    The Skeptics Guide to the Universe – discussions (often funny, often barbed) of real science, psuedo-science and dodgy theories from a critical, sceptical point of view.

    Monster Talk – a show about monsters, testing cryptozoological theories (about stuff like bigfoot, Loch Ness monster, chupacabra and other yet weirder beasts) with the hammer of ‘real’ science.

    Neither strictly sfnal, but both the dodgy theories and the hard science they discuss deliver much the same entertainment value and ‘vibe’ as speculative fiction and are a potential goldmine of story ideas for any aspiring writers out there!

    And PS: I’d second Edd Vick’s suggestions above – the ‘Sparks Nevada: Marshal on Mars’ show he mentions is imho very funny once you tune in to its tone of voice and running gags. (It’s all about running gags, really).

  17. I listen to a bunch of SF/F podcasts. My favorites are easy to pick, though.

    1. Sword and Laser (
    You gotta love tom and Veronica. I was a podcast fan first, but I really enjoy their Youtube show, too.

    2. SF Squeecast (
    Come on, these guys are just so much fun. I love that they only squee about their favorite things, books, movies, and comic books. I picked up a few books based solely on their recommendations and so far, they were all fantastic.

    3. Science Fiction Book Review Podcast (
    I like Luke because he review one book per podcast and goes into a lot of detail. Sometimes, I realise things I’ve missed reading the book for myself, that Luke points out. I disagree with him a lot, but he is still very pleasant to listen to (plus, British accent!). Spoiler-warning for most episodes, though!

    4. The Writer and the Critic (
    I discoverd this recently but I enjoy the idea and the books they talk about. Again, lots of spoilers (they warn you) but great in-depth talks about books and writing.

    5. Writing excuses (
    I know their tagline is “15 minutes long because you’re in a hurry and we’re not that smart” but if it were for me, their episodes could be an hour long.

    6. Rick Kleffel’s Agony Column (
    Rick does great interviews with tons of writers. They are long and in-depth and somehow he manages to make them talk about the most interesting things. Not just “how did you get that idea” kind of questions.

    7. SF Signal
    Duh! The panel discussions are awesome, my favorites are the themed discussions with lots of recommendations. Also, how cool is it that there are so many authors involved? Keep going the way you are!

  18. All of the above plus the new
    Literary Treks

  19. The Agony Column isn’t always sff, but Rick Kleffel is the Charlie Rose of author interviewers.

  20. The Agony Column
    Coode Street
    StarTalk Radio (w/ Neil Degrasse Tyson — not SF/F per se, but relevant)
    Writing Excuses

    I selectively listen to other shows.

    And WTF, peeps? No love for The Skiffy and Fanty Show? Mean. I’m biased, though…I love recording that show with Jen and Paul and Julia Rios. So much fun.


  21. I will share some love for Skiffy and Fanty. I love Torture Cinema and the interviews they have on there. So now you know you have at least one fan. You are right up there with my must listen list of Writing Excuses, I Should be Writing and the Dead Robots Society.

    • Thanks for the love 🙂

      Oh, and I should go try I Should Be Writing and Dead Robots Society again. It’s been a while since I last listened…

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