Your Hosts: Howard, Mary Robinette, and Dan, with special guests Bart Smith and Ben Hewett
When we talk about space travel we’re usually talking about rocket scientists and astronauts. In this episode we spoke with our guests Bart Smith and Ben Hewett, about the “unsexy” (read: possibly boring but don’t be deceived) side of the space program—budgeting, logistics, and procurement. RFI and RFP, with toilets, hammers, and business cards; that’s this episode.
(For those unfamiliar with the above TLAs [three letter acronyms], RFI and RFP stand for Request for Information and Request for Proposal.)
Your Hosts: Brandon, Mary, Dan, and Howard, with special space-guest Kjell Lindgren
Kjell Lindgren, flight surgeon, Expedition 44/45, joined us for an episode that perhaps should have been called “we ask the space-man all of the things.” We asked him stuff that we wanted to know more about, and came away richer for the experience.
If there’s just one technical term worth bringing home from this episode, it’s “expeditionary behavior.” It’s the sort of thing that can make us all richer for the experience.
Credits: This episode was recorded by Benjamin Hewett at the Johnson Space Center in Houston, and mastered by Alex Jackson at Writing Excuses Mission Control in Chicago.
BONUS: NASA invited us back to be on THEIR show, Houston We Have a Podcast, and that episode went live about three days before this did. More Kjell Lindgren!
Your Hosts: Brandon, Mary, Dan, and Howard, with special guest Wendy Tolliver
Wendy skis, and snowboards, and writes YA novels. She is also the parent of three, one of whom suffers from mental illness. She joined us to talk about how writers can do a better job of depicting it, and how to avoid the pitfalls and the harmful cliches.
Credits: This episode was recorded live at Salt Lake Fan X by Dan Thompson, and mastered by Alex Jackson
Pick a mental disorder that you think pop culture has informed you about. Study up on it. Then write a scene in which that disorder informs the character’s behavior without actually naming the disorder.
Your Hosts: Dan, Mary, Aliette, and Howard with special guest J.Y. Yang
J.Y. Yang is a Hugo-nominated short story writer from Singapore who identifies as non-binary. They joined us to talk about this non-binary identification, and how writers can do a better job of depicting it (beyond simply using non-gendered pronouns.)
Credits: This episode was recorded by Bert Grimm and mastered by Alex Jackson
Your Hosts: Howard and Dan, with special guest Lawrence Schoen
Lawrence Schoen, clinical psychologist, cognitive hypnotist, small press publisher, Klingon language expert, and novelist, joined us at GenCon Indy for a bonus episode about elephants and death.
Howard and Lawrence both write uplifted elephants into their stories, and their stories also feature death as a theme, so this is a closer fit than it may seem to be at first blush.
Liner Notes: This episode was recorded in 2016, and after falling through the cracks (thanks in no small part to being below the fold on a spreadsheet), was rescheduled to coincide with the release of Moons of Barsk, Lawrence’s second novel in the uplifted-elephant setting.
Credits: This episode was mastered by Alex Jackson, and was made possible by our Patreon supporters
Your Hosts: Dan, Mary, Aliette, and Howard, with Kristie Claxton
Kristie Claxton joined us at WXR 2017 to talk about reading outside of the spaces where we’re comfortable and familiar. Specifically, we focused on how to learn about people who are not you by reading stories by and about them.
Credits: This episode was recorded by Bert Grimm, and mastered by Alex Jackson
In this episode we go into great depth on Mary’s novel with the expert technical help of NASA astronaut Kjell Lindgren, who was one of Mary’s consulting readers. Like most of our project-in-depth episodes this one runs long. Longer still because we were at JSC in Houston, which was incredibly cool for all of us, so nobody was watching the clock.
Liner Notes: The reference to “Type 2” fun comes from an as-yet-unpublished episode. Type 1 fun is fun in the moment. Type 2 fun is fun to talk about later. Maybe much, much later.
Credits: This episode was recorded by Benjamin Hewett, and mastered by Alex Jackson
At GenCon Indy 2017 we were joined by Wildstyle (@MrWildstyle on Twitter), who wears many hats, and many of the hats he wears are donned in service of producing hip-hop.
One of the most interesting revelations (especially for Howard, whose background in audio engineering predates MP3 technology by half a decade) was just how many hats there are. The role of producer in the hip-hop scene may include the roles of audio engineer, composer, and and even musician.
Liner Notes: For a deeper look at Wildstyle’s work, search Soundcloud for “Wildstyle DaProducer.” He’s been producing for a year since this episode was recorded.