Friday, April 20th, 2012

Cover for Drabblecast episode 240, Trifecta XXI, by Gino MorettoWe bought our first yarn baby at a garage sale. The ends of its arms were frayed and its eye buttons dangled loose on bare threads.

This theme of this episode of the Drabblecast is family unties: Nontraditional homes and family situations. In the drabble, the enterprising resident of a haunted house fools its ghosts into performing everyday domestic tasks. In Divorce in the House of Flies, a young boy has to deal with his parents’ divorce at the same time he has to deal with their transformation into human-shaped masses of tiny insects. In Wendigo Bake Sale, residents of a small town overcome their initial terror of a pair of wendigo participating in the school bake sale, only to be frightened anew when the wendigo reveal they are supporting the school because their child attends. In Knit, after losing their first yarn baby during her rebellious teen years in a tragic unraveling accident, a couple tries vainly to reconstruct her from the scraps of yarn, stuffing, and buttons left behind.

"Divorce in the House of Flies" by Dustin Reade is a Drabblecast original story. "Wendigo Bake Sale" by Leslianne Wilder is a Drabblecast original story. "Knit" by Brenda Stokes Barron is a Drabblecast original story.
Episode Art:  Gino Moretto
Read by:  Josh Roseman and Ray Sizemore

Twabble:  “The crowd at the gallows looked up, then down. Up. Down. “That bungee noose is makin’ my neck sore,” one man finally said. ”  by  Travelin' Corpse Feet

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Friday, April 13th, 2012

Cover for Drabblecast episode 239, Killing the Morrow, by John DeBergeYou know, I’ve heard my share of disembodied voices.  I’m accustomed to their fickle, sometimes bizarre demands.  But tonight’s voice is different, clear as gin and utterly compelling.  I must listen…

This episode of the Drabblecast concerns time and inter-dimensional travel. In the drabble, a being hurriedly fleeing its own dimension accidentally merges with a pizza jockey but still cannot escape its pursuers. In the feature, Killing the Morrow, voices from a ruined future attempt to flee to our present, commandeering a workforce to construct bathtub chambers where they can grow physical bodies and ready cities from which to rule. Is this the end of mankind as we know it, or can a second faction of future-dwellers subvert this implosive invasion?

Originally published in: Starlight Anthology #1, 1996.
Episode Art:  John Deberge

Twabble:  “"Heard you got pulled over by the thought police the other night." "Yeah I was thinking a mile a minute - in a school zone!" ”  by  loyaleagle

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  •  Feature:  From the Lost Diary of TreeFrog7  by  Nnedi Okorafor
  •  Drabble:  Moving the Goalposts  by  Nathan Lee
  •  Genre:  Drabblecast  Sci-Fi

Thursday, March 29th, 2012

Cover for Drabblecast episode 238, The Lost Diary of TreeFrog7, by Caroline ParkinsonTranslating… Appendix 820 of The Forbidden Greeny Jungle Field Guide. This series of audio files was created by TreeFrog7. It has been automatically translated into text

In this episode of the Drabblecast, heavily pregnant jungle explorer TreeFrog7 keeps a recorded diary of data she and her husband are collecting for the Forbidden Greeny Jungle Field Guide. As they close in on a legendary mature CPU plant (MCPU), a wild version of cultivated CPU plants used as personal computers, they encounter numerous jungle creatures including an enormous flightless moth protecting the plant. Despite its attacks, the explorers do not want to kill the moth in case the MCPU needs it to survive. While treed by the moth in the MCPU, TreeFrog7 gives birth to their daughter while her husband downloads the MCPU’s data. Close enough to see the MCPU’s monitor, they watch a rapidly shifting display of locations and symbols. TreeFrog7 realizes the images are getting closer to their own location and represent another explorer’s collected data. Finally, the scene fades and the monitor shows only two eyes. The diary ends with an entry by an unknown voice that implies the explorers have themselves been collected. In the drabble, a teenage boy fails to convince an uninterested, gum-snapping girl that he understands her feelings of otherness and isolation.

Originally published in Clarkesworld Magazine.
Episode Art:  Caroline Parkinson
Read by:  Veronica Giguere

Twabble:  “Her whiskers tickled my cheek as she purred and explored my face. Who would have thought grandma was this affectionate? ”  by  TroyStJames

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  •  Feature:  Unreliable Witness  by  Jo Walton
  •  Drabble:  Missing Things  by  Ben Kapitz
  •  Genre:  Drabblecast  Drama  Sci-Fi

Wednesday, March 7th, 2012

Cover for Drabblecast episode 235, Unreliable Witness, by Kathleen BeckettI don’t know if this is the same tape as last time, because They keep moving things around and stealing them. I don’t know who does it. It may be the staff here, or my own family when they come to visit, or the aliens, but somebody’s always doing it — taking my glasses, my tapes, my TV remote, anything I put down for a second. I don’t think it’s the other residents. I used to think that, but I don’t think they’re that organized. Some of them are a bit senile, to tell you the truth…

In this episode of the Drabblecast, Catherine is an 89-year-old nursing home resident plagued by someone who keeps taking her things and a son and daughter-in-law who treat her like a child. When she gets a visit from an alien named Tom, they strike a bargain: He will tell her who the thief is if she tells him the secret to longevity. His race does not live to old age, they die after reaching breeding age and having children (the human equivalent of about 40 years old); he is trying to learn how to extend their lifespan. Despite her insistence that there is no secret he doesn’t believe her, but does tell her no one is taking her stuff – she just can’t keep track of it. Catherine thinks he is lying because he didn’t like that she didn’t have an answer for him and becomes convinced that the people who are taking her stuff are actually looking for alien, looking for clues about their existence among her possessions. She makes a tape recording of her experience, hoping that when they inevitably take the tape and listen to it they will realize they have no reason to continue stealing from her since she will freely tell them everything she knows. In the drabble, a young girl wakes up with a new set of stitches and doesn’t stop searching until she finds the quarter the kidney fairy has left her.

Originally published in Strange Horizons, January 2001.
Episode Art:  Kathleen Beckett
Read by:  Delianne Forget

Twabble:  “Even they don't fully understand the butterfly effect, yet they seem to love flapping those delicate and deadly wings. ”  by  TroyStJames

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Tuesday, February 21st, 2012

Cover for Drabblecast episode 233, A Blade of Love, by K. MartinezAllan Thermoose’s wife is in love with a blade of grass. It’s the 375th blade directly even with the crack in the third slab of sidewalk east of the mailbox. The blade gets full sun all day, and Allan, a stickler for lawn maintenance, is careful to water it, along with all the others, for approximately thirty minutes per day, moving the sprinkler three times to ensure even water distribution. He occasionally counts the residual droplets left on the tufts of grass fifteen minutes after he shuts off the water. If he’s not happy with the results, he repeats the process until he’s positive his lawn has had enough to drink.

This episode of the Drabblecast is concerned with strange love. In the drabble, a mother’s last thoughts are for her son as the mower’s blades cut her down but pass over him. In the feature, Allan Thermoose’s wife falls in love with a blade of grass. Her behavior increasingly unconventional includes: standing outside staring at the lawn, forbidding Allan to cut that blade, sleeping outside on the lawn, and dressing up for the blade. It soon becomes clear that action must be taken.

A Drabblecast original story.
Episode Art:  K. Martinez

Twabble:  “Starting my new job today, I really screwed up at my last job. Hopefully being a ghost will be safer than being a stunt man. ”  by  tehmedus

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Tuesday, January 31st, 2012

Cover for Drabblecast episode 231, Trifec ta XX, by Brent HolmesThe six of them meet for the first time in front of the sagging clapboard house where Everett Montrose was born. All are tired, with hollows under their eyes from driving or riding buses for days. Even so, they greet each other with shy, relieved smiles. Few words are said; most seem unsure of how to speak to each other. There are some handshakes, even a quick hug or two, but these interactions are awkward and all soon turn their attention to their reason for coming here. They all carry with them small pieces of Everett Montrose, and all instinctively touch the fragments as they look to the house.

This episode of the Drabblecast opens with an announcement that the Kickstarter goal for Norm’s new CD has been reached. The theme of the trifecta is Southern justice. In Whit Carlson’s Trespasser, chronic bellyacher Whit Carlson makes a complaint to the sheriff about a clown fishing on his property. In The Six Pieces of Everett Montrose, six strangers meet in front of the house where Everett Montrose was born and where his brother still lives. Each has been compelled to return the bone fragment he or she has found. In Boll Weevil, a man drives home through a plague of boll weevils to face the end of the world. Whether they are a bioweapon, a biblical plague, or aliens, the boll weevils have survived the winter and started breeding wildly, injecting their babies into people with each bite. After containment and quarantine have failed to stop them, a scorched earth policy is about to be enacted. The episode concludes with a bit by Hearty White reading a poetry submission rejection letter.

Hearty White's Miracle Nutrition Hour "The Six Pieces of Everett Montrose", "Whit Carlson's Trespasser", and "Boll Weevil" are all Drabblecast original stories.
Episode Art:  Brent Holmes

Twabble:  “Professorplex8 continued, "Even if humans did exist that hardly supports the theory of intelligent design, does it?" ”  by  Steven D. Lidster

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Friday, July 22nd, 2011

Cover for Drabblecast episode 211, At the End of the Hall, by Michael HoskinsMy earliest fear, the one I remember anyways, was of great pulp magazine robots with hot water heater bodies and vacuum tube eyes. My brother forbade me to touch his precious magazines, so I wouldn’t. I’d stare and stare at the covers through; hourglassed damsels in diaphanous gowns draped over thick slab altars, and the robots, always the robots with their cylindrical torsos and pincer claws for hands….

In Search of the Brain-Eating Nandi Bear Part III

Originally published in Fantasy Magazine #1, 2005. The Dunesteef Podcast
Episode Art:  Michael Hoskins
Read by:  Delianne Forget
Music by:   Sigur Ros, Norm Sherman, Gringo Motel

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