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Apr 9, 2020

Plots are one of the most important parts of storytelling. They carry our characters forward, and they force our heroes to make choices and to change along the way. Every story has a plot, whether it's about saving the world of making a cup of tea. So why is it so hard to come up with a decent plot? We talk about good...


Mar 12, 2020

Everything is bloody terrifying right now, what with the pandemic and the would-be strongmen and the natural disasters. So it's easy to retreat into nihilistic storytelling, which revels in the destruction of civilization. But screw that --- when you root for the destroyer, you're rooting for unimaginable suffering...


Feb 13, 2020

Science fiction and fantasy are full of feasts, from the banquets in Game of Thrones to all those Klingon delicacies. Why is food so important in SF? To find out, we talked to Mary Anne Mohanraj, author of The Stars Change and the cookbook A Feast of Serendib: A Sri Lankan-American Cookbook.


Jan 30, 2020

Science fiction and fantasy are full of stories about the power of knowing someone's true name, from the Doctor on Doctor Who to the wizards in Ursula K. Le Guin's Earthsea. But why are names so important and powerful? And what do they tell us about the characters we love?


Jan 2, 2020

The phrase "Pulp Fiction" brings to mind Quentin Tarantino's movie of the same name. But real-life pulp fiction is much stranger, and more colorful, than you ever realized. We talk to pulp historian and author Jess Nevins about the weird and sometimes problematic history of the pulps.