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Jul 3, 2020

Virtual reality has been a mainstay of science fiction for a hundred years, but now it's finally a real technology. How does real VR change the stories we tell? Plus we talk to Fivestar, a porn director who's been working on virtual reality porn, to learn the truth about real-life VR sex. Warning: the second half of...


Jun 4, 2020

We love escapism, and being able to escape into imaginary worlds is a super important survival strategy in the midst of oppression, pandemics, state-sponsored violence. But what if a story is escapist for some people, but not for others? And how dark can a story get and still be escapist? Let's talk about escaping...


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.