Author Topic: Pseudopod 436: Flash On The Borderlands XXV: Simulacra  (Read 2984 times)

Bdoomed

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Pseudopod 436: Flash On The Borderlands XXV: Simulacra
« on: May 02, 2015, 05:51:57 PM »
Pseudopod 436: Flash On The Borderlands XXV: Simulacra

“The strategic problem is, of course, that simulacra are reassuring only when viewed from outside. They do not provide an existential model for how to be in the world. One can appreciate the brilliance of the embalmer’s work, but one would not want to be its object.”

“Decadent Naturalism” by Charles Bernheimer; introduction to A HAVEN by J.K. Huysmans in THE DECADENT READER.



“Worm Within” by Cat Rambo

“Worm Within” was originally printed in “Clarkesworld” 2008. It is reprinted in Cat’s fantasy story collection, EYES LIKE SKY AND COAL AND MOONLIGHT. “I hope it unsettles YOU. I meant it to be unsettling — in an enjoyable way. :)

CAT RAMBO writes and edits in the Pacific Northwest. Her most recent book is NEAR + FAR, science fiction stories, from Hydra House. Listeners are invited to check out THE WORLD REMAINS MYSTERIOUS.

Your reader – Julie Hoverson – the writer and producer of such audio dramas as 19 Nocturne Boulevard and Fatal Girl (both available at 19 Nocturne Boulevard.com), has now turned her hand to audiobooks and can be found on audible.com narrating such diverse pieces as Jake Bible’s Dead Mech Apex Trilogy (third book coming soon) and several novellas that are part of Brian MacLellan’s Powder Mage series, most recently MURDER AT THE KINNEN HOTEL.

“The LED bug kicks feebly, trying to push itself away from the wall. Its wings are rounds of mica, and the hole in its carapace where someone has tacked it to the graying boards reveals cogs and gears, almost microscopic in their dimension. The light from its underside is the cobalt of distress.”



"Lullabies For A Clockwork Child” by Shane Halbach

“Lullabies For A Clockwork Child” is seeing its first publication on Pseudopod.

SHANE HALBACH lives in Chicago with his wife and two kids, where he writes software by day and avoids writing stories by night. His fiction has appeared on Escape Pod, Redstone SF, Daily Science Fiction, and elsewhere. He blogs regularly at Is This Thing On?.

Your reader – Pete Milan – is a writer and voice actor. Pete can be heard in the horror audio drama PHANTOM CANYON from Pendant Audio, available wherever audiobooks are sold. Visit Pete Milan: Cosmopolitan Jackadandy for more from him.

“You are not Jack, but I will tell you of Jack, so you can know.

Jack was beautiful and strong. Jack had curly hair and shining brown eyes, and when we walked, he held my thumb and swung our arms just to feel them move.

You will not look like Jack. Every child is different. You are both my sons, but you are different.”




“Used” by Sandra Odell

“Used” is appearing here for the first time anywhere.

SANDRA ODELL (usually) lives with her family in Washington state. Her work has appeared in Pseudopod, Jim Baen’s UNIVERSE, Crossed Genres, and Ideomancer. She is a Clarion West 2010 graduate, and is currently plotting world domination. Or her second novel, whichever comes first.

Your reader – Matt Arnold – last appeared on Pseudopod reading Episode #223 Murdock The Nobody. We also believe he is still involved with Penguincon 2015.

She says her name is Cindy. Small, Clairol blonde, buxom Cindy with a blue, winged heart tattoo under her left collarbone. I introduce myself as Steve, buy her another what-she’s-having. She traces circles around the knuckles of my right hand with the sweat from her glass. There is a band of pale skin at the base of her ring finger.”



The Parsec Awards Nomination page can be found here

Sounds in this episodes:

“Ticks” for story 1 can be found here.
“Static” for story 1 can be found here
“Interstitial Clockwork” for story 2 can be found here


Listen to this week's Pseudopod.
« Last Edit: May 02, 2015, 07:39:33 PM by Bdoomed »
I'd like to hear my options, so I could weigh them, what do you say?
Five pounds?  Six pounds? Seven pounds?

dwarzel

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Re: Pseudopod 429: Flash On The Borderlands XXV: Simulacra
« Reply #1 on: May 02, 2015, 07:36:37 PM »
I think that should be episode 436; episode 429 was the last flash collection.  Alasdair does give the correct episode number on the podcast proper.

Bdoomed

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Re: Pseudopod 436: Flash On The Borderlands XXV: Simulacra
« Reply #2 on: May 02, 2015, 07:40:08 PM »
eep! Didn't notice, fixed it here but I don't have access to the site, that's on Shawn.

Good catch :)
I'd like to hear my options, so I could weigh them, what do you say?
Five pounds?  Six pounds? Seven pounds?

Sgarre1

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Re: Pseudopod 436: Flash On The Borderlands XXV: Simulacra
« Reply #3 on: May 02, 2015, 09:11:04 PM »
Will fix

Sgarre1

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Re: Pseudopod 436: Flash On The Borderlands XXV: Simulacra
« Reply #4 on: May 02, 2015, 09:13:28 PM »
cosmetically fixed (may have to do more work on the Permalink)

Unblinking

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Re: Pseudopod 436: Flash On The Borderlands XXV: Simulacra
« Reply #5 on: May 04, 2015, 03:29:56 PM »
"Worm Within"
I liked it.  Cat does flash well, knows how to give it some punch.  Had a very PKDickian feel to it (a high compliment) questioning the nature of sentience and all that, I love that kind of SF dearly.

"Lullabies for a Clockwork Child"
Damn.  Shane hit it out of the park with this one, horrific and believable, what faults we are willing to overlook in our children.  One would hope that most parents who witness their kids on a cold-blooded murder spree would not just give them a time out and let them loose again in the morning, but I did find this believable, and the heartbreak at the loss of the previous child was all tied into it.  My guess is the child is working exactly as he designed it--he was not in his right mind, clearly, to choose to give the kid bladed fingers.  My favorite of this trio, and a solid story.

"Used"
This one was effective body horror.  But body horror is my least favorite subgenre of horror, so though it did well at it, I can't say I enjoyed it.  It made me uncomfortable, so I think it was successful?



Dwango

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Re: Pseudopod 436: Flash On The Borderlands XXV: Simulacra
« Reply #6 on: May 06, 2015, 01:11:02 PM »
In "Worm Within", I enjoyed the slow discovery of her world and the way nothing is what it appears, even the narrator.  I did not get the part where the worm inside is attempting to get her to commit suicide, but then she appears to do it and the worm is upset?  Even though it is her brain, it wanted her to kill herself, but didn't want it?  Or did the mind that wanted to live go to sleep and the suicidal part take over?  It was rather confusing.

I liked "Lullabies for a Clockwork Child", though it was a "Edward Scissorhands" gone wrong story.  He made Frankenstein seem like a really friendly dude in comparison.  I'm seeing torches and pitchforks in his future.

Finally, "Used" had a real Ewww factor, but then I realized it was just descriptions of normal human activities, "with worms".  Kind of like Spongebob episode where he is doing normal things,  but "at night".  Sorry, that kind of messed it up for me.  Funny how the mind connects things.

bounceswoosh

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Re:
« Reply #7 on: May 06, 2015, 03:44:25 PM »
I finally hit an episode of Pseudopod I couldn't finish. "Used" while making breakfast - no. Probably at any time - no.

DKT

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Re: Pseudopod 436: Flash On The Borderlands XXV: Simulacra
« Reply #8 on: May 07, 2015, 02:03:34 PM »
Wow. Shane Halbach's story just killed. That was incredible. I was thinking about Pinnochio, and then Frankenstein, and parenting decisions gone so horribly wrong. "You cannot learn from your mistakes if you are dead. You cannot improve if you are not given a chance." What a great chilling, ending. Pete Milan's reading was great too.

Sandra Odell's story -- whoa that was rough and disgusting and so horrifying. It made me all kinds of uncomfortable, and I sympathize with the poster who was making breakfast while listening. (I am not sorry I heard it, though.) If I ever see Matt Arnold in a bar, I'm leaving. Especially if he's with Sandra. (Okay, not really.)

Pretty fantastic collection Team Pseudopod.

Millenium_King

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Re: Pseudopod 436: Flash On The Borderlands XXV: Simulacra
« Reply #9 on: August 14, 2015, 04:59:01 PM »
WORM WITHIN: I have to echo Dwango's comments here.  I could not get past the contradiction of the worm wanting her dead - then despairing when she did it.  I will also add that I found the ending predictable.  "She's a robot TOO?! *GASP!*"  Sorry, I don't mean to be crass.  The writing was lovely, but the content was confusing and, in the end, not unsettling because I saw it coming a mile off.

LULLABIES: I enjoyed this one; made doubly disturbing because my own child shares a name with the deceased in the story.  However, I likewise saw the ending to this one coming a mile away.  As soon as the "blades for hands" bit.  I also guessed that the narrator would choose to wind the creature back up, despite it's killing spree.  Nothing wrong with a little predictability though, there is a difference between predictability and ponderous, heart-wrenching inevitability.  This one was the latter, while I felt WORM was the former.

USED:  Eh.
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bobmetal

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Re: Pseudopod 436: Flash On The Borderlands XXV: Simulacra
« Reply #10 on: November 19, 2019, 04:29:43 PM »
I realise that this is from a long time ago, but I'm working my way through the old episodes at the moment. I really enjoyed this collection and found each story well worth a listen

I did have a comment on the 1st story, "Worm Within", having read the other comments in the thread, my reading was that she wasn't a robot and nor was anyone else, rather she has had some  kind of mental break and was seeing everything around her as robots. The voice in her head was part of  her delusions which explains the change in its stance on her suicide