listening to the podcast

Click on the menu below to find a link to the episode list.
For descriptions of each episode, check out my Show Notes at the top of the page. This is a work of fiction. Any similarity to real people or events is purely coincidental.

WARNING: Some of the language may be offensive, but no worse than you would expect in an R rated movie.

Special thanks to NASA for the image of the galaxy.

Podcast of the novel BETWEEN EARTH AND ARCTURUS

Tuesday, November 1, 2016

Paso Robles Science Fiction Readers



     I met with a science fiction reading group in Paso Robles near the coastal mountains of California. The region is idyllic with vineyards, art studios, and boutique shops.
     The group, six well-read fans of science fiction, had all read Between Earth and Arcturus and invited me to come and meet them. They had some great questions about the process of writing and how ideas for stories gradually take shape, and expressed an interest in reading my next book.
     Events like this are precious to a writer and I truly appreciate my readers.

Wednesday, October 12, 2016

A Rare Resource for Writers



     Here’s something different. If you are a writer, you will see the value of this.

     Jim Heskett, author of at least 16 published books, has a unique audio program that you can find on iTunes. He not only gives tips for writers about technology, marketing, and the process of writing, he reads a chapter from his first (unpublished) novel, and then critiques it. He explains what works or doesn’t work, and how it could have been done better.

     Over the years I have read lots of books about the craft of writing. I’ve gone to seminars, group meetings, publishing events, and fan events. I took a bunch of writing classes, too. Most of these things were worthwhile and I could recommend the same to anyone who is serious about writing, but none of us have enough time to do it all.

     This is something you can listen to while driving to work or pruning your roses.  Ah…. that elusive multitasking finally works.

     Check it out on iTunes (Indie Author Answers) and visit his website (www.jimheskett.com)  for lots more interesting things.

Monday, June 27, 2016

See you in the tunnels


Take a chance and visit Our Fair City. I did.
The only description I found of this show is on www.audiodramadirectory.com and it didn’t really answer the question “will I like this?”
The show’s website, www.ourfaircity.com, does not provide any description. It does, however, have an interesting comic book version of the story.
In all fairness, Our Fair City isn’t easy to describe. A mix of comedy, parody, science fiction, and serious drama, the show highlights some very recognizable flaws in our society.
The plot follows intertwined paths of colorful characters in a future world who are each coping with family, career, love, and morality, all within a self-contained city consisting of ‘The Tower’ where the elite live, the Tunnels where most others live, and the Lightning Rigs which float above the city to gather electricity from storms.
Set in what was once Hartford, Connecticut, the world has become a bleak wasteland with the city/corporation of HartLife (not to be confused with the real Hart Life Corporation) as the only world the characters have ever known. The Corporation controls, manipulates, and dictates every aspect of their lives. However, people being basically self-serving, complete control is never really possible.
There are larger than life heroes and villains; families with family issues; and the mole people, human/mole hybrids who are uniquely likable workers for the Corporation. The characters are endearing, and the acting is superb. The writing quality is stellar, and meticulous care went into the audio editing.
The tone is set by the purple prose of a narrator (Ansel Burch) who frequently slips into alliteration and gradually exposes himself to be an unreliable witness of history with his over-the-top allegiance to the Corporation.
Over the course of the first six seasons (season 7 is just starting), we learn the fascinating culture of Hart Life, and the challenges faced by its citizens which are recognizable analogies of things we all take for granted in our own world. An intricate backstory gradually appears, providing logical explanations for how things got this way. In fact, the longer I listen to the show, the less farfetched it seems. 
Our Fair City is a remarkable achievement for the Chicago based team. The cast and crew is huge, with vast experience in theater, and performing arts. There is so much to say about them, I will simply refer you to their website, www.ourfaircity.com and the facebook page, www.facebook.com/ourfaircityradio, where you can find bios, comics, photos and lots more.

This is one of the best and most entertaining audio dramas. So, please, take a chance and visit Our Fair City.

Sunday, April 10, 2016

Recommended podcast...Harry Strange: Radio Drama



An excellent show about supernatural detective work is Harry Strange: Radio Drama

A private detective specializes in supernatural cases, and he is uniquely equipped for the job with an arsenal of weapons tailored for his unnatural adversaries, and near-immortal immunity to death bestowed upon him by a higher power.
This is like a mix of hardboiled cynical gumshoe Sam Spade and Buffy the Vampire Slayer. Harry’s fascinating  backstory is gradually revealed through the course of many episodes. The resemblance to film noir is complete with inner dialogue laced with colorful metaphors, the femme-fatale, and occasional shots of whiskey.
I have never heard of a show quite like this one. Once I started listening, I had to keep coming back for the next one. The writing, acting, and production quality are all outstanding. Most episodes were recorded in a conference room at Kennesaw State University in Georgia, and written by Tony Sarrecchia.
Awards include: 1st Place CBI Regularly Scheduled Program 2012; 2nd Place CBI Regularly Scheduled Program 2011; 3rd Place CBI Best of Show 2011; and the Broadcast Education Association’s Festival of Media Arts awarded the Best of Festival Award to Tony Sarrecchia and Breanne Ahearn.
Breanne was a producer and soundscape engineer for the show, and is now an associate producer at WAGA-TV in Atlanta.
Other notables include:
Kellen Stennett: (Harry) Owns a string of pilate gyms in Atlanta
Parisa Johnston: (Lilith) Also plays Regina, the Head of Surveillance at the Bureau, in Allegiant (p3 of the Divergent Series)
Jason Tyler: (Finny) also directs most of the episodes.
Sketch MacQuinor: (Morningstar, second half of season 3): Lead animator on Squidbillies
Joe Roesch: (Mr. K) graduated from Law School in 2015 and is waiting for the results of his Bar Exam.
Molly Silverman, soundscape engineer, is a Communications Major at Kennesaw State University and is graduating this year. She is the host of her own talk show on KSU Radio
Tony Sarrecchia's first teleplay, Sunday Mourning, will air as the second episode of PRIMROSE TALES, a Twilight-Zone-esque television program debuting later this year.
Harry Strange Live will be performing at Dragon*Con in Atlanta this year as part of the Atlanta Radio Theater Company.
My thanks to Tony for providing information, and to all of the talented folks who brought this show to us.
The show’s website is www.harrystrange.com, which has a link to the Harry Strange Facebook page (lots of good pictures there). You can also find the episodes on www.theaudiodramadirectory.com/sciencefiction/ and at www.projectiradio.com/show/harry-strange-radio-drama/ as well as on iTunes.

Saturday, February 20, 2016

Changing direction for the better


     The primary trait of narcissism is self aggrandizement; a personality disorder which destroys relationships, families, and even civilizations. Chances are, you have seen it in people who bully, kiss-ass, and manipulate their way into positions of power regardless of the effect on coworkers or the group.
     A self-aggrandizer will tend to derail people’s efforts, and sometimes their careers, when the glory of success might go to someone else. This behavior can devastate an organization, yet the cause is rarely brought to light and dealt with because the self-aggrandizer is focused on his or her own success rather than the success of the organization. That focus invariably includes schmoozing with higher authorities and assigning blame to others. Sadly, this often means coworkers and subordinates are privately described to the boss as incompetent, lazy, and even as liars so that their input is not sought after.
     Narcissism makes for believable villains in novels, but is all too common in real life. I began recognizing the signs at the national laboratory where I worked.
I’ve seen it before in industry when small companies gets bought out by a corporate giant, and then ruined by new executives who need the prestige of running a great company, but can’t connect the downward spiral following their takeover with the fact that they took over.
     Visiting scientists, who are essentially the customers of the lab, are quietly dismayed by the pervasive unhappiness that oozes through the ranks of employees. And science is not served; the fabulous technology is still there, but the people who best understand and operate it have been driven away, replaced by people who crave greatness and choose to take it from others rather than earn it themselves.
     I now work at a great company with really nice people who make electronics for medical devices, and I am much, much happier.