Archive for the 'Flash' Category
Pseudopod 456: Flash On The Borderlands XXVI: Official Reports

“Political language is designed to make lies sound truthful and murder respectable, and to give an appearance of solidity to pure wind. ”

George Orwell


“Thumbwood” by Davin Ireland

“Thumbwood” was originally published in September of 2007 in THE FIRST HUMDRUMMING BOOK OF HORROR STORIES, a UK print anthology of horror fiction edited by Ian Alexander Martin. The tale was reprinted in August of 2010 in ESTEBAN’S HOUSE OF BIZARRO, an online journal of bizarro fiction that folded some weeks later. While the tale itself is fictional, the structure and language of the document are lifted directly from a genuine British Ministry of Defence report I was able to get my hands on.

DAVIN IRELAND was born and raised in the south of England, but currently resides in the Netherlands. His fiction credits include stories published in over sixty print magazines and anthologies on both sides of the Atlantic, including Aeon, Underworlds, The Horror Express, Zahir, Comets & Criminals, Rogue Worlds, Storyteller Magazine and Something Wicked. He blogs at Davin Ireland.

Your reader – should be somewhat familiar to you…

“c) The kitchen is surprisingly modern given the setting, and contains many of the domestic appliances one might expect from an equivalent family home. Dishwasher, microwave, fridge-freezer and designer espresso machine are all in evidence. In an alcove by the back door, Sisyphus struggles valiantly to push a large granite sphere up a craggy mountainside. Oblivious to our operative’s presence, the former Corinthian king puffs and strains in order to achieve his goal, jaw clenched, diminutive biceps popping beneath the fabric of his flimsy cotton tunic. The task is a thankless one.”


“Final Corrections, Pittsburgh Times-Dispatch” by M. Bennardo.

“Final Corrections, Pittsburgh Times-Dispatch” was first published by Daily Science Fiction on January 3, 2013. (about story) “I’m quite fond of Pittsburgh, and selected it as the scene of this story only for its interesting geography.”

M. BENNARDO is the writer of over 40 published short stories. He is also co-editor of the MACHINE OF DEATH series of anthologies (along with David Malki and Ryan North). The most recent volume in the series, “THIS IS HOW YOU DIE”, was published by Grand Central Press in July 2013, and was named by the Onion AV Club as one of their favorite books of the year. He lives in Cleveland, Ohio and his personal website is M. Bennardo.

Your reader – John Bell – is creator of award-winning radio ads (no, really!), voice talent, audio-book voice, and writer/producer of the “Bells in the Batfry” podcast. He has an audio book on Audible and iTunes (plus a text version, but you REALLY want the audio version) called “The Devil’s Pinata”… a rather silly and pun-filled spoof of action-adventure novels…

“In several items yesterday, the Visitor was variously described as having six legs, eight legs, or “an unholy agglomeration of writhing, thrashing appendages, unable to be counted”. The correct number of legs is eight.”


“N0072-JK1: Study of Synaptic Response of the Organism to Spontaneous Stimulation of Vulnerability Zones. Photographic Analysis” by Adam Corbin Fusco.

“N0072-JK1: Study of Synaptic Response of the Organism to Spontaneous Stimulation of Vulnerability Zones. Photographic Analysis” was first published in the anthology Borderlands 5 from Borderlands Press. It was reprinted in The Year’s Best Fantasy and Horror: Seventeenth Annual Collection. Borderlands 5 was republished by Warner Books under the title From the Borderlands.

ADAM CORBIN FUSCO is a writer whose fiction has appeared in Realms of Fantasy, Beneath Ceaseless Skies, Weird Tales, The Year’s Best Fantasy and Horror, and other publications. His website is at The Tantisper Tower

Your reader – Erik Luke – is the screenwriter of the Joe Dante film EXPLORERS, which is currently in development as a remake, the comic books GHOST and WONDER WOMAN, and wrote and directed the NOT QUITE HUMAN films for Disney TV. His current project INTERFERENCE, a meta horror audiobook about an audiobook… that kills, is available free on iTunes and at

“Reaction to the ‘primal face’ is correlative to reaction to the ‘laughter response face.’ Subjects were shown a photograph of a theater audience. They were told the audience was viewing a comedic film and were asked to rate the comedic value of the film on the one to five Tortelli scale based on the audience’s facial reaction. Seventy-nine percent of males and seventy-two percent of females rated the comedic value at a four or greater. The fact that the audience was not watching a comedic film at all maintains the consistency of the study. (Note photographic archive of Nazi ‘Laughter Cabaret’ wherein each seat delivered mid-level electrical shock via anal probes during strategic ‘punchlines.’)”


If you like horror movies you really should be listening to FACULTY OF HORROR!.

If you are female (or identify as such) and write horror fiction, you should consider submitting to Artemis Rising 2: Hecate Strikes Back

If you enjoyed the stylistic conceit of this week’s episodes, you should check out TANDEM REGION TIMES

Pseudopod Bonus Flash: Fan Letter To Joe Lansdale

by Adrian Simmons.

“Fan Letter To Joe Lansdale” is making its first appearance on PSEUDOPOD.

ADRIAN SIMMONS writes science fiction, fantasy, a little non-fiction, and a little horror. He is a founding member and co-editor of Heroic Fantasy Quarterly. His science fiction stories are available in issues one and three of James Gunn’s AD ASTRA online magazine, and his story “Paradise of Wasteland” in Heroic Fantasy Quarterly number nineteen received a “recommended” score from Locus magazine’s Lois Tilton.

Your reader is Jared Axelrod. Jared has been involved with podcasting for almost a decade as the writer and producer of three science-fiction podcasts, the audio anthology series “The Voice Of Free Planet X,” and the serials “Aliens You Will Meet” and “Fables Of The Flying City.” The story started in “Fables Of The Flying City” is concluded in The Battle Of Blood & Ink, a graphic novel published by Tor. He is also the creator of several comics and short stories featuring the down-on-his-luck supervillain, Comrade Cockroach. He’s recently restarted The Voice of Free Planet X podcast, back and better than ever!


“Dear Mr. Landsdale:

I would like to congratulate you on your story “Boys Will Be Boys” in the FenCon 2010 program booklet.

For years I have tried to write a story that gets into the head of a sociopath, and you’ve put together one that gets into the heads of not one, but two of them!”


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, has now turned her hand to audiobooks and can be found on 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.

“I recognize her sitting five seats down at the bar. She notices my attention and invites me over with a sip of her drink and a nod to the empty stool to her right. We are diseased, and long for understanding company.

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

Pseudopod Bonus Flash: The Discussion Of Mimes

by Michael Payne.

“The Discussion Of Mimes” is making its first appearance on PSEUDOPOD. “Why are so many people afraid of clowns and amused by mimes?”

MICHAEL PAYNE is a comedian who has written for the TV show “The Daily Buzz” and on He maintains a blog at THE INTERESTING TIMES HERALD.

Your reader this week – Joe Calarco – is the Resident Sound Designer and Associate Artistic Director of Coeurage Theatre Company, the only exclusively Pay-What-You-Want theatre in Los Angeles. They are in their 6th season. Joe will be directing the West Coast Premiere of Chicago’s smash hit play The Sparrow this fall. He is also in pre-production for his first film, a short based on Eric Czuleger’s “Punksnotdead” from his novel Immortal L.A. Punksnotdead was produced for Pseudopod at the end of last year, so be sure check it out!.


“Following careful overanalysis, I decided to treat myself for a change. I’d spent the last three years working during the day and attending school at night. You can understand why I thought I was entitled to some frivolity.

I settled on mime classes. I’d never even thought about miming, which is part of what drew me to it. I’d been living a drab, bookish life, so I wanted to go as far in the other direction as possible.

An Internet search found fewer mime classes than I anticipated. I figured in NYC there was enough interest in every artistic pursuit to support a small army of participants. Miming appeared to be the exception. If they rebranded it “mime yoga” perhaps it’d be different.”