PseudoPod 612: WEIRD SCIENCE HORROR ISSUE #2: Mofongo Knows

Show Notes

“We at Pseudopod would like to dedicate this story to all of them: Cheetah, Lancelot Link, Mojo Jojo, Monsieur Mallah, Bobo the Detective Chimp, Gorilla Grodd, Comrade Dmitri-9, Cornelius & Zira, Konga, Mighty Joe Young…and all the rest…and most of all, of course, to Kong…whom we all owe an apology…he must have been a great bloke.”

Please check out Grady’s next novel — a Faustian bargain signed with heavy metal power chords — We Sold Our Souls.

Mofongo Knows

by Grady Hendrix

Off the muddy tracks between the House of Shadows, the Freak Out and the Gravitron, where passengers are pummeled with physics until they puke, behind the generators that push power to the Top Spin, the Zipper and the Rainbow, back where the night air is so thick you can chew it–stale cotton candy, old dough fried in rancid oil, the ripe aroma of the IQ Zoo with its pathetic poultry who plink pianos with their beaks–here in the jumble of shooting galleries and hoopla trailers, next to skeet ball concessions leaning against Crystal Lil’s Refreshment Emporium lies the secret heart of the fair: MOFONGO: GORILLA OF THE MIND. (Continue Reading…)

PseudoPod 611: WEIRD SCIENCE HORROR ISSUE #2: The Vaults of Yoh Vombis

Show Notes

This is the restored version of “The Vaults of Yoh-Vombis” including nearly two thousand words of atmospheric description excised by Smith (at the insistence of Weird Tales editor Farnsworth Wright), while preserving the envelopment of the story.

The Vaults of Yoh-Vombis

by Clark Ashton Smith


As an interne in the terrestrial hospital at Ignarh, I had charge of the singular case of Rodney Severn, the one surviving member of the Octave Expedition to Yoh-Vombis, and took down the following story from his dictation. Severn had been brought to the hospital by the Martian guides of the Expedition. He was suffering from a horribly lacerated and inflamed condition of the scalp and brow, and was wildly delirious part of the time and had to be held down in his bed during recurrent seizures of a mania whose violence was doubly inexplicable in view of his extreme debility.

The lacerations, as will be learned from the story, were mainly self-inflicted. They were mingled with numerous small round wounds, easily distinguished from the knife-slashes, and arranged in regular circles, through which an unknown poison had been injected into Severn’s scalp. The causation of these wounds was difficult to explain; unless one were to believe that Severn’s story was true, and was no mere figment of his illness. Speaking for myself, in the light of what afterwards occurred, I feel that I have no other recourse than to believe it. There are strange things on the red planet; and I can only second the wish that was expressed by the doomed archaeologist in regard to future explorations.

The night after he finished telling me his story, while another doctor than myself was supposedly on duty, Severn managed to escape from the hospital, doubtless in one of the strange seizures at which I have hinted: a most astonishing thing, for he had seemed weaker than ever after the long strain of his terrible narrative, and his demise had been hourly expected. More astonishing still, his bare footsteps were found in the desert, going toward Yoh-Vombis, till they vanished in the path of a light sand-storm; but no trace of Severn himself has yet been discovered. (Continue Reading…)

On Inclusion and Artemis Rising: An Apology

It has come to our attention, through multiple channels, that the current incarnation of Artemis Rising 5 has caused harm to members of our community.

Thanks to Bogi Takács’s eloquent explanation of how to bring more voices to the table, we are examining the best way to repair the trust we’ve broken. We appreciate the conversations happening on various platforms and thank you for allowing us to participate in them.

Artemis Rising’s aims have always been to highlight the work of underrepresented genre authors and provide training and progression opportunities to junior members of the Escape Artist family who are members of traditionally marginalized groups. The underrepresented groups that we’ve chosen to focus on have changed over time and are likely to continue to change from year to year.

This year, we failed to consider the effect this change would have on people who were previously eligible to submit but were not eligible this year.

Artemis Rising’s submission portals will remain open and stories are being read while we consider how best to move forward, but we feel it is imperative to urgently acknowledge our mistake.

We apologize for the exclusion and hurt caused by this year’s call. We appreciate the feedback we’ve received; to everyone who voiced their objections, thank you for giving us a chance to correct our error. We hear you.

Escape Artists editors

Escape Pod: S.B. Divya & Mur Lafferty
PseudoPod: Shawn Garrett & Alex Hofelich
PodCastle: Jen R. Albert & Khaalidah Muhammad-Ali (and assistant editor Setsu Uzume)
Cast of Wonders: Marguerite Kenner

The 2018 Artemis Rising editors

Escape Pod: S. Kay Nash & Laura Pearlman
PseudoPod: Cecilia Dockins & Tonia Thompson
PodCastle: Krystal Claxton & Elora Gatts
Cast of Wonders: Amy Brennan & Karissa Sluss

PseudoPod 610: Beneath Their Hooves

Beneath Their Hooves

by Katharine E.K. Duckett

We go to Grandmère’s house to ride the unicorns.

We only go once or twice a year, and it’s never enough. Riding the unicorns is the most fun a person could have, and I don’t know why we can’t do it every day. Mom never gives us a good reason. It’s not like ice cream, where it’ll give you a stomachache if you have too much. You could ride the unicorns for hours and hours. They never get tired. They prance and they fly a little, just a foot or two, and they’re blue and pink and green and purple, and their horns shine in the sun like candy canes, like candy canes after you’ve licked off all the red and made them white and sharp with your tongue.

Grandmère watches us from the veranda as we ride. She never touches the unicorns herself. They’re here for us. They’re here because she loves us, and she wants us to have fun. She watches, and sometimes she waves with her hand cupped like she’s a queen, the big diamonds on her necklace sparkling across the lawn, and Robin and I go around and around until we’re dizzy and Mom yells at tell us it’s time to go home. (Continue Reading…)