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Diabolical Plots is a Sci-fi/Fantasy zine that covers virtually every media related to the genre from books to movies to video games. This site also features regular content related to the craft of writing. Take a look around!

13 March 2017 ~ 0 Comments

Anime Review: Yuri on Ice

yuri on ice

Figure skating has always been my favorite event at the Winter Olympics, having grown up watching it with my parents, and then continuing on my own as an adult. No other sport occupied my childhood nearly so much, so when Yuri on Ice was announced, it was a given that I would watch it.

10 March 2017 ~ 0 Comments

The Best of Clarkesworld 2016

Another great year for Clarkesworld, lots of great stories by authors both familiar and new. Clarkesworld remains the most prolific of the podcasts I listen to, clocking in at 83 stories for the year of 2016, and with a much higher wordcount limit than most of the others, that comes to significantly more words. Neil Clarke continues as editor, and Kate Baker continues to produce, host, and narrate most of the episodes of the podcast.

They continue to publish monthly stories published from Chinese through a relationship with StoryCom. This has had a wonderful result, as I’ve very much enjoyed finding new Chinese authors in translation through Clarkesworld, and you can clearly see the effect on this list.

All of the stories that are eligible for the Nebulas and Hugos are marked with an asterisk (*) if they are Clarkesworld originals, or a double-asterisk (**) if they were first published elsewhere in 2016 and then reprinted in Clarkesworld.

06 March 2017 ~ 0 Comments

Winter 2017 Anime First Impressions

Winter 2017 Anime First Impressions

accaWinter is a slim season this year, though there are a couple gems. Because of the partnership between Funimation and Crunchyroll, most new anime brought to the US now is streaming on the former (if dubbed) or the latter (if subtitled) and I’m watching entirely on Crunchyroll again. Though there are other players in the licensing market now, like Amazon and Netflix, the former does not regularly simulcast and the latter never does.

Amazon has started it’s own Anime Strike streaming channel for an additional $5/month on top of Amazon Prime membership (US members-only), but with only a handful of exclusives and two winter simulcasts it’s hard to justify at this point. The dollar goes so much farther with their competitors.

01 March 2017 ~ 2 Comments

DP Fiction #25: “Bloody Therapy” by Suzan Palumbo

I hugged my daughter, Ashley, when she returned home from school crying. She told me she was scared of going to the bathroom alone,because of Bloody Mary, and had wet her pants on the bus ride home. I wiped her eyes and kissed her forehead.

“The kids in my class said Bloody Mary would steal my soul if I said her name three times in the bathroom mirror,” she said rubbing her eyes.

“Bloody Mary doesn’t exist, Sweetheart. She’s a story people made up to scare each other.”

“But Mom, you said I would make friends with the kids here if I looked for the good in them. How can they be good if they try to scare me?” Her sobs receded into the focused expression of a child trying to make sense of the world.

“Trust me, Hon, everyone is capable of being good. Even not-real Bloody Mary could be nice if she wanted to be.”

27 February 2017 ~ 0 Comments

The Best of Escape Pod 2016

written by David Steffen Escape Pod is the weekly science fiction podcast, edited by Norm Sherman, what is I think the longest running science fiction podcast out there. In February Escape Pod once again participated in the Artemis Rising event across the EA podcasts. Escape Pod published 43 stories in 2016. Every story that is […]

27 February 2017 ~ 0 Comments

Long List Volume 2 Ebook on Sale!

The Long List Volume 2 ebook is on sale for only 99 cents today! Get it at that price while you can!

20 February 2017 ~ 0 Comments

The Best of Podcastle 2016

written by David Steffen Podcastle is the weekly fantasy podcast published by Escape Artists.  At the beginning of the year it was co-edited by Rachael K. Jones and Graeme Dunlop.  Partway through the year Rachael retired and her co-editor seat was filled by Jen Albert.  As well as weekly full-length feature episodes, they also publish […]

13 February 2017 ~ 0 Comments

The Best of Pseudopod 2016

written by David Steffen Pseudopod, the weekly horror podcast edited by Shawn Garrett and Alex Hofelich, has now been running for more than ten years, an incredible feat for a podcast, which often fade away after a year or two. 2016 marked some major moments in the podcast’s history–they increased their pay rate for flash […]

06 February 2017 ~ 0 Comments

The Best of Strange Horizons 2016+

written by David Steffen Strange Horizons is a freely available online speculative fiction zine that also publishes nonfiction and poetry.  Their editor-in-chief is Niall Harrison.  Their fiction editors are Lila Garrott, Catherine Krahe, An Owoyo, and Vajra Chandresekera, and their podcast is edited, hosted, and usually read by Anaea Lay.  They publish a variety of styles […]

01 February 2017 ~ 1 Comment

DP Fiction #24: “The Avatar In Us All” by J.D. Carelli

For my 88th birthday, I celebrate with a bottle of bourbon. I fumble with the anti-intoxication meds my doctor insists I take, the dispenser flying out of my hands and across the kitchen table. “Goddammit!”

Chrissy walks in, putting her hands on her hips in disapproval. Her face is her mother’s, but when I look for my eyes, all I see are the blank, grey eyes of an android. Not my daughter, only her avatar.

“Is it so hard to ask for help?” she snaps. The avatar has a faux personality—based on Chrissy’s—but the motherly tone in her voice tells me my daughter is sitting halfway around the world, jacked-in.

“I’m an old man,” I say, reaching for the bourbon. “Why bother?”

She walks over to the table, deftly dispenses a tablet, and pops it into my mouth. Sitting down in a chair beside me, she pushes two glasses my way.

“Do you at least have a glass of something where you are?” I ask, filling both glasses.

She chuckles. “It’s morning over here, Dad. You know that.”

“I know,” I say, washing the pill down with the bourbon. “I was just testing you.”

“Sure you were.” She follows my lead, downing the glass.

I fill them both again. “You know I’m just going to empty your stomach reservoir and drink it, right?”