The Best of Lightspeed/Fantasy Podcast 2016

written by David Steffen

Lightspeed Magazine is the award-nominated science fiction magazine edited by John Joseph Adams, and their podcastis  produced by the excellent Skyboat Media.  They publish about half of the stories they publish in text.  They published 52 stories in 2016.

This year marked the publication of their People of Colo(u)r Destroy Science Fiction special issue (guest-edited by Nalo Hopkinson and Kristine Ong Muslim), published in Lightspeed, as well as the People of Colo(u)r Destroy Fantasy (guest-edited by Daniel José Older), published as a special revival issue of Fantasy Magazine (which is otherwise subsumed by Lightspeed in most other respects).

The stories eligible for the upcoming Hugo/Nebula award season are marked with an asterisk (*).

The List

1. “The Venus Effect” by Joseph Allen Hill*
Metafictional story trying to write science fiction adventures of Apollo and The Girl From Venus in various formats.  Tragic and fitting, told in a compelling way.

2.  “Not By Wardrobe, Tornado, Or Looking Glass” by Jeremiah Tolbert*
When everyone seems to be finding their own personal portal to their own personal wonderlands, Louisa awaits her turn.

3.  “Welcome to the Medical Clinic at the Interplanetary Relay Station | Hours Since the Last Death: 0” by Caroline M. Yoachim*
Written as a fun pulpy choose-your-own-adventure story.

4.  “5×5” by Jilly Dreadful*
Summer camp with mad scientist types.

5.  “The One Who Isn’t” by Ted Kosmatka*
Stories within stories, and you have to piece together what is happening as it goes.  Interesting, compelling, well done.

Honorable Mentions

“Fifty Shades of Grays” by Steven Barnes*

“Double Time” by John Chu

“The Lives of Riley” by Sean Williams*





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