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EA Makes The British Fantasy Award Finals


Award-winning genre fiction podcasts PseudoPod and PodCastle have made the shortlist for the British Fantasy Society Best Audio award. The award, which debuted in 2018, went to the BBC audio adaptation of Neil Gaiman’s Anansi Boys. PseudoPod was also a finalist that inaugural year.

We’re incredibly happy to see the hard work of our editorial teams recognized, especially by an award such as this. It speaks very highly of the BFS’ willingness to engage with the future of the industry that the Best Audio award exists and we’re honored to be on the shortlist.

Also join us in congratulating Alasdair’s weekly pop culture newsletter, The Full Lid, for its Best Nonfiction nomination!

The British Fantasy Awards are presented each year at Fantasycon which takes place in Glasgow, Scotland October 18th – 20th, 2019.

Forum Maintenance


The Escape Artists forums will be under construction throughout the summer. We’ll reopen with a new look and streamlined threads so that your comments and questions get seen by podcast staff as well as other fans.

The forum will continue to be home to our flash fiction contests and all of the existing content will be archived and searchable.

In the meantime, please pardon our dust. We’ll keep the conversation rolling over on our supporter-exclusive Discord. We’d love to chat with you there – join instantly when you support us on Patreon.

Artemis Rising Hiatus


In 2018, the Escape Artists podcasts came together to produce Artemis Rising 5. The event has been many things over the years. Beginning as a celebration of women’s speculative work in the vein of Lightspeed’s Destroy! series, the event gradually shifted focus to widen its scope.

For us behind the scenes, Artemis Rising took on another meaning — a holistic approach to issues of gender in publishing, where we offered marginalized members of our staff senior editorial roles where they could train, learn, and lead. We made a concerted effort to give folks the stage, at every step of the process, who might never have gotten the chance otherwise.

One of the most common errors in discussing, showcasing, and describing marginalized genders in a submissions call is grouping women and nonbinary folk together, as though one necessarily implies the other. Even that listing, setting women first, suggests a hierarchy of identity and importance. “Marginalized Genders” is too broad, and the tonal focus of Artemis Rising had been on the femme side of experience, which alienates some intersex folks, trans men, nonbinary men, agender folks, and many others. “Everyone but men” carries similarly loaded implications we’re not best-placed to arbitrate.

While our goals were sound, our execution was not. To our great benefit, the conversation is evolving. We are thankful for the labor of those who offered feedback or criticism and for being given the opportunity to learn from it. The problems we sought to address in 2014 are not the same as those that require attention today.

In consideration of this, we return to the question all event organizers must consider: who does this serve? And how can we make it work in practice, rather than in name?

For 2019-2020, Escape Artists is considering these questions at each level of the process. It has informed the way we’re reading stories, the way we recruit readers, and the way we train our staff both for the everyday tasks and in preparation for their own career advancement. We’ve said for the last two years or so that Artemis Rising is going to change.

In order to make the right changes, and to make sure that our execution aligns with our intentions, we’ll be taking 2020 off.

In the meantime, we want to take this opportunity to highlight some other venues focusing on similar work. Here’s a list of some of the markets (including semiprozines, token payment venues, and non-paying publications) that would all benefit from wider recognition and funding support:

To our authors, narrators, and guest editors, thank you for pulling together across genres to make Artemis Rising the best it could be. To listeners and the broader community, thank you for including us in the conversation.

Artemis Rising will return, at the right time, in the right way, with more tales to share. See you then.

Sincerely,
Escape Pod, PseudoPod, PodCastle, & Cast of Wonders

Congratulations to Alasdair Stuart, Best Fan Writer Hugo Finalist!


Hugo nominations have just been announced and we have an Escape Artist on the short lists, folks! Our very own co-owner, boss, keeper of the big red button and PseudoPod host, Alasdair Stuart is a finalist for the Best Fan Writer award!

Best Fan Writer is for work published in print or digitally for semiprozines, fanzines or generally available electronica media. Which is pretty much the part of Alasdair’s day job that isn’t Escape Artists so it’s great to see him make the list. Congratulations, boss!

The 78th World Science Fiction Convention will be held in Dublin, Ireland, from 15th to 19th August this year. The awards will be handed out there and Escape Artists will be present for the whole weekend so do come say hello. More details to follow.

If You Stand for Nothing, What’ll You Fall For?


This is not the Parsec Awards blog post we began writing a few days ago.

In light of recent events, Escape Artists is declining its 2018 Parsec wins.

Escape Pod, edited by Mur Lafferty and S. B. Divya, won Best Speculative Fiction Magazine or Anthology Podcast.

PodCastle, edited by Jen R. Albert and Khaalidah Muhammad-Ali won Best Speculative Fiction Story: Small Cast (Short Form) for its production of “Six Jobs” by Tim Pratt, narrated by Stephanie Malia Morris.

EA co-owners Alasdair Stuart and Marguerite Kenner have been in consultation with both editorial teams and Mr. Pratt, and we have unanimously decided to reject both awards. We also reached out to Ms. Morris, but have not head back from her as of the time of this post.

Update 21 December: Ms. Morris also agrees with this decision, as mentioned on Twitter.

While this decision was easy to make given the circumstances, it was not made lightly. Genre podcasting is a small, intensive field, and countless people pour their efforts into these shows. We would specifically like to single out the editorial teams already mentioned in addition to hosts and assistant editors Setsu Uzume, Benjamin C. Kinney, and Tina Connolly as well as producers Peter Wood, Peter Behravesh, Adam Pracht, and Summer Brooks. Without them and the legions of other people working at every level of EA, these episodes would not exist. We would love for their hard work to be recognized and rewarded, as it richly deserves to be.

But in the current state of affairs, that can’t happen. The systemic failure of care that has taken place with this year’s Parsec Awards can’t go unanswered and this is one of the strongest ways we can express our displeasure.

No one should be made to feel unsafe or threatened. It’s maddening that such a simple concept should still be considered a stance and not embedded in the foundations of every single organization. No situation involving a group of people is apolitical; to claim to act in such a way as justification for a lack of forethought is willful ignorance.

This is also a situation which puts astonishingly unfair pressure on every winner. We empathize with our colleagues placed in this situation and offer them all our solidarity, respect, and empathy. We share the sentiments of Pendant Audio and thank the victims for their bravery in coming forward.

We choose to stand with our inclusive podcasting community. We wish the Parsec Awards had chosen to stand there as well.

Parsec Wins for Escape Pod and PodCastle!


PodCastle and Escape Pod swept up two of this year’s Parsec Awards, with Escape Pod winning Best Magazine, and PodCastle taking home Best Short Story (Small Cast, Short Form) for “Six Jobs” by Tim Pratt, narrated by Stephanie Malia Morris with host Setsu Uzume and producer Peter Wood.

The short story category was particularly excellent this year, featuring two PodCastle stories as well as a Cast of Wonders story as finalists.

Massive congratulations to all the finalists and winners!

Scam alert: Audrie Stroud


We’ve become aware that this individual is contacting artists and authors claiming to be a “creative editor and sourcer” for Escape Artists. The email we’re aware of requested the recipient’s freelance rates, and offered a permanent, full time position.

We do not know who this individual is, and they are not acting in our name. We’re disgusted our name is being hijacked in such a manner, and our hearts go out to any creatives contacted.

If you’ve received a similar message from this person, or a similar sounding request, please get in touch.

 

Jen R Albert and Khaalidah Muhammad-Ali are World Fantasy nominees!


Massive congratulations to Jen and Khaalidah for their nomination in the Special Award – Non-Professional category for PodCastle!

Nominations were sourced from members of the current year’s convention, as well as the previous two years attendees and a panel of judges. This year’s award judges are David Anthony Durham, Christopher Golden, Juliet E. McKenna, Charles Vess, and Kaaron Warren.

The winners of the 2018 World Fantasy Awards will be announced at the World Fantasy Convention, November 1-4, 2018 in Baltimore, Maryland.

 

PseudoPod shortlisted for a British Fantasy Society Award!


Following two rounds of nomination and voting from the members of the British Fantasy Society and FantasyCon, The British Fantasy Awards has reached its final jury stage.

PseudoPod has been shortlisted in the inaugural year of the Best Audio category!

Winners will be announced on 21 October 2018 at FantasyCon, the BFS annual convention.

Congratulations to Alex Hofelich, Shawn Garrett, Alasdair Stuart, Chelsea Davis, Marty Perrett and the entire PseudoPod team!