Ok folks, you know who the Top 10 Horror Story Podcasts are, and now you can feast upon the best audio storytelling Sci-Fi has to offer- well, the free stuff anyway.
Most of these sites are Sci-Fi specific, not horror/Sci-Fi specific, so I also added a couple of my favorite listens from each that fit the Horror Made way.
So grab your spacesuits and strap in!
Keywords: Audio books, Link lists, Resources
About: Open Culture is a MASSIVE collection of free digital content that covers a huge spectrum. Textbooks, Fiction, Audio books, ebooks, and online courses. It’s a fantastic site to get lost on with new gems hidden everywhere.
Here’s the link for a site search I did on Science Fiction Horror Audio books to help you on your journey of discovery.
About: This is an article they posted on Open Culture that leads you into the land of Archive.org where you can listen to the whole collection of the old time radio show Mind Webs.
Keywords: Audio Books, Public Domain
Librivox is a very cool project where people volunteer to read/record the audio versions of public domain books. Fiction, non-fiction, children’s books, it runs the gambut.
It’s a great resource, but the audio quality is hit-or-miss. Sometimes you have a fantastic reader, other times the recording is hissy or the reader’s performance is a bit lacking. One book will often have multiple readers, so the listening experience is unique that way.
One of the aspects I love about that patchwork style of readers is you get to hear accents from all over the world. One of the side projects I’d love to do is have a list of where each reader is from so actors can find the reader and have a really thorough way of learning a new accent. American, Georgian, Australian, Various regions all over the UK. It’s a lot of fun.
Title: 3 Science Fiction Stories
Author: Gerald Vance
Three Science Fiction stories by the great Gerald Vance: Monsoons of Death is a very nice blend of horror story and a study of true bravery on the planet Mars. A newly commissioned lieutenant finds out a lot about both! In Larson’s Luck, Vance takes us on a light hearted jaunt into hot shot space ship pilots, piracy and the good part of breaking the rules. The last story, Vital Ingredient, takes the listener far into the future when the sport of boxing still has two muscled opponents battling it out in a ring, but they are simply puppets, every muscle, feint and jab controlled by ring side ‘managers’; ex fighters who have moved up. The story asks the question: is this how champions are made? and answers it of course in a most satisfying manner.
Summary by Phil chenevert
10) Relic Radio Sci-Fi
Keywords: Old time radio, podcast, Horror, Science Fiction, Mystery, 24/7 livestream, & more
About: Old time radio made available in the present day. They produce content of many genres, but they all come from the radio archives of history.
Relic Radio features classic radio drama through a number of regularly updated podcasts, and an internet radio station. [facebook.com/RelicRadioShows/info]
Like many old time radio podcasts the audio quality varies per episode, but the stories and old shows that they share are a delightful slice of Sci-Fi history.
A not-too-bright chap decides to obtain instant culture. He volunteers for a scientific experiment. Joe and Clarice had been out and had a nice evening and now Joe was after more and proposed to Clarice. Clarice refused as she felt Joe was uneducated and suggested that he discover some culture. Meanwhile, a professor had invented a machine which could take a tape recording of a human voice reading facts and figures on anything and transform it from sound waves into electrical waves and then with electrodes through the human head charge that brain with the waves so that automatically that person would get information charged into his memory. All he needed now was a human volunteer. [oldtimeradiodownloads.com]
Keywords: Audio fiction Magazine, genre fiction, horror, science fiction, fantasy, Talk Show
About: Dunesteef is and Genre Audio Fiction magazine with a new piece of free audio fiction on a regular basis. Sci-Fi, Fantasy, and Horror all have a home here.
I really enjoy the banter between the hosts in each episode and they pick some stellar stories to feature on their shows.
First contact between humans and a being from another planet happens in the New Mexico desert, near a nuclear testing range. The humans are a group of wide-eyed teenagers, and the otherworldly being calls itself Hotkas. Hotkas does not come in peace. [dunesteef.com]
8) Sci-Fi Radio Theater
Keywords: Audio Theater, Noir Detective,Robots
Although there won’t be anymore episodes being made, the two seasons that exist online are totally worth checking out.
I’ve made my way through the first season, The Ba Gua Etuis Box, and I’m looking forward to listening to Hyper Nocturnal. Each season is an episodic continuation of one story and it’s a fully produced audio drama. Sound effects, music, voice acting. It’s a lot of fun to listen to, and the story is particularly well written.
7) Star Ship Sofa
Keywords: Talk Show, Short Stories, Sci-Fi
Star Ship Sofa is a very fun mix between NPR Science Fridays and story time. I love the guests they have on their show and the conversations they have about Science, Space, and Science Fiction. They also do a really kick-ass job with their story selections and audio production.
The short fiction is “Summer Home” by Sue Burke with narration by J. S. Arquin
About: A journey into the fallout after a huge disaster occurs
The main fiction is “An Immense Darkness” by Eric James Stone with narration by Rob Matheny.
About: A.I. and torture go to a very new and disturbing place in the name of national security.
Keywords: Audiobooks, multiple authors, platforms, and genres
Ah, Podiobooks. My new favorite source for free audiobooks.
Podiobooks, as opposed to librivox, seems to have a more cohesive and consistent quality to the books they host and I’ve been having fun getting lost in their catalogue. Quarter Share and it’s sequels by Nathan Lowell was my introduction to the site. I really enjoyed that series although it’s not something I’d recommend to everyone because it’s a studiously paced slice-of-life story.
I’ll post a full review on a later date, but if you like “The Thing” or Science-heavy sci-fi that deals with genetic engineering gone wrong, you’re going to love this.
On a remote island in the Canadian Arctic, P.J. Colding leads a team of scientists who have discovered this holy grail of medicine. By reverse engineering the genomes of thousands of mammals, Colding’s team has dialed back the evolutionary clock to re-create their common ancestor. The method? Illegal. The result? A computer engineered living creature — an animal whose organs can be permanently transplanted into anyone with zero chance of rejection.
There’s just one problem: these ancestors turn out not to be the docile herd animals Colding’s team envisioned. Instead, Colding’s work has given birth to something big, something evil.
……AND IT’S VERY, VERY HUNGRY! [http://podiobooks.com/title/ancestor/]
5) Transmissions from Colony One – A New Dawn Rises
Keywords: Episodic, Fiction, Mars, Colony, Exploration
Listening to this podcast is like tuning into radio transmissions from the first astronauts settling on another Mars.
Sometimes that style works against it, because there is a lot of atmospheric background noise and people talking over each other (at least in episode 1). That style does calm down a bit as the story progresses and it gets easier to get immersed in the story.
If you have ever heard the original broadcast of War of the Worlds (available here if you haven’t because you should absolutely hear it.) Transmissions from Colony One has the same realistic broadcast feel to it. This is an ongoing story, so start at episode 1 and work your way forward. And man, it’s a fascinating one that I was quickly captivated by.
4) Lightspeed Magazine
Keywords: Audio Fiction Magazine, Science Fiction, Fantasy
Now that we’re into the top 4 slots of this list, you will only find professional sounding audio whenever you tune in. Starting with Lightspeed Magazine.
Lightspeed is a science fiction and fantasy magazine. In its pages, you will find science fiction: from near-future, sociological soft SF, to far-future, star-spanning hard SF—and fantasy: from epic fantasy, sword-and-sorcery, and contemporary urban tales, to magical realism, science-fantasy, and folktales. […] Lightspeed also includes feature interviews, fiction podcasts, and Q&As with our authors that go behind-the-scenes of their stories.
Secondhand Bodies by Jy Yang
About: “Admit it, the only option left for that body is getting rid of it.” Cousin Aloysius says this as he sprawls uninvited along the length of my bed, and I hate him for that.
3) Drabble Cast
Keywords: Audio fiction, podcast, Science Fiction, Fantasy, Horror
This is one podcast I had played with adding to the Top Horror Podcasts list, but in my mind it’s the SCi-Fi and Fantasy that really makes this one stand out.
The Drabblecast is a weekly podcast featuring flash fictions from a variety of genres. Its singular message is that of off beat, funny, eclecticism.[www.drabblecast.org/about_us]
There are two things I love, and one is the tiny grey owl outside my window. He is not afraid of me. He hoots and hops to my windowsill so I can stroke his downy head and feed him worms I’ve saved in my pocket.
It is hard to get the worms from my pocket, the way my left arm jerks up behind me and my right hand shakes. Often fat mister owl gets a half a worm, but he doesn’t mind. Mother minds picking the half-worms from my pockets, but I see how she looks at me when I calm my tremoring hand long enough to pat mister owl; I see how she loves me then. [www.drabblecast.org]
2) Clarkesworld Magazine
Keywords: Science Fiction and Fantasy Magazine, Podcast
About: This magazine is guaranteed to knock your socks off. On a regular basis.
Clarkesworld is a monthly science fiction and fantasy magazine first published in October 2006. Each issue contains interviews, thought-provoking articles, two reprints, and at least four or five works of original fiction. Clarkesworld has been recognized with a World Fantasy Award, three Hugo Awards, and a British Fantasy Award. Our fiction has been nominated for or won the Hugo, Nebula, World Fantasy, BSFA, Sturgeon, Locus, Shirley Jackson, Ditmar, Aurora, Aurealis, WSFA Small Press and Stoker Awards. [clarkesworldmagazine.com/staff]
About: Something new is discovered on Europa. Now, the challenge is getting away.
Keywords: Podcast, Audio magazine, Science Fiction
Even with everything I listen to, this pocast is one of my favorites anywhere. I love their story selections, their Artemis Rising series (All women and non-gender binary authors), and in particular the relationship they have with their audience. There’s always a fascinating discussion going on in their forums that keeps the stories going long after you listen.
Escape Pod is the premier science fiction podcast magazine. Every week we bring you short stories from some of today’s best science fiction stories, in convenient audio format for your computer or MP3 player. [escapepod.org/about]
About: Religions on new worlds. Mostly thought-provoking with some graphic violence hidden in the middle.