i tried the black tapes and couldn’t get into it, i enjoyed night vale and i am looooving the bright sessions but does anyone have any recommendations for other fiction podcasts? can be spooky/preferably with at least one queer character!
I find scripted fiction podcasts is often quite offputtingly stiff for me, so my favourites are all actual play tabletop podcasts.
Friends at the Table is an obvious rec because of Austin’s involvement, but it’s a great podcast about sadness and robots/swords (delete as appropriate). They also treat their queer characters well. The current producer Ali has a good guide on where to start listening:
Campaign is a podcast from the One Shot network set in the Star Wars universe. Don’t worry, you don’t need to know anything about Star Wars really. I don’t either, it just means I occasionally have to google a species name or ignore a joke I don’t get.
They’re improvisors and great collaborators, so their show is a great exercise in showing players and a GM building a story together and compounding on people’s ideas. I love the characters, though Tryst is the archetypical womanising type of dude and I’m not always on board with how he acts, even if he’s never really rewarded for it.
The Adventure Zone is a DnD podcast from the McElroys that’s a bit slow to start as they’re pretty new to it. But it’s funny and entertaining, with some fun narrative stings and emotional moments later on.
You seem to be looking for something serialized, so these suggestions might not appeal to you, but: most of the pro science fiction and fantasy short fiction magazines publish audio versions of their stories. I recommend:
Podcastle, Pseudopod, Escape Pod (a network of audio-only magazines, each specializing in a different subgenre)
Beneath Ceaseless Skies
Cast of Wonders (YA-focused short fiction)
Flash Fiction Online
There are almost as many podcasts as there are short fiction magazines—which is to say, a lot—so I only listed my favorites.
Hope this helps!
Oh man, yes. Both are pseudo-documentary and structured sort of like Serial, but are absolutely incredible
And that’s all you need to know.
I’ve started listening to The Box podcast and it’s pretty good so far, an employee at a book store finds a box full of “paranormal agent” field reports and reads and investigates the reports. I was a little put off by the writing in the first couple episodes but it quickly gets more interesting. My fiance loves it and insisted I start listening. I really enjoyed the black tapes though so ymmv
These may not be quite what you’re looking for, but That American Life was a spot but short-lived spoof of WBEZ Chicago’s podcast This American Life.
And if you don’t mind literary fiction, then there’s The New Yorker: Fiction podcast.
You might also like The Message. It’s a little spooky and more in line with podcasts like Black Tapes and Night Vale.
Yes! Another Campaign listener! I love that show, and those folks are very good. I agree that Tryst can go a little overboard sometimes, but for the most part they are good at reining him in.
Also second the Adventure Zone. Man, that series has really turned into something special. It’s pretty interesting to hear them talk about how they changed as players as the game went on as well.
If you like the Mouse Guard comic, there’s a podcast called Mouse Guardians that I enjoyed. They are currently on a hiatus I think. I hope they come back soon.
I don’t know what the Mouse Guard comic is, but I’ll give it a listen!
i already am deeply in love with the adventure zone and i think i’ll need to dive into friends at the table soon, thanks!
i get back into wolf 359 every few months. They’re short episodes and I can usually get through a couple dozen before I need another break. It’s a little more cosmic horror-y than I usually like in a podcast?
also maybe I should get back into Hello From The Magic Tavern now that it’s actually progressing through the plot.
I’m a bit behind on Welcome to Night Vale (last episode I heard was 100), but I still consider it pretty good. You hear people say it’s gone downhill, and I agree it hasn’t had a really strong emotional height since the Strex arc (26-50), but I still find it fairly enjoyable, and I’ve heard the last few episodes have been really strong plot-wise.
Also gonna re-recommend Adventure Zone, which has gotten really fabulous. The first arc is kind of a slog at times- the plot and characters are clearly still being worked out- but once you get through that it’s pretty much smooth sailing to most people.
EDIT: And now I’m seeing that you’ve heard both of these! Well, to other folks reading, these are still my recs.
Edit: I see you know about Night Vale, but I’ll leave this up in case you didn’t give it a listen.
Alice Isn’t Dead
"A truck driver searches across America for the wife she had long assumed was dead. In the course of her search, she will encounter not-quite-human serial murderers, towns literally lost in time, and a conspiracy that goes way beyond one missing woman."
From the same network, but a very different story. Season 1 was very good (creepy and atmospheric stories) and Season 2 just started.
It’s funny you say that because it has gotten really good again post episode 100, some of the best episodes of the series. I highly recommend getting back into it.
thanks for all the recs folks! making a very thorough list on my phone for when i finish going through my second adventure zone listen
Try audiobooks! My public library offers digital loans for ebooks and audio books so it’s free and easy.
I prefer print, but audiobooks are great for work and some titles really shine in this format.
World War Z was amazing as an audiobook. It’s written in a documentary style, and I think the audio format really enhanced that. I thought it sounded like a long NPR special.
Orson Scott Card’s Alvin the Maker series is also great in this format because it’s at least partly framed as of it was part of an oral story tradition.
oooh i tried to read world war z a while ago and it scared me a bit too much but that is a good shout!
I’ve listened to most of shows in this thread and second the recommendations, but here’s some more: Archive 81 - a horror podcast about a student archiving spooky audio in a government facility, that then takes a hard turn into the Lovecraftian in series 2. It’s definitely different!
The Penumbra Podcast: lots of serialised fiction, but the standout story is Juno Steel, about a morose Private Eye… who’s bisexual and on Mars. The early episodes have dodgy sound quality and I’d skip the first story altogether but they’re pretty fun, overall.
Finally there’s Homecoming, which definitely feels like more Highbrow Audio Drama than the other two. It’s best to go in blind so I won’t say any more, but it’s really good.
I’ll second what @Oneidensis says about Homecoming - it well and truly wrecked and surprised me.
However, I’ve gotta voice mild dissent on Archive 81. Some of the acting and the hokiness of the S1 climax broke the whole thing for me. YMMV.
I’m behind so it could’ve totally jumped the audioshark, but I have really enjoyed what I’ve heard of Life.After! It’s by the same team that did The Message but it feels much better paced and fully drawn.
Oh yeah, I’d definitely add that Archive 81 is not top-tier on characters or performance, but the world will probably appeal to fans of Night Vale.
And I’d never heard of Life after, so that’s going on the subscription list, thanks!