I find it vaguely amusing that I’m listening to Emilie Autumn’s newest single, “Fight Like a Girl”, while I’m starting to type this.

The husband is away fishing this weekend, so I’m on single parent duty at the moment, which means that my links post for the week will have to wait for a day or two.

And so I thought I’d take a moment to publicly one of the podcasts, and the people behind the podcast, which and who have been extremely influential both on the speculative fiction scene and on me: Galactic Suburbia.

First of all, if you’re not listening to GS already, go and download an episode.  I promise and warn you this: once you start listening to GS, you will not look at things the same.  Once you’ve seen it, you can’t unsee it.


The Galactic Suburbia team consists of Alisa Krasnostein (an engineer by day who also heads up the amazing Twelfth Planet Press – and no, I have no damn idea how she manages her time), Tansy Rayner Roberts (mother and fantasy writer, most recently of the Creature Court trilogy) and Alex Pierce (teacher and reviewer).

Actually, I have no idea how any of them manage their time, to be frank.  Lots of careful planning, one would think.  However they do it, they do a lot to contribute to the SF scene.  I can imagine that there are a decent handful of people who’ve observed a lot of the issues they have, decided it was too hard to do anything about it, and left it at that.  Alisa, Tansy and Alex decided to do something – they highlight gender and feminist issues in the community and they try to do something to change them.  And based on the fact that they just got nominated for a Hugo, well, I think they’re doing something right.

I also tend to point my finger and complain good-naturedly when I listen to each podcast and end up ordering books.  I really don’t mind, though – pretty much every book I’ve bought that they’ve talked about has ended up being amazing.  Because of them, I have a full shelf of Connie Willis books, I’ve read the Vorkosigan Saga.

More importantly, because of them, I’ve become a much more critical reader and reviewer.  I cannot look past gender issues in a book now, where once I would have been blind to them.  I’m the first to admit that I’ve had a lot ot privilege in my life.  I’m white, I’m middle-class.  I’ve had access to education, and I studied in a science field that is generally kind to, and dominated by, females.  I’ve never been told that I couldn’t do something because I was female.  This doesn’t always lead to the kind of mindset where you’re immediately aware of all gender and feminist issues.  Listening to GS is a huge part of what’s changed that for me.

I’d just like to take a moment to thank Alisa, Tansy and Alex for their time and effort (and oh, it is a lot of time and effort, given with no thought of awards or rewards), as well as the people who work behind the scenes on GS, including the silent producer.  You are all much appreciated, and you have made me a better person, reviewer and writer.