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Yesterday Galactic Suburbia put up a Very Special podcast, announcing the honours list and winner of the inaugural Galactic Suburbia Award.

Below are Tansy’s shownotes for the episode. I just wanted to say how proud and honoured I am to get to play a role with my two fabulous friends on Galactic Suburbia and how truly honoured I am to read, listen, see and hear about the feminist conversation that goes on every day *out there* on twitter, on podcasts, on blogs and flickr and tumblr and at conventions.

After much discussion, and wanting in particular to create something that wasn’t already out there in the multitudinous world of spec fic awards, we came up with this definition:

The Galactic Suburbia Award: for activism and/ or communication that advances the feminist conversation in the field of speculative fiction in 2011

We didn’t put links to the honours list and winner as show notes to the podcast, because we wanted our regular listeners to have at least SOME sense of anticipation as they listened, but now it’s well and truly out there, so here is the list:

Honours List

Carrie Goldman and her daughter Katie, for sharing their story about how Katie was bullied at school for liking Star Wars, and opening up a massive worldwide conversation about gender binaries and gender-related bullying among very young children.

Cheryl Morgan for Female Invisibility Bingo, associated blogging and podcasting, and basically fighting the good fight

Helen Merrick, for the Feminism article on the SF Encyclopedia

Jim C Hines for “Jane C Hines” and associated blogging, raising awareness of feminist issues in the SF/Fantasy publishing field.

Julia Rios, Kirstyn McDermott and Ian Mond for Episode 11 of the Outer Alliance podcast (The Writer and the Critic special episode)

L. Timmel Duchamp – for continuing to raise issues of importance on the Ambling Down the Aqueduct blog and various Aqueduct Press projects

Michelle Lee for the blog post “A 7-year-old girl responds to DC Comics’ sexed-up reboot of Starfire


Nicola Griffith – for the Russ Pledge, and associated blogging

The winner will receive a Deepings Doll hand-painted figurine of a suffragette with a Galactic Suburbia placard, hand-painted by Jilli Roberts of Pendlerook Designs. (Tansy’s very talented mother!) Each Deepings Doll is individual, so the one each winner will receive (we do plan to make this an annual tradition) will be unique.

If you have ideas for our Honours list for 2012, please email us at or tweet @galacticsuburbs

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The new episode is up! Go fetch it and consume it with digital gusto!

In which women aren’t funny, don’t write important books, but come in handy as assassins and thieves.


Connie Willis named SFWA Grand Master

Liz Bourke on Strange Horizons & the art of the mean review

Survey shows that men (as well as women) often play characters of the other gender while gaming – in many cases, men are bored with or alienated by the big musclebound male characters, which game designers think they want. Sound familiar?

Hoyden about Town are asking for guest bloggers to crosspost their Australian Women Writers Challenge reviews on Hoyden (ASIF also keen to do so)

More on feminine tosh
: a good solid article in the Australian media (shock!) about the women in literature issues of recent months (and, you know, decades).

Have we been following the “Women aren’t funny” stoush that played out in NYT? This interesting development.

DC Comics – cancellations & new titles – Tansy is especially excited by World’s Finest (featuring the Earth 2 Huntress & Power Girl)

Stranger with My Face – Women in Horror film festival in Hobart, Tasmania – 17-19 February

Tansy’s book launch for Reign of Beasts
(Creature Court Book Three) on 2 February at Hobart Bookshop, 5:30pm.

What Culture Have we Consumed?

Alex: Ashes to Ashes season 2; Dr Who season 1; Rocannon’s World, Ursula le Guin; The Declaration, Gemma Malley; Grey, Jon Armstrong; The Collected Works of TS Spivet, Reif Larsen. BBC 4 “Cat Women of the Moon” podcast

Destination: Nerva (Big Finish, audio), Astonishing X-Men by Joss Whedon, The Name of the Star by Maureen Johnson, DVD Extras Include Murder, by Nev Fountain

Alisa: absorbed in novel submissions; The Big Bang Theory; Swordspoint Audiobook, written and performed by Ellen Kushner

GS Award will be proclaimed… in a short while!

Winner of Alex’s Yarn giveaway: Jo

Tansy: Creature Court trilogy give away!
Email to tell us about one book you read after we talked about it on GS to be eligible

Please send feedback to us at, follow us on Twitter at @galacticsuburbs, check out Galactic Suburbia Podcast on Facebook and don’t forget to leave a review on iTunes if you love us!


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On the latest episode of Galactic Suburbia I mentioned I’m about to start working through a Stephen King reading list, given to me by Kirstyn from the Writer and the Critic. Tansy thought others might want to follow along. So here it is:

  1. Carrie
  2. Salem’s Lot
  3. The Shining
  4. Different Seasons – but only The Body and Shawshank therein. Do NOT read Apt Pupil, Alisa!
  5. Thinner (published under Richard Bachman)
  6. IT
  7. Eyes of the Dragon
  8. Misery
  9. Bag of Bones
  10. Duma Key
  11. The Dark Tower


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September 14   Hooray for Day 10!

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Many awesome things happened today. Some of which will have to wait for later for me to talk about! But it felt like I was on a real roll. When I woke up, I was chatting to C who told me he was done for the day at his course and I said mournfully that I had hoped he meant he was done with the course and was coming home today (wishful thinking) and then after several minutes of teasing he said, “in all seriousness, I AM coming home tonight” FOR REALZ! So I’m up waiting for my sweetie to come home tonight. Sigh. It’s been too long (don’t ask me how I’ll go with the next tour. I don’t want to think about it right now).

So I decided it was gonna be a GREAT day and I would hear some NEWS. And I did hear said news. I hope I have more on that later.

Then I had to go to the dentist. I was hoping for no fillings and I got no fillings, today. But I have four more to get. And he says I have to give up chocolate. For good. I’m not sure how that will go. I’m going to try something. Because there really is only so much pain you can have in your mouth for long periods of time.

I did get one short story proofed and back to the author today. I should probably do something more productive than what I am going to do for the next couple of hours waiting for C (Watch TV and knit).

We did also just record this fortnight’s episode of Galactic Suburbia tonight and I think I started to get somewhere on a) expressing my feelings about Doctor Who (defining and then expressing) and b) why I am still fricking watching it then. It’s starting to coalesce and that is starting to make myself feel better. I think the answer is, given our discussion on the show, I can’t not watch it, now. In any case, I think I feel better about it. And that’s a good thing. We thought we hardly had enough in he show notes for a show this fortnight, but no, no need to panic, we did just fine!

But … does anyone in Doctor Who fandom know if/where there are discussions or criticisms with a Jewish slant on Doctor Who? I’d greatly appreciate being pointed in the direction.

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EPISODE 38 Shownotes

In which none of your fearless podcasters are impregnated by mysterious aliens for the duration of a single episode, nor do any of us experience a rapidly accelerated pregnancy or give birth to an otherworldly demon/alien/vampire. Also: Batgirl, Bujold and a cranky feminist rant or two.


Cordwainer Smith Rediscovery Award – given to a living writer for the first time, Katherine MacLean.

Mythopoeic Awards

World Fantasy, of course!

World SF Travel Fund raising money to send Charles A Tan to WFC

The Mystical Pregnancy trope
- torture porn? Reproductive terrorism, exploiting women for being female.
Violent degradation of women’s bodies for plot.

Vote For Top-100 Science Fiction, Fantasy Titles
Swedish Writing Fairy crunches the numbers

Andromeda’s Offering Issue 1 – new fanzine to “open up new female voices in SF, raise the awareness of female SF writers and share ideas.”
(you can find them on Facebook apparently)

Where are the women in the new DC Comics?
newsy report
proper interview with Batgirl crusader

SF Signal Episode 70 – 6 men talk about their favourite podcasts and illustrate what we mean by gender disparity in SF gatekeeping
Alisa makes reference to recent Mind Meld

What Culture Have we Consumed?

Alisa – Passage by Connie Willis; Red Glove by Holly Black; The Lifecycle of Software Objects by Ted Chiang;
Alex - Diplomatic Immunity and Cryoburn, Bujold; Chicks Dig Time Lords, ed. Lynne Thomas; The Sparrow, Mary Doria Russell; Shades of Milk and Honey, Mary Robinette Kowal (; Songs of the Earth, Elspeth Cooper (abandoned). SF Squeecast.
Tansy – Glenda Larke-Stormlord Rising; Malinda Lo-Huntress; Penni Russon-Only, Ever, Always

lovely review at Hoyden About Town

Please send feedback to us at, follow us on Twitter at @galacticsuburbs, check out Galactic Suburbia Podcast on Facebook and don’t forget to leave a review on iTunes if you love us!


July 31   Podcast review!

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Secondly, Galactic Suburbia got an absolutely awesome review over on Hoyden About Town on Friday. I think what I love most about this review is how much it captures how I see the podcast and how well I think we are meeting what we hope the podcast to be:

And I love it that the three of them are coming from different places in the SF world – authoring, publishing, and consuming – though of course they’re all fans as well. And that they are fans of different aspects of SF, from ‘hard’ engineering science fiction to magical fantasy. And that you feel like you’re hearing part of their life, instead of actors in a studio: sometimes the baby cries, sometimes the dog barks, sometimes they need to take a break to take care of things. And most of all I love it that it feels like I’m sitting in a living room with them over cake and cocktails, and talking and joking and ranting and arguing about the cultural and fan world that simultaneously captivates and frustrates us immensely.

We love feedback to the podcast! Please keep sending it! We love hearing that you argue with us, laugh with/at us, read along with us. We love reading your stories about feminism and SF.



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- went live yesterday!


New episode up! Grab it from iTunes, by direct download or stream it on the site.

In which we discuss the SF Gateway and some great additions to the Women in SF conversation, Alex eats all the Bujold in one bite, and Alisa’s puppy does his very best to oppress us.

The Locus Awards
Prometheus Award winners
Sturgeon and Campbell Awards
Shirley Jackson Awards

Recent announcement – Gollancz announces the SF Gateway, huge project to digitise & make available thousands of SF classics as ebooks.

Linda Nagata on ‘What’s in a Name’ and her career trajectory as a female writer of hard SF
Chris Moriarty on labels in the women & SF conversation
Women and the chilly climate at Scientific American

Liz Williams at the Guardian on the way science fiction reflects human belief

Alastair Reynolds to write Doctor Who novel
: Tansy and Alex’s obsessions in one package!

What Culture Have we Consumed?

Alisa: Maureen Johnson on; Twin Peaks; Mercy (not genre but interesting feminism);
Alex: sooo much Bujold (3rd, 4th and 5th omnibi, and Memory); lots of books, because of holidays! But particularly Heartless, Gail Carriger; Blackout, Connie Willis; Hundred Thousand Kingdoms, NK Jemisin… also Harry Potter 7 and Transformers 3.
Tansy: The Demon’s Surrender, The Holy Terror & Robophobia (Big Finish), Subterranean’s YA Issue

Pet Subject: Feedback from our Joanna Russ episode

Please send feedback to us at, follow us on Twitter at @galacticsuburbs, check out Galactic Suburbia Podcast on Facebook and don’t forget to leave a review on iTunes if you love us!

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Our Joanna Russ special episode of Galactic Suburbia is up! Grab it from iTunes, by direct download or stream it on the site.


How To Suppress Women’s Writing, by Joanna Russ

The Female Man, by Joanna Russ

“When it Changed,” by Joanna Russ

Please send feedback to us at galacticsuburbia @ – we’d love to hear your stories of discovering and rediscovering Joanna Russ.

Follow us on Twitter at @galacticsuburbs, check out Galactic Suburbia Podcast on Facebook and don’t forget to leave a review on iTunes if you love us!


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I have another post to follow the last but right now I am finishing up my reading for the Special Russ Galactic Suburbia episode later tonight. Thee is nothing to soothe one’s feminist ails like reading Russ, I guess.

There used to be an odd, popular, and erroneous idea that the sub revolved around the earth.

This has been replaced by an even odder, equally popular, and equally erroneous idea that the earth goes around the sun.

In fact, the moon and the earth revolve around a common center, and this commonly-centered pair revolves with the sun around another common center, except that you must figure in all the solar planets here, so things get complicated. Then there is the motion of the solar system with regard to a great many other objects eg the galaxy and if at this point you as what does the motion of the earth really look like form the center of the entire universe, say, … the only answer is:

that is doesn’t.

Because there isn’t.


And this:

What is frightening about black art or women’s art or Chicano art – and so on – is that it calls into question the very idea of objectivity and absolute standards:

This is a good novel.

Good for what?

Good for whom?

One side of the nightmare is that the privileged group will not recognise that “other” art, will not be able to judge it, that the superiority of taste and training possessed by the privileged critic and the privileged artist will suddenly vanish.

The other side of the nightmare is not that what is found in the “other” art will be incomprehensible, but that it will be all too familiar. That is:

Women’s lives are the buried truth of men’s lives.

The lives of people of colour are the buried truth about white lives.

The buried truth about the rich is who they take their money from and how.

The buried truth about “normal” sexuality is how one kind of sexual expression has been made privileged, and what kinds of unearned virtue and terrors about identity this distinction serves.

And she goes on but you should really go read the book!

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In which “best” becomes “superior,” Pottermore is Pottermeh, one of us wins all the awards, and we visit/revisit classic non-hard works of SF and Fantasy by Bujold, Willis and Pratchett (with bonus Russian fairytales by Valente).


Pottermore announcement made during our podcast…

Theodore Sturgeon finalists

David Gemmell Awards

NatCon professional guests for next year are Kelly Link and Alison Goodman.

Chronos Awards :D

Sidewise Awards finalists

Translation Awards winners

Stoker Awards announced

Coode Street Horror Special with Stoker winners Datlow & Straub

Gender Spotting Tool – Naff.

What Culture Have we Consumed?

Alisa: Connie Willis’ Passage in progress, the next 3 Twelve Planets.
Alex: so much Bujold (Cordelia’s Honor and Young Miles omnibuses… omnibi… whatever, Fly by Night, Frances Hardinge, Red Glove, Holly Black. Series 2 of V (reboot)
Tansy: Deathless, Catherynne Valente; I Shall Wear Midnight, Terry Pratchett; Wyrd Sisters audiobook, Terry Pratchett/Celia Imrie.

Next Fortnight: Galactic Suburbia’s Spoilerific Book Club Presents: Joanna Russ. Reading How to Suppress Women’s Writing, The Female Man, “When It Changed.”

Please send feedback to us at, follow us on Twitter at @galacticsuburbs, check out Galactic Suburbia Podcast on Facebook and don’t forget to leave a review on iTunes if you love us!


Grab it from iTunes, by direct download or stream it on the site.

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May 26   

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New episode up! Grab it from iTunes, by direct download or stream it on the site.


In which we wax lyrical about awards, short stories and the love of reading. Because it’s that time of year!

Aurealis Awards winners as reported by roving reporter Tansy

Nebula Awards winners

Translation Awards

Aqueduct links to 25 commemorations of Joanna Russ

New podcast – How I got my Boyfriend to Read Comics

Last Short Story is on Twitter @lastshortstory

New Galactic Chat: Kirstyn McDermott

What Culture Have we Consumed?

Tansy: The Shattering, Karen Healey
Alex: The Wise Man’s Fear, Patrick Rothfuss; How to Suppress Women’s Writing, Joanna Russ; Welcome to Bordertown, Ellen Kushner and Terri Windling; finished Stargate SG1 for the second time.
Alisa: Ken Liu’s Paper Menagerie (F&SF March/April), Joanna Russ’s We Who Are About To

Pet Subject: Last Short Story 2011

Please send feedback to us at, follow us on Twitter at @galacticsuburbs, check out Galactic Suburbia Podcast on Facebook and don’t forget to leave a review on iTunes if you love us!

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New episode up! Grab it from iTunes, by direct download or stream it on the site.

In which we bid farewell to Joanna Russ, talk e-publishing (again) and Alisa reads a real live actual book. With bonus raving about Doctor Who and Alistair Reynolds – in other words, another episode of Galactic Suburbia.


On Joanna Russ:
Making Light
Broad Universe Samuel Delaney interviews Joanna Russ
Aqueduct Press

Barb & Jenny on e-publishing
Part 1
Part 2

Book Country launched by Penguin USA
Jim Hines on Book Country


Brimstone Press closing

Shaun Tan named judge for Illustrators of the Future
What Culture Have we Consumed?

Alisa: Madigan Mine, Kirstyn McDermott, Fringe Season 3
Alex: Deep State, Walter Jon Williams; Shattered City, and Love and Romanpunk, Tansy Rayner Roberts; Pushing Ice, Alastair Reynolds; Troubletwisters, Garth Nix and Sean Williams.
Tansy: Doctor Who & Big Finish audio plays. The Eighth Doctor Adventures.

Announcing upcoming Spoilerific Book Club on Joanna Russ with particular focus on The Female Man, How To Suppress Women’s Writing and short story “When it Changed.” Read along with us!

Galactic Chat interviews Glenda Larke
Please send feedback to us at, follow us on Twitter at @galacticsuburbs, check out Galactic Suburbia Podcast on Facebook and don’t forget to leave a review on iTunes if you love us!

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