Back in 2009, I published a short story (“On a Clear Day You Can See All the Way to Conspiracy”) about alleged flying saucers over Cleveland, written in the form of an afternoon radio call-in show. This appeared on the website SFReader. In retrospect, it cried out to exist in audio format, as it’s practically tailor-made for that (this was even pointed out to me at the time, but I’ve always been a slow adapter, and it was some time before I was on board with this “podcast” business). The story eventually appeared on the pioneering SF podcast Escape Pod in 2011, gamely narrated by Joshua McNichols.
And yet, in the back of my mind, I felt that the tale could aspire to something even greater. Along came the Drabblecast and its intrepid editor Norm Sherman, who adapted the story once again in 2014, this time with a full cast (including Dave Robison, Mike Boris, Rish Outfield, Mat Weller, Nathan Lee, Ray Sizemore, and numerous podcast listeners portraying Cleveland denizens calling in to the show) and that inimitable Drabblecast/Norm Sherman audio production that longtime listeners will know so well. I’m biased, but I consider it nothing less than a masterpiece of SF audio fiction.
Earlier this week, Norm resurrected “On a Clear Day You Can See All the Way to Conspiracy” for his occasional Drabblecast Director’s Cut feature, wherein he plays a favorite story and then interviews the author about the piece as well as whatever other subjects happen to arise. Needless to say, I have intense hatred for the sound of my own voice, so as of this writing, I have yet to listen to the interview; moreover, I probably won’t do so until I have the chance to get a few drinks in me (at least as many as it took to work up the motivation to do the interview to begin with). Most people, however, have no idea whether they can stand my voice, and this would be an excellent chance to find out; so feel free to give it a listen.
(N.B. On the off-chance that “On a Clear Day You Can See All the Way to Conspiracy” is your favorite story [and why not? Any story might be one person’s favorite story], and you’re just dying to see it in actual print, it did in fact appear in Quickfic Anthology 2: Shorter-Short Speculative Fiction from Digital Fiction Publishing in 2016. [Of course, if you had clicked on the “Bibliography” tab above, you’d already know that.] Right now Amazon has the paperback in stock at a price of $2.94; why so low, I have no idea, but there you go.)