Archive for Announcements

BREAKING! Escape Pod is a Finalist for the Hugo Award! As is Alasdair Stuart!

Twice means it’s not a fluke! We are thrilled to announce that Escape Pod is again a finalist for the Hugo Award for Best Semiprozine! Our excellent team’s work of fifteen years has led up to this recognition, and we’re so grateful to those who nominated us! We would be nothing without you, our authors who trust us to bring their stories to our audience, and our narrators who help us get the stories there.

In extra special news, one of our hosts and owner of Escape Artists himself, Alasdair Stuart, was nominated for the Hugo for Best Fan Writer! Congrats, Alasdair! Other Escape Artists staff or alum nominees include Sarah Gailey and Shiv Ramdas!

Unfortunately, because of the COVID-19 global pandemic crisis, WorldCon 2020 has moved to a virtual convention. However, the con staff is working hard to bring the best virtual convention they can, which will hopefully include some of the Escape Pod team as part of programming. If you have a membership, please consider keeping it to support the con, be able to access the virtual programming, and to keep your Hugo voting rights!

Here’s the full 2020 ballot.

Congratulations to all of the finalists!

Thank you from the bottoms of our heart for your support!

Flash Fiction Contest 2020

It’s no joke: Escape Pod’s Flash Fiction contest returns on April 1, 2020!

Submissions will be open from April 1-15, 2020, via a dedicated portal on Moksha.

To be a valid submission to the contest, each story must adhere to the following rules:

  1. The story must be no more than 500 words long, not including its title. Do not use the title to skirt around the word count. Word count will be determined using Scrivener.
  2. Each author may submit only ONE story.
  3. The story must adhere to the general Escape Pod submission guidelines. Most importantly, it needs to be a science fiction story; other genres, including horror and fantasy, are discouraged. As a general rule, we will take a very liberal view of what constitutes science fiction, but authors should note that experience shows that stories that attempt to skirt the genre restriction tend to fare badly in the voting.
  4. The story must be original and previously unpublished. If your story was published on your public blog or your Patreon or in your newsletter, it is considered previously published and is ineligible. If it has been posted only to a private critique group, it has not been previously published and is eligible. If you have a question, send a query to with the subject line “QUERY” and ask before submitting. Please do not submit stories that have been entries in any previous Escape Artists contest. Note that contest stories will be posted on a members-only portion of the forum, so first publication rights will not be spent by entering.
  5. The person submitting the story must be the story’s author (or acting for the author with express permission) and hold full publishing rights to the story.
  6. The story must be submitted in its final form, as the author intends it to be read by the voting public. We will not allow authors to submit changes to stories.
  7. The title, byline, and text should be included in the submission. Any byline will be stripped when the stories are posted in the contest, and will be revealed when the story does not advance, or at the close of the contest. Feel free to use a pseudonym for the byline, but we will need a legal name if you win for the contract.
  8. Authors under 18 are welcome. By submitting, any author under 18 asserts they have obtained the permission of a parent or guardian with whom Escape Artists, Inc. can enter into a contract on behalf of the author.

The three stories with the highest votes will be published on Escape Pod. Authors will be paid $40 USD, making this a pro sale of at least eight cents a word.

Please share widely and loudly!

“Escape Pod: The Science Fiction Anthology” From Titan Books

Attention Escape Pod fans! We are so happy to announce our first ever print anthology, coming in October, 2020, from Titan Books, to honor our 15 years of podcasting. Please spread the word and get ready to pre-order!

Escape Artists and Titan Books are delighted to announce the upcoming publication of Escape Pod: The Science Fiction Anthology to celebrate the fifteenth anniversary of the hit podcast of the same name. Featuring new and exclusive stories from today’s bestselling writers, the collection will publish October 2020 and is the latest addition to Titan Books’ award winning anthology list that includes editors such as George R.R. Martin and Gardner Dozois, Mark Morris, Christopher Golden and Rachel Autumn Deering, & Paul Kane and Marie O’Regan.

Escape Pod has been bringing the finest short fiction to millions all over the world, at the forefront of a new fiction revolution. Founded in 2005 by Serah Eley, Escape Pod is the world’s oldest audio fiction podcast and was a Hugo Award finalist in 2017. Specializing in science fiction, the podcast gives its audience a different story each week that’s fun and engaging, with thought-provoking afterwords from its episode hosts.

This anthology gathers together stories from writers such as Cory Doctorow, Ken Liu, Mary Robinette Kowal, John Scalzi, and more, including nine works of original fiction. Editors Mur Lafferty and S.B. Divya have produced the science fiction collection of the year, bringing together bestselling authors in celebration of the publishing phenomenon that is Escape Pod.

9781789095012 | October 20 2020 | Paperback | £8.99/$14.95 | 368pp

2019 Year in Review and Award Eligibility

In 2019, Escape Pod published 18 original science fiction stories and 30 reprint stories. If you are nominating and/or voting for these awards, please consider our original publications for the Short Story category of the Hugo and Nebula Awards, among others. The full list is below!

Escape Pod is eligible for the Best Semiprozine Hugo Award. 2019 staff include Co-Editors Mur Lafferty and S.B. Divya, Assistant Editor Benjamin C. Kinney, and Audio Producers Adam Pracht and Summer Brooks.

Mur Lafferty and S.B. Divya are also eligible for the Best Editor (Short Form) Hugo Award. (Please nominate both on same ballot.)

A list of current Escape Pod staff is available here, including our Guest Hosts, Tina Connolly and Alasdair Stuart. We are very proud of our crew and the work we’ve done, and we thank you for joining us in this orbit around the sun.

— Mur Lafferty & S.B. Divya

Original Short Stories

Another Day in the Desert by Mame Bougouma Diene
The Day Girl by Rivqa Rafael
This Wine-Dark Feeling That Isn’t The Blues by José Pablo Iriarte

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Artemis Rising: A Hiatus

For the past 5 years, September has been the month where we open to Artemis Rising submissions. In case you have been eagerly anticipating this, or Artemis Rising 6 in 2020, we have some news:

All of Escape Artists is taking a hiatus to think about how best to move forward with this project in a way that serves our listeners, authors, and staff in the best way we can. Please read the full details in the post above!

Artemis Rising 5

Escape Pod is proud to present the fifth annual Artemis Rising event through the month of March, 2019! We have four stories this year, guest-edited by our Associate Editors, Laura Pearlman and S. Kay Nash.

You can find the full list of all the Artemis Rising stories across all four podcasts here as they become available:

This year’s artwork is by Yuumei, an illustrator, comic artists and designer. Her work includes Knite and Fisheye Placebo, the webcome comic Axent Wear Cat Ear Headphones and various other pieces exploring environmentalism, fantasy and nature.

You can read her comics for free at, follow her on Twitter and Instagram, or support her on Patreon.

Special thanks also to Matt Dovey for his illustration and design work for this year’s event.



2018 Year in Review and Awards Eligibility

In 2018, Escape Pod published a number of original and reprint science fiction stories. If you are nominating and/or voting for these awards, please consider our original publications for the Short Story category of the Hugo and Nebula Awards, among others. The full list is below!

Escape Pod is eligible for the Best Semiprozine Hugo Award. 2018 staff include Co-Editors Mur Lafferty and S.B. Divya, Assistant Editor Benjamin C. Kinney, and Audio Producers Adam Pracht and Summer Brooks.

Mur Lafferty and S.B. Divya are also eligible for the Best Editor (Short Form) Hugo Award. (Please nominate both on same ballot.)

A full list of current Escape Pod staff is available here, including our Guest Editors for Artemis Rising 4, S. Kay Nash and Laura Pearlman, and our Guest Hosts, Tina Connolly and Alasdair Stuart. We are very proud of our crew and the work we’ve done, and we thank you for joining us in this orbit around the sun.

— Mur Lafferty & S.B. Divya

Original Short Stories

Wasps Make Honey (3500 words) by Penelope Evans
Sweetness at the End (2600 words) by Jenny Rae Rappaport
The Sixes, The Wisdom, and the Wasp
 (5500 words) by E.J. Delaney
A Cure for Homesickness (5970 words) by S. L. Scott
All Profound and Logical Minds (5900 words) by Bennett North
A Study in Symmetry, or the Chance Encounter of an Android and a Painter (4300 words) by Jamie Lackey
Promise (5400 words) by Christi Nogle
Assistance (5500 words) by Kathryn DeFazio
Surveillance Fatigue (2200 words) by Jennifer R. Donahue
Humans Die, Stars Fade (3700 words) by Charles Payseur
After Midnight at the Zap Stop (5200 words) by Matthew Claxton
Me, Meg, and The Thing (6000 words) by Gian-Paul Bergeron
Toastmaster (500 words) by Kurt Pankau
Dollhouse (500 words) by Karen Osborne
Kaiju Outside Hope (500 words) by Maria Haskins
So Sorry You’re Going Extinct! (470 words) by Paul R Hardy
Subtle Ways Each Time (2100 words) by Y.M. Pang
Loyalty Test (2500 words) by Andrew Gudgel
Beatrix Released (6000 words) by Shaenon Garrity
Hoping for Red (3800 words) by Adam Knight

Reprint Short Stories (first published in 2018)

Heart of Ash, Heart of Steam (3500 words) by Malon Edwards – first published in Steampunk Universe, Jan 2, 2018
Mother Tongues (3700 words) by S. Qiouyu Li – first published in Asimov’s, January 2018

Reprint Short Stories (first published in 2017 or earlier)

When We Fall (5200 words) by Kameron Hurley
Cat Pictures, Please (3400 words) by Naomi Kritzer
Sparg (2000 words) by Brian Trent
Lonely Robot On A Rocket Ship In Space (4300 words) by A. Merc Rustad
My Generations Shall Praise (5500 words) by Samantha Henderson
Anna and Marisol in Time and Space (7200 words) by Tim Pratt
Fandom for Robots (3600 words) by Vina Jie-Min Prasad
Fire Rode the Cold Wind (4400 words) by Aimee Ogden
The Endangered Camp (4000 words) by Ann Leckie
An Advanced Reader’s Picture Book of Comparative Cognition (46oo words) by Ken Liu
Lucky Shot (13400 words) by Gerri Leen
At the Village Vanguard (Ruminations on Blacktopia) (4800 words) by Maurice Broaddus
Paradise Regained (5900 words) by Edward Lerner
Oracle (3600 words) by Dominica Phetteplace
The Revolution, Brought to You by Nike (9900 words) by Andrea Phillips
A Handful of Dal (1500 words) by Naru Sundar
Some Things I Probably Should Have Mentioned Earlier (1700 words) by Laura Pearlman
And Then There Were (N-One) (19350 words) by Sarah Pinsker
The Big So-So (5200 words) by Erika Satifka
Caesura (3700 words) by Hayley Stone

Flashback Fridays

Herd Mentality By Jay Caselberg
Midnight Blue By Will McIntosh
On a Clear Day You can See All the Way to Conspiracy By Desmond Warzel
Ulla By Daniel Schwabauer
Disarm By Vylar Kaftan
Imma Gonna Finish You Off by Marina J. Lostetter
Impossible Dreams By Tim Pratt
Into the Breach By Malon Edwards

Holiday Special Submissions Call: Now open!

Escape Pod is looking for a holiday-themed story to run at the end of the year. We are accepting reprints and originals for this limited submissions call, which will run from Oct 1 – Oct 15, 2018.

Stories should follow our general guidelines for subject matter, anonymization, and word count. They should also incorporate an existing holiday that could take place in November or December by an Earth-based Gregorian calendar (holidays that move around based on other calendars are okay if they might fall during this time period).

If you have a story in our general submissions that you would like considered for the special call, let us know by email to, otherwise, please use the Submittable portal below for our Holiday Special.

Holiday Special

On Inclusion and Artemis Rising: An Apology

It has come to our attention, through multiple channels, that the current incarnation of Artemis Rising 5 has caused harm to members of our community.

Thanks to Bogi Takács’s eloquent explanation of how to bring more voices to the table, we are examining the best way to repair the trust we’ve broken. We appreciate the conversations happening on various platforms and thank you for allowing us to participate in them.

Artemis Rising’s aims have always been to highlight the work of underrepresented genre authors and provide training and progression opportunities to junior members of the Escape Artist family who are members of traditionally marginalized groups. The underrepresented groups that we’ve chosen to focus on have changed over time and are likely to continue to change from year to year.

This year, we failed to consider the effect this change would have on people who were previously eligible to submit but were not eligible this year.

Artemis Rising’s submission portals will remain open and stories are being read while we consider how best to move forward, but we feel it is imperative to urgently acknowledge our mistake.

We apologize for the exclusion and hurt caused by this year’s call. We appreciate the feedback we’ve received; to everyone who voiced their objections, thank you for giving us a chance to correct our error. We hear you.

Escape Artists editors

Escape Pod: S.B. Divya & Mur Lafferty
PseudoPod: Shawn Garrett & Alex Hofelich
PodCastle: Jen R. Albert & Khaalidah Muhammad-Ali (and assistant editor Setsu Uzume)
Cast of Wonders: Marguerite Kenner

The 2018 Artemis Rising editors

Escape Pod: S. Kay Nash & Laura Pearlman
PseudoPod: Cecilia Dockins & Tonia Thompson
PodCastle: Krystal Claxton & Elora Gatts
Cast of Wonders: Amy Brennan & Karissa Sluss

Announcing Artemis Rising 5

In March 2019, Escape Pod will bring you ARTEMIS RISING for a fifth year. This special month-long event, across all four Escape Artists podcasts, is a celebration of stories written by women, in the broadest definition of the word.

ARTEMIS RISING specifically highlights women in genre fiction, a demographic that has been underrepresented until recent years. This showcase helps to address that historical imbalance and correct the impression, which continues to persist in some social circles, that women cannot write excellent science fiction.

Guest Editors

We are pleased to announce that last year’s guest editors, Laura Pearlman and S. Kay Nash, will reprise their roles for 2019.

Who Can Submit

Submissions are open to anyone who identifies as a woman to any degree.

In past years, we have specifically included the term “non-binary” in our Artemis Rising submission calls — you may notice it is missing this year.

English is flawed in its ability to accurately represent the breadth of human genders, and as such the language we use is always evolving. We respect the feedback that we’ve received regarding our use of “non-binary” as a catch-all: that it erroneously tilts the perception of non-binary people in a feminine direction.

In a continuing effort to support diversity and inclusivity, we’re changing the language of our ARTEMIS RISING call. Non-binary authors who identify as women are welcome to submit. Your gender is for you to determine, and we support you and take you at your word.

Please note we’re talking about author identity here, not pen names. We fully respect the right of authors to use whatever pen names they like. However, as we note in our Legalese, we require information in the submission form be accurate and truthful.

As always, we strongly encourage submissions from people of backgrounds that have been historically under-represented or excluded from traditional science fiction, including, but not limited to, people of color, LGBTQ authors, persons with disabilities, members of religious minorities, and people from outside the United States. Our goal is to publish fiction that reflects the diversity of humanity, so we strongly encourage submissions from these and any other under-represented groups.

What to Submit

Send in your best science fiction between 1,500–6,000 words. Original fiction as well as reprints are welcome this year. Payment will be USD $0.06 per word for original fiction, $100 for reprints.

If you have another story under consideration already in the general submissions queue, you are welcome to submit an additional story for ARTEMIS RISING. One submission per portal for a total of two under consideration.

Multiple and/or simultaneous submissions are not accepted.

You can send in one submission for ARTEMIS RISING to each of our podcasts (Escape Pod for science fiction, PseudoPod for horror, PodCastle for fantasy, and Cast of Wonders for young adult), but please don’t send the same story to more than one podcast at a time.

While we’ll be accepting a limited number of stories for ARTEMIS RISING, all stories will also be considered for general submissions as well, in the event that we simply have too much awesome to contain in one month.

How to Submit

A special ARTEMIS RISING Submittable portal will open September 1. Submissions will be open for the month of September 2018. Stories will air in March 2019.

Thanks, and we look forward to reading your stories!