Tales from the Trunk


Episode 17: ”When Dreams Like Fire Spread” - Merc Fenn Wolfmoor

We're joined on this episode by author and Nebula Award finalist, Merc Fenn Wolfmoor (@Merc_Wolfmoor). Merc reads their short horror story, "When Dreams Like Fire Spread," and we talk about horror, portal fantasies, queer representation, and fanfiction. Merc's newest story, "Bring the Bones That Sing," is now up on Diabolical Plots!


A transcript of the episode, provided by D. H. Dunn, is available here.


Things we mention on this episode:

She-Ra and the Princesses of Power 

Robot Dinosaur Fiction 

AJ Hackwith's appearance on Tales from the Trunk


The Magnus Archives 

Writing Excuses 

Welcome to Night Vale 

X Minus One 

"This is Not a Wardrobe Door," by Merc Fenn Wolfmoor

In Other Lands, by Sarah Rees Brennan

Fireside Quarterly 

Pokémon Go 

Dawn of the Dead 


The Ring 

They Live (alluded to)


The Destroy anthology series

Disabled People Destroy Science Fiction! 

John Wiswell 

Elsa Sjunneson 

Nightmare Magazine being edited by Wendy Wagner beginning in 2021

Be the Serpent 

Archive Of Our Own 

My Battery Is Low and It Is Getting Dark 

The Dystopia Triptych 

Silk & Steel 

Sword and Sonnet 

No Shit, There I Was 

Avatars Inc 

Architects of Memory, by Karen Osborne


Join us again on August  7th for whatever our next Shelter in Place special, and August 21st, when our guest will be Karen Osborne


Shelter in Place 4: ”The Doorway”

Friends, somehow it is July of twenty twenty. We’re still sheltering in place, here in Beautiful Oakland, California, and that doesn’t look like it’s going to change anytime soon. I hope that wherever you are in the world, you and your friends and loved ones are safe and well.

For this month’s Shelter in Place episode, we’re diving back into my trunk, all the way back to the spring of 2010, a whole entire decade ago, to brush some of the dust off of another story that I wrote for an assignment. I don’t recall what, if anything, I was given as a prompt, but I turned it into another vaguely horror-y tunnel story, which should surprise approximately nobody.

Actually, this story predates “Green Line,” which I read on our April episode, by about a year.


Join us again on July 17th, when Merc Fenn Wolfmoor will be on the show!


Episode 16: Megan E. O’Keefe - Conduit of Stone

On this episode, we're joined by Megan E. O'Keefe, author of Velocity Weapon and its forthcoming sequel, Chaos Vector. Megan reads the first chapter of her trunked novel, Conduit of Stone, which leads us into a lively conversation about our influences and Megan's thoughts on the parallels between writing and video game development.

A transcript of the episode, provided by D. H. Dunn, is available here.

Please join us again for our next Shelter in Place episode on July 3rd, and on July 17th, when our regular guest will be Merc Fenn Wolfmoor!


Pride in Place: What Queer Fiction Means to Us

I thought for a long time about delaying this episode or simply not releasing it at all, but for all the darkness in the world, we still need art. We need voices of hope. It is Pride month, where we celebrate who we are and how far we’ve come, and where we honor and remember those who came before us.

Stonewall was a riot against police brutality, started by Marsha P. Johnson, a Black, trans woman. We would not have Pride without queer, Black activists.

This Pride in Place episode was inspired in part by the folx at Buddies in Bad Times Theater in Toronto, a space dedicated to the promotion of queer theatrical expression.


The contributors who wished to be named for this episode are:

K. B. Wagers, Twitter @kbwagers, Insta @midwaybrawler 

Jill Seidenstein, Slow Bloom 


You can find your local community bail funds at bit.ly/localbailfund 

Consider raising up Black spec-fic writers by subscribing to FIYAH Literary Magazine (@fiyahlitmag)


Join us again on June 19th, when our guest will be Megan E. O'Keefe


Episode 15: Annalee Flower Horne - ”Diamonds in the Sky”

For this month's episode, we're joined by Annalee Flower Horne (@LeeFlower). They read the first chapter of their trunked novel, Diamonds in the Sky, and we talk about Esperanto-speaking space-Quakers, source control management, representation, appropriation, mental health, and test-driven development.

A transcript of the episode, provided by D. H. Dunn, is available here.

Things we mention this episode:


"Seven Things Cadet Blanchard Learned from the Trade Summit Incident," by Annalee Flower Horne, The Magazine of Fantasy and Science Fiction, July/Aug 2014 issue

Mary Robinette Kowal 

Star Trek 



The Dazzle of Day, by Molly Goss

Quaker process 

Occupy Wall Street 

Mass Effect 2 

Civil Air Patrol 

Rejection Sensitive Dysphoria 

Carborundorum > /dev/null,” by Annalee Flower Horne, Fireside Quarterly, July 2018

Test-driven development 

"The Great Divide," Avatar: the Last Airbender season 1, episode 11

Nineteen Eighty-Four, by George Orwell

Mary Sue 

Star Wars 




The MICE Quotient 

"it me, ur smol," by Merc Fenn Wolfmoor

it me, ur smol (Twitter bot)

The Bias 


Join us again on Friday, June 5th, for our Pride in Place special!


Shelter in Place 2: ”New Horse Thing”

Joining me live in studio for this month's Shelter in Place special is my spouse, Elizabeth! We revisit the original concept for this show with some excerpts from her story "Horse Story," and talk race-consciousness, pin-gays, and representation.
Join us again on Friday, May 15th, Annalee Flower Horne will be on the show!

Episode 14: Hilary B. Bisenieks - ”Green Line”

For close to the start of our second season, I decided to turn the table on myself, and Sharon Hsu (@pensyf) was kind enough to agree to come back on the show to guest-host! I read my story, "Green Line," and we talk about Philadelphia, our evolution as writers, and why podcasting is great.
Things we mention in this episode:
365 Tomorrows (and my story, "Monday")
Codex writer's forum
Join us on May 1st for our next Shelter in Place episode, featuring my spouse, and on May 15th, when our guest will be Annalee Flower Horne.

Shelter in Place 1: ”Steel Yard”

Welcome to our first shelter in place special episode. On this episode, I'll be reading my 2009 story, "Steel Yard." Please note that things get a little spoopy, so if you need something lighter at the moment, I won't fault you for skipping this one.
Join us again in two weeks, on Friday, April 17th, when I'll be back with a regular episode featuring me and special guest host Sharon Hsu!

Episode 13: Jordan Kurella - “Awake, Arise, and Be Forever Fallen”

Season two starts off with guest Jordan Kurella (@jskurella) reading an excerpt of their very dark and murdery story, "Awake, Arise, and Be Forever Fallen." Following that is a great discussion of problematic storytelling, the pitfalls, and how we can write and act with empathy when representing marginalized groups in our stories. We also talk sensitivity reading and the fine art of apologizing online.
Things mentioned in this episode:
"The Air Gap," by Hilary B. Bisenieks, in LampLight Magazine
Mary Robinette Kowal's explanation of the MICE Quotient
"A Promise of Dying Embers," by Jordan Kurella, forthcoming at Diabolical Plots
Join us again on April 17th, when our guest will be me, Hilary B. Bisenieks, and Sharon Hsu will be joining us as guest host.

Episode 12: K. B. Wagers, ”Reluctant Heroes”

On this episode, K. B. Wagers (@kbwagers/@midwaybrawler) joins us to read an excerpt from their novel, Reluctant Heroes and talk competence porn, how Twilight-bashing is shitty and counterproductive, social media, and tattoos.
This episode marks the end of season 1 of Tales from the Trunk! Thank you all so much for joining us on this ride!
Things we mentioned on this episode:
SFWA Grand Master, Lois McMaster Bujold
Schlock Mercenary, by Howard Tayler
Twilight, by Stephenie Meyers
The Merlin Mystery, by Jonathan Gunson and Marten Coombe
Behind the Throne, by K. B. Wagers
Space Opera, by Catherynne M. Valente
Out Past the Stars, by K. B. Wagers
Nineteen Eighty-Four, by George Orwell
We, by Yevgeny Zamyatin
The Hunger Games, by Suzanne Collins
"The Hades Business," by Terry Pratchett (his first published story), which appears in A Blink of the Screen
A Pale Light in the Black, by K. B. Wagers
Join us again next month, on March 20th, when we'll kick off season 2 with guest Jordan Kurella!
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