Our fifth podcast for May is “Cold Comfort” written by Pat Murphy and Paul Doherty and read by Kate Baker.
Originally published in Bridging Infinity, edited by Jonathan Strahan.
Pat Murphy writes fiction that inhabits the borderland between genres, where life is interesting and the rules are slippery. She is very grateful that science fiction exists, since it has provided a happy home for seven of her eight novels and many of her short stories. Her work has won numerous awards, including two Nebula Awards, the Philip K. Dick Award, the World Fantasy Award, the Seiun Award, and the Theodore Sturgeon Memorial Award. Her novels include The Falling Woman, The City Not Long After, Nadya: The Wolf Chronicles, Wild Angel, and Adventures in Time and Space with Max Merriwell. Her short stories are collected in Points of Departure and Women Up To No Good. With Karen Joy Fowler, she co-founded the James Tiptree, Jr. Award, an annual literary prize for science fiction or fantasy that expands or explores our understanding of gender roles. In her day job, she is the resident Evil Genius at MysteryScience.com, where she creates science activities to inspire and amaze elementary school students.
The late Paul Doherty was a physicist, author, teacher, and mountaineer. As part of his job as a senior scientist at the Exploratorium, he worked as a scientist/writer at McMurdo station Antarctica. There he joined a group of scientists doing research on the rim of Mt. Erebus, an active volcano, and learned firsthand about surviving in the extreme cold. In collaboration with Pat Murphy, Paul wrote a science column for The Magazine of Fantasy and Science Fiction. He wrote many nonfiction science books, including the Explorabook, which came with the tools for doing the experiments it described. He is the winner of the Faraday Award for Excellence in Science Teaching from the National Science Teachers Association. A long-time science fiction reader, Paul worked out the equations for the navigation of a relativistic spacecraft back in 1979, which landed him a mention in Fredrick Pohl's novel Starburst.