an interesting podcast from your old pal, Wil wheaton

Radio Free Burrito Presents: Tony and the Beetles by Philip K. Dick.

wil, · Categories: Books, Current Affairs

The great Philip K. Dick wrote about the human condition as well as any speculative fiction writer of the 20th century, and I am incredibly lucky that this story of his is out of copyright.

This was originally published in 1953. It’s about racism and colonialism, about how the participants in a war see themselves and each other.

In a lot of ways, it’s about the original sin of America, a sin we have not yet reckoned with, to our great shame, with disastrous results for people of color and Native Americans.

But it’s also a fun science fiction story about a kid who just wants to play with his friends, and what happens instead.

I talk a LOT before this one. I have a lot of thoughts in my head and I’m feeling a lot of feelings, so it may not be my best work. But it’s honest, and we could use that right now, I think.

Radio Free Burrito Presents: Alibi Girl by Jack Nielsen

wil, · Categories: Books

From the September, 1947 issue of Master Detective Magazine, comes “Alibi Girl”, a pulp narrative of two police detectives, solving a murder case where their prime suspect confesses, but also has an air-tight alibi.

This one was a lot of fun to read. I’ve been wanting to do a mid-century detective story since this started.

Radio Free Burrito Presents: Mr. ‘Possum by Abbie Phillips Walker

wil, · Categories: Books

This is a children’s bedtime story that I recorded specifically for my nephew to hear.

If you have children, or you’re a child at heart, I hope you’ll give it a listen. I think it’s a sweet story.

Radio Free Burrito Presents: Dagon by HP Lovecraft

wil, · Categories: Books

Since I started Radio Free Burrito Presents several weeks ago, lots of you have asked me if I would narrate something by HP Lovecraft.

I love the Cthulhu mythos, but I’m not crazy about Lovecraft’s storytelling. I feel like he spends a lot of time in the high concept and the world building, without ever really going more than skin deep on his protagonists and narrative characters. NB: I haven’t read a ton of Lovecraft, probably six or so short stories, so maybe he has a novel or novella with rich characters and narratives, but I haven’t found it.

None of this is to suggest that he wasn’t brilliantly creative and imaginative, just that his stories aren’t the most satisfying use of my time.

However, hundreds of you have reached out in comments and emails, asking me to narrate something from the Cthulhu Mythos, so today’s RFB Presents is a short, weird, lurid story called Dagon.

If I’ve done this correctly (I’ve been having some server issues), you should be able to download or stream using links below.

Radio Free Burrito Presents: The Coffin Maker of Carbunari by Robert Tralins

wil, · Categories: Books

I did a SUPER short little audiobook thingy for y’all today. The whole thing is only about 11 minutes long, perfect for a quick walk around the block.

Published in 1970, today’s short story comes from a battered old paperback I own called SUPERNATURAL STRANGERS, by Robert Tralins. Because it’s Earth Day, I recorded in my back yard. I hope you can hear some of the birds, and sounds of beautiful Spring life, behind the spooky tale.

I hope you enjoy it. It was fun to do this.

Radio Free Burrito Presents: Return to Pleasure Island by Cory Doctorow

wil, · Categories: Books

Today’s RFB Presents comes from my friend, Cory Doctorow.

Cory says, “This is the story of the ogres who run the concession stands on Pleasure Island, where Pinnocchio’s friend Lampwick turned into a donkey. Like much of my stuff, this has a tie-in with Walt Disney World; the idea came to me on the Pinnocchio ride in the Magic Kingdom, in 1993.”

Radio Free Burrito Presents: The Middle Toe of the Right Foot by Ambrose Bierce

wil, · Categories: Books

A wickedly funny, beautifully written, tale from one of the great American authors.

More info for my fellow nerds who like to know this sort of stuff:…f_the_Right_Foot…143-h.htm#Middle…_Such_Things_Be_

Radio Free Burrito Presents: Thoughts on the Worldstate, by Henry Kuttner

wil, · Categories: Books

From the Spring, 1940 issue of Fantasia Something, edited by Ray Bradbury, today’s short story is a goddamn delight.…N_THE_WORLDSTATE

Radio Free Burrito Presents: The Water Ghost of Harrowby Hall by John Kendrick Bangs

wil, · Categories: Books

Today’s reading is a satirical Victorian ghost story from the 1890s.

Found at Project Gutenberg:…8377-images.html

Radio Free Burrito Presents: The Sun Goddess by Frank Rinder

wil, · Categories: Books

While we are Social Distancing, and Staying Home to Stay Safe (how about those capital letters?!), I’m recording and releasing free audiobooks a couple times a week.

I’ve been putting them at SoundCloud, but I’m going to start putting them here, too, because I am proud of these little things, and I want them to have as large an audience as possible.

Here’s the second short I read, The Sun Goddess, by Frank Rinder.