88 Names podcast bonus interview: Keram Malicki-Sanchez

photo by Tim Leyes

Today on the 88 Names podcast site, we have a written interview with actor, filmmaker, composer, and “VR evangelist” Keram Malicki-Sanchez. As the founder of the VRTO Virtual & Augmented Reality World Conference and the founder and executive producer of FIVARS, the Festival of International Virtual & Augmented Reality Stories, Keram knows a lot about recent and forthcoming developments in VR technology, and his answers to our questions cover a wide range of topics. You can check out the interview here.

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88 Names season 2, episode 5: Drew Stone

On this week’s episode of the 88 Names podcast, we talk with Drew Stone, the founder of Locusium, a company that helps organize and facilitate events in virtual reality. Drew is also an old friend of the pod — last year, he helped set up my author appearance on AltspaceVR.

This will be our last regular podcast episode. Next week, I’ll be returning to AltspaceVR for another live reading and Q&A (details here). And the week after that, Blake Collier and I will be doing a special wrap-up episode where we talk about this very strange year we’ve just lived through.

We also have a couple of bonus written interviews that will be posting soon. Stay tuned!

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Live reading and Q&A in AltspaceVR next Tuesday (4/13) at 5 PM Pacific

Next week, to celebrate the publication of the 88 Names trade paperback edition, I’ll be returning to AltspaceVR for a live reading and audience Q&A. The event is free and open to anyone with internet access.

To attend, you’ll need to download the appropriate AltspaceVR client software. Download links are on the AltspaceVR homepage (if you don’t have a VR headset, choose “2D mode”). Once the client is installed, you’ll need to create an account and spend a few minutes creating your avatar. The final step is to RSVP for the event, which you can do here.

I hope to see you there!

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Changed my Mind

This week I was a guest on the Changed my Mind podcast, hosted by Luke T. Harrington, the award-winning author of Ophelia, Alive: A Ghost Story and Murder Bears, Moonshine, and Mayhem.

As you might guess from the name, the podcast is devoted to interviews with people who’ve changed their minds about something important. In this episode, Luke and I talk about why I left the Lutheran church. I’ve discussed this publicly a few times before, most notably in a speech I gave at the 2010 Calvin College Festival of Faith & Writing, but for a lot of fans I suspect this will be new, and may give some additional insight into why and how I write the kinds of novels that I do.

If you enjoy my conversation with Luke, I’d highly recommend you check out his other podcast episodes. The “loss of faith” interviews — such as the ones with Ryssa Marshall, Yons, and Calvin Moore — tend to be particularly interesting. I also really enjoyed the Halloween episode with Christian Tiews, a Lutheran exorcist, which I did not know was a thing (though having discovered that it is, I am unsurprised to learn that Lutheran exorcists think their version of the rite is superior to the Roman Catholic version).

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88 Names season 2, episode 4: Dr. Todd P. Chang

On this week’s episode of the 88 Names podcast, Blake and I talk with Dr. Todd P. Chang, a pediatric emergency medicine physician at the Children’s Hospital in Los Angeles. Dr. Chang has done extensive research into the use of VR and other immersive technologies in medical training, particularly as it relates to his specialty. This was a great discussion, and as I mention at one point, prepping for the interview led me down some fascinating internet rabbit holes.

On our next episode, we’ll be talking to Locusium founder Drew Stone.

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Part 2 of my adventures in the Dungeons of Drakkenheim tomorrow, 3/30, at 3 PM Pacific

Tomorrow at 3 PM Pacific I’ll be rejoining Montgomery Martin and Kelly McLaughlin, aka the Dungeon Dudes, on their Twitch livestream for part 2 of my epic adventure as Mr. Big in the Untold Tales of Drakkenheim. You can watch part 1 right now on the Dungeon Dudes’ YouTube channel, here. And if you haven’t done so already, I’d also recommend listening to last week’s 88 Names podcast interview with Monty and Kelly.

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88 Names podcast season 2, episode 3: the Dungeon Dudes


On the latest episode of the 88 Names podcast, we speak to Kelly McLaughlin and Montgomery Martin, aka the Dungeon Dudes, whose YouTube channel offers advice and role-playing tips for 5th edition Dungeons & Dragons. They also have a weekly Twitch stream on which they broadcast live sessions from their Dungeons of Drakkenheim campaign. (I was their guest on this week’s stream, and had an amazing time — you can check out the video replay here.) If you like their work and want to support them, you can do so through their Patreon, or through their forthcoming Dungeons of Drakkenheim Kickstarter.

On our next episode, we talk to pediatric emergency physician Dr. Todd Chang about his research into the use of VR in medical training.

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Join me in the Dungeons of Drakkenheim tomorrow, 3/23, at 3 PM Pacific

Tomorrow at 3 PM Pacific / 6 PM Eastern I will be joining Kelly McLaughlin and Montgomery Martin, aka the Dungeon Dudes, in their livestreamed D&D campaign, the Untold Tales of Drakkenheim. I’ll be playing the character Alvin Peaseblossom, aka “Mr. Big,” a 4th-level gnome rogue with a giant brain. This is my first D&D session since college, thirty-five years ago, so it promises to be extra chaotic, and a lot of fun.

You can watch us live on Twitch, here, or catch the video replay afterwards on either Twitch or the Dungeon Dudes’ YouTube channel. You’ll also want to check out this week’s 88 Names podcast, where Kelly and Monty will be our special guests.

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88 Names: the Big Idea

This morning I have an essay up on John Scalzi’s Whatever blog, talking about the Big Idea behind 88 Names. You can read it here. (While you’re visiting Whatever, you can also check out my two previous Big Idea essays, about Lovecraft Country and The Mirage.)

And speaking of big things (he segued flawlessly), next Tuesday I’ll be playing the character of Mr. Big, aka Alvin Peaseblossom, a 4th level gnome rogue adventuring in the cursed city of Drakkenheim on the Dungeon Dudes’ Twitch stream. The fun starts at 3 PM Pacific / 6 PM Eastern.

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88 Names podcast season 2, episode 2: Sasha Samochina


On this week’s episode of the 88 Names podcast, we talk to Sasha Samochina, an award-winning technologist at NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory.

You can learn more about Sasha’s work at her website. This YouTube playlist contains 360 and VR videos that Sasha has produced for NASA JPL. This video gives a brief overview of the OnSight mixed-reality software, developed by JPL, that lets scientists take virtual walks on Mars. And the Access Mars WebVR experience lets you use your browser to make your own virtual visit to Mars.

On our next episode, we talk to the Dungeon Dudes, Montgomery Martin and Kelly McLaughlin.

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