This is a bit different from my normal reading recommendations as it actually isn’t about anything to read, instead it’s about something you should listen to. “Welcome to Night Vale” is a free podcast written by Joseph Fink and Jeffrey Cranor and distributed by Commonplace Books and it’s been dominating the iTunes download charts.
It’s fantastic. Narrated by Cecil Baldwin public-radio style “Welcome to Night Vale” centers around the local events happening in the fictional desert town of Night Vale. At first it seems like innocent enough news stories: PTA meetings, the library groundbreaking, weather, news about the local dog park, but it quickly becomes clear that things in this town aren’t what they seem. Everything in Night Vale is twisted and slightly off kilter—it’s weird—and everyone in the town is strangely okay with it. You know what…it works, “Welcome to Night Vale” does what a lot of fiction can only dream of: it become alive.
A lot of people have had a tough time describing the podcast but my favorite description comes from the Wikipedia page, it describes “Welcome to Night Vale” as:
The news from Lake Wobegon as seen through the eyes of Stephen King.
It’s the perfect description, Fink and Cranor create an engaging place full of mystery and laughs channeling the best from Lovecraft and Orson Welles and it’s worth any weird fiction fan’s time. I’d also recommend the interview Fink and Carnor had with NPR’s Jacki Lyden on Weekend, they go into some interesting details about their process.
Join me and give “Welcome to Night Vale” a listen. Turn on your radio and hide.
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