Spotlight – Tom Goodwin

Author Tom GoodwinDespite being an incredibly respected science fiction writer, not much is known about the life of Tom Godwin. The author of three novels and around thirty short stories. He was forced to drop out of school in the third grade, yet he managed to write one of the most famous and controversial short stories in the science fiction genre. “The Cold Equations” was originally published in Astounding Magazine in 1954 and was Godwin’s fourth published story.

The Cold Equations,” tells the story of Marilyn whose only fault is that she has been raised in a world that has sheltered her to the point of ignorance. She does not realize the perils of space and she pays for it. She does not die because of aliens, blasters or even an explosion in space. She dies because she is uninformed, and idealizes the hazards of space. She failed to understand the basic premise that weight equals fuel usage. Too much weight equals a shorter flight time.

This story made many critics realize that science fiction was not all warp-speed and flashing lights. Godwin proved that the genre could be deep, dark, and scary. Did Marilyn have to die? Fuel in a space is a tricky thing. Take a look at our own history in space and you will see the point. Despite solutions drawn up by other writers (as well as by Godwin himself), the answer is yes. Not because she deserved it, but because life is, sometimes, more often than not, unfair. Though the story was written and published in the ’50s, the concept grips us still.

On the podcast this week we will feature another of Goodwin’s tales, with the same sort of impact. It is called, “The Nothing Equation,” and is a science fiction short story that explores the loneliness of space.

This Week’s Podcast:

Also on this podcast, we will have another edition of, Johnny Is It True, and more of your stories and submissions. You can listen to this podcast on Thursday at Ron’s Amazing Stories, download it from iTunes, stream it on Stitcher Radio or on the mobile version of Spotify. Do you prefer the radio? We are heard every Sunday Night at 8:00 PM (PST) on AMFM247.COM. Check your local listing or find the station closest to you at this link.

The Calendar:

April 26 – Throwback Thursday – RAS #325
May 03 – These Are Your Stories – RAS #326
May 10 – After The Movies – RAS #327
May 17 – The Answer – RAS #328
May 24 – The Nothing Equation – RAS #329
May 31 – Memorial Day Replay – RAS #330

RAS #328 – The Answer

On Ron’s Amazing Stories we track a missile heading to Auburn, but was it launched by humans or aliens? Tune in and find out. Also, We have three of your stories which include two museum ghosts and one angel visitation. Add to that a Five Minute Mystery with a killer snake!

Our Marquee Story – The Answer

Our main tale is a science fiction short story called, The Answer. It was written by H. Beam Piper and made its first appearance in Fantastic Universe. When you listen to this story you might think it is a modern tale surely written in our time.  However, it takes place in 1984 and was written in 1959. It tells the story of a post-nuclear war and the efforts to find out who started it.

Ron’s Amazing Stories is produced and hosted by Ronald Hood
Email: ronsamazingstories@gmail.com
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/ronsamazingstories/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/RASpodcast

Email Of The Week – What’s Your Story

I have received many emails asking basically the same question so, I decided to pick the best one and answer it.

Marilyn from Spring Falls, Virginia sent in this email:  Hello Ron, I love the podcast and want to share my story. Most of your stories are so exciting and I am afraid that mine is rather boring. What types of stories do you want for the show? Do they have to be supernatural?  – Marilyn

What's Your Story?Marilyn,

I have to say that I am looking for any story and all stories. Nothing is too boring, too scary or too funny. On the show, we have had everything from ghosts to wolf encounters. We have had lost time tales to a funny rowboat story. The question I have is this: What’s your story?

Anything counts! All that I ask is that it be yours and the subject matter has to be family friendly. In fact, the only stories I have ever rejected have been borderline indecent.  

I recently upgraded the story submission process at Ron’s Amazing Stories to make getting your tales to me, a simple process. Just head to the main site and click on the story submission banner.

Thank you for the question,

-Ron

This Week’s Podcast:

Our main story tracks a missile heading to Auburn, but was it launched by humans or aliens? Tune in and find out. Also, We have your stories which include two museum ghosts and one angel visitation. You can listen to this podcast on Thursday at Ron’s Amazing Stories, download it from iTunes, stream it on Stitcher Radio or on the mobile version of Spotify. Do you prefer the radio? We are heard every Sunday Night at 8:00 PM (PST) on AMFM247.COM. Check your local listing or find the station closest to you at this link.

The Calendar:

April 26 – Throwback Thursday – RAS #325
May 03 – These Are Your Stories – RAS #326
May 10 – At The Movies – RAS #327
May 17 – The Answer – RAS #328
May 24 – Mystery Week – RAS #329
May 31 – RAS #330 or HE #21

RAS #327 – After The Movies

On Ron’s Amazing Stories #327 we feature Ray Milland in an excellent Suspense story called, After The Movies. We also have two new stories from you guys. Jim sent one in called Twelve Miles North of Alamosa, and Melissa has a ghost story from Cal Poly. A Moment In Time returns with a trip to May 7th, 1949.  

Our OTR Story – After The Movies

As promised we have an OTR gem this week from the classic radio series Suspense. It stars international icon, Ray Milland. Milland plays a juror on a murder trial who finds an envelope containing a $10,000 bribe on the floor of a drugstore. Our story is called, After The Movies, and first aired on December 7, 1950.

Ron’s Amazing Stories is produced and hosted by Ronald Hood
Email: ronsamazingstories@gmail.com
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/ronsamazingstories/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/RASpodcast

True or False with Ray Milland

On this edition of Ron’s Amazing Blog, we will explore the American icon, Ray Milland. We will do this with a good old-fashioned game of True or False. Can you guess the answer before you read it?

Ray Milland - Actor - 1905-1986Ray Milland was born on January 3rd somewhere between 1905 through 1910 in Neath, Wales. He migrated to the United States in 1930 to find work as an actor. He worked in movies as both director and actor until 1985. He won several awards for his craft including an Emmy and Oscar.

Q1:  Ray Milland’s real name was Alfred Reginald Jones?

True: Of all the name changes I have seen in a movie career this has to be most different from the original. Another source has his real name listed as Reginald Truscott-Jones. Also, no one can seem to agree on his birth year. So it is listed as 1905-1910. I guess records were not a big deal in early 20th century Wales.

Q2: Ray’s military career was as a Cavalryman?

True: Milland served in the Household Cavalry of the British Army, becoming a marksman, horseman, and airplane pilot. As an expert shot, he became a member of his company’s rifle team, winning many prestigious competitions, including the Bisley Match in England. While stationed in London, Milland met dancer Margot St. Leger, and through her was introduced to actress Estelle Brody. Brody queried Milland’s commitment to an army career, which led to Milland buying himself out of the forces in 1928 in the hope of becoming an actor. His first major role was in The Flying Scotsman (1929).

Q3: Milland worked as an assistant manager for a Shell Oil Gas Station?

True: Milland found life in Britain difficult with little regular work. Having no options left he moved to California and found a small flat on Sunset Boulevard. With little prospect of finding acting work, Milland took on several odd jobs that included working for a bookie. He decided to find regular employment and became the assistant manager of a Shell gas station on Sunset and Clark.

Q4: Ray Milland won his only Oscar for the classic movie Rich Man, Poor man (1976)

False: While he did win an Emmy for his work in Rich Man, Poor man his Oscar came for his portrayal of Don Birnam in The Lost Weekend (1945). This was considered to be the pinnacle of Milland’s career. Milland’s first concern with taking on the role was that he might overact and look amateurish. Milland quickly realized that he needed to understand alcoholism. Milland was allowed to spend a night in a psychiatric ward of Bellevue Hospital, where the patients were suffering from alcoholism and delirium tremens. He found the experience extremely disturbing and left at three in the morning. Milland spoke with the book’s author Charles R. Jackson to gain insight into the illness. His performance was so convincing, Milland was beleaguered for years by rumors that he actually was an alcoholic. The actor claimed he was not.

Q5: Ray Milland was considered quite the playboy in Hollywood with ties to even Grace Kelly.

False: While he did date Grace Kelly, Milland was married to Muriel Frances Weber from 1932 until his death in 1986. They had a son, Daniel and adopted a daughter. Milland became a naturalized American citizen in the 1940 and supported the Republican Party.

Q6: After his death, he instructed that his body be cremated and his ashes spread in Wales?

False: Almost true. He died at the age of 79 of lung cancer at the Torrance Memorial Medical Center in Torrance, California, on 10 March 1986. In-line with his instructions, no funeral was held. His body was cremated, and its ashes were scattered into the Pacific Ocean at Redondo Beach, California.

This Week’s Podcast:

On the podcast this week we will feature Ray Milland in an excellent Suspense story called, After The Movies. We also have two new listener stories from Jim and Melissa. You can listen to this podcast on Thursday at Ron’s Amazing Stories, download it from iTunes, stream it on Stitcher Radio or on the mobile version of Spotify. Do you prefer the radio? We are heard every Sunday Night at 8:00 PM (PST) on AMFM247.COM. Check your local listing or find the station closest to you at this link.

The Calendar:

April 26 – Throwback Thursday – RAS #325
May 03 – These Are Your Stories – RAS #326
May 10 – At The Movies – RAS #327
May 17 – Sci-Fi Week – RAS #328
May 24 – Mystery Week – RAS #329
May 31 – RAS #330 or HE #21