HFY Podcast

So, I wanted to start podcasting again.

But my encounters with bedbugs completely stopped the group from meeting, which stopped the recordings from happening, which obviously stops a podcast.

I was also, obviously, dealing with bedbugs at the time, which cuts into your time pretty severely. As in – totally. There are a few sessions that I still haven’t edited, and at this point I don’t really intend to.

So I wanted to start podcasting and I didn’t have any material to do it with. Then I came across a small community that I knew about before, but had not taken very seriously.

Reddit.com/r/HFY will now be my source.

If you are unfamiliar with reddit, you should know that it actually has an influence that is at least on par with, if not significantly greater than, other platforms – like facebook or twitter. Hell, it was (is?) one of the main targets of the russian troll-factories that are so infamous now for screwing with the 2016 (and following?) elections.

It is a link-aggregate site that has a huge number of sub-communities (called subreddits) that are largely independent, though posts on any given subreddit may get enough notoriety that people browsing r/all (the catch-all, everything has a rank here) or even r/popular (a curated list of the largest and ‘best’ subreddits) have a chance to see it (badly-acting subreddits might also get shut down by the site admins).

r/HFY is a very particular and niche subreddit. It allows no posting of outside links – text posts only. The letters “HFY” stand for “Humanity, FUCK YEAH!”, and this is a reference to the type of SF story that focuses the spotlight on humans and shows off the things that make us awesome. Sometimes it’s our humanity itself – things like mercy and love and honor. Sometimes it’s the simple attitude of “No, I will not give up this fight, even if it kills me.” Sometimes it’s just the fact that omnivorous persistence hunters are crazy scary.

So, not only does the subreddit specifically care about that type of story, it also encourages new stories. There is a huge list of authors that write short stories for the sub – and only for the sub. Enough authors that they could make a smaller, even more niche community out of only the authors.

And what I think is the greatest strength of this subreddit: Almost every single author is an amateur. There are a few accomplished authors there, but honestly – some of the most successful authors on the sub have some other day job. There’s like 3 guys that make their living by writing, and mostly it’s writing for the sub. One guy has an entire saga (The “J-verse”) that is rumored to be greater than 2 million words total. He has a patreon that supports him entirely. From what I understand, he started on r/HFY.

So yeah, as long as I keep getting permission from authors, I’m going to narrate as much of r/HFY as I can. For some less interesting details, keep reading.

I plan on including other narrators quite early. After all, I’m really more interested in the production of the podcast than I am the recording, the narrating, or the voice-acting. In fact, my plan is that episode 7 will be the first non-me narration, and it looks like I’ll have enough other people volunteering that I can share the load 50/50.

At first, I would like to do only one-shot stories – those stories that do not require other reading to understand and are not a prerequisite themselves. I would like to do the more popular (finished) series later, maybe starting around episode 15-20, but I still need to hammer out some of the details that are involved in that. Eventually, I also want to do a full cast story – but that is crazy difficult, and for now just a pipe dream.

I am going to include women, minorities, and non-americans as well. I’m a white dude from midwest USA. Compared to everyone else, I’ve got it made. I’m like, in the stronger 50% of the wealthiest 1% of the world. There’s no reason not to try to help develop the podcasting, voice-acting, and writing world in to something that isn’t nearly so “me-centric.” I’d like it to be generally non-centric.

If you want to be included in this podcast – as a voice-actor, as a narrator, as an author, or some other way, then please email me: seth.kleinpaste@gmail.com. Put “HFY” somewhere in the subject line.



I mentioned on reddit that I have a personal website and I love it because it feels a little like “the old internet” (link to my comment here) and everybody started asking me for it.

I’m writing this post in anticipation of people actually coming here. Thanks for the interest.

Click around. I’ve got a weird gallery. I’ve got some episodes from a podcast that I decided to do based on r/HFY. (now defunct. I got 6 episodes in and realized I needed to stop.) I’ve got a bunch of weird shit here.

If you want to comment, please do! But please also be patient, I have it set to where I have to approve each person before they can post.

I also have a cool post upcoming about a D&D situation described by another redditor’s 5-year old. I’m pretty proud of it so far and it should be up by Monday.

Let Me Tell You A Story – HFY Episode 5 The Unthinkable

This time the story is in three parts!

Written by u/necrontyr525, The Unthinkable is about a war journalist coming to grips with one of humanity’s greatest evils – unleashing nuclear weapons upon each other.

Just a quick warning – there is a part in the second section that doesn’t translate well to audio. I should have caught it earlier and asked for license to make a paragraph that explains why there is a ‘jump’ in the narrative. It’s when the son is explaining what happened on Mars (twice). In the text there is an ellipsis to indicate that he continues on with the story, just that the reader doesn’t get to hear it. It makes the audio pretty rough, but it’s not too bad if you’re ready for it.

Here is a link to part one of the story.

Here is a link to the direct download from libsyn.

Here is a link to the author page.

Thank you to everyone for all of your support. Thanks for putting up with me, thanks for giving me feedback, and most of all, thanks for listening.

If you have suggestions about the format, authors I should be begging for permission, or just that you generally hate me and what I’m doing, feel free to say so in the comments on the reddit post. Seriously, I appreciate feedback and I want to change this podcast to fit what you would listen to.


Let Me Tell You A Story – HFY Episode 4 Last Minutes Of Station 41267

Life is still going crazy, but HEY – I still made me release schedule!

Written by u/JackFragg, Last Minutes of Station 41267 is about how we humans can find something to celebrate no matter where we go – even simply having someone to enjoy a fiery end with.

Here is a Link to the original text of the story.

Here is a link to direct download from libsyn

Here is The Patreon for u/JackFragg

And here is the author page

Thank you to everyone for all of your support. Thanks for putting up with me, thanks for giving me feedback, and most of all, thanks for listening.

If you have suggestions about the format, authors I should be begging for permission, or just that you generally hate me and what I’m doing, feel free to say so in the comments on the reddit post. Seriously, I appreciate feedback and I want to change this podcast to fit what you would listen to.


Let Me Tell You A Story. HFY Episode 3 The Hollow One

Written by u/regallegaleagle , an author of many stories at r/HFY, The Hollow One is a story that captures the spirit of humanity with inspiration coming from a human spirit speaking to a downtrodden alien prisoner-of-war.

Here is a Link to the original text of the story.

Here is a link to direct download from libsyn

Here is The Patreon for u/RegalLegaleagle is here

And here is the author page

Thank you to everyone for all of your support, even though there were huge flaws with how it came out (that have been corrected). Thanks for putting up with me, thanks for giving me feedback, and most of all, thanks for listening.

If you have suggestions about the format, authors I should be begging for permission, or just that you generally hate me and what I’m doing, feel free to say so in the comments on the reddit post. Seriously, I appreciate feedback and I want to change this podcast to fit what you would listen to.


Let Me Tell You A Story. HFY Episode 2 Stolen By the Stars


EDIT: CORRECTED. I accidentally muted the introduction track when I was exporting this as an Mp3. It now contains the correct file. Also I’ve updated this post to include the original text of the relevant story.

So…Just today was the first time I looked at the previous post from a “not signed in” perspective, and apparently I have a broken widget, causing some raw HTML to exist on the same line as the first line of the post. I’ve added a period and an empty line here in this one so that, if it happens again, it will be a little more readable. I’ll fix it later this week.

The reason that this episode is a little late (and I’m not fixing the posts now) is that I have a hugely important test that has been occupying as much of my brain as possible. This test, if I fail it, will get me fired. Not immediately – I have one more chance. But if I fail it twice, I won’t have a job. So I’m especially glad that I’ve taken the time to record everything beforehand, because I definitely would have just abandoned this wholesale if I needed to record and edit these last few weeks. And honestly, I like my new job. I want to keep it. I would be very sad and very stressed if I lost it.

Here is the text: Stolen By The Stars, by SquiggleStoryStudios A.K.A. Michelle K. Hodgson

So I’m throwing this up here real quick and I’m promising another post about other things either tomorrow after I pass the test or this weekend after I pass the test.

Let Me Tell You A Story. HFY Episode 1: The Longest Game

This might be better done as two posts, but FUCK IT, my furnace just crapped out today and I am (once again) on a laptop in my in-laws dining room, under a blanket staying up and writing until well past when I should go to sleep.

First off, about this audio that you see up there:

That is episode 1 of my new podcast (I talk about the podcast more in-depth in the second section) that is all about the awesome Sci-Fi from the subreddit that calls itself “Humanity, FUCK YEAH!” (or HFY! for short).

This first episode is the story The Longest Game, written by reddit user Dachande663, also known in the ‘real’ world as Luke Lanchester. I wanted to use this particular story as an introduction for a few reasons: it is the right length – which means that it’s a really good one to set expectations with. It tells a story with all the trimmings of good Sci-Fi in the past-tense – which allow the story to take it’s time, from a storytelling perspective. It also addresses some of the hardest struggles that we deal with as a society today – getting over old bitterness in ways that are imperfect, bumpy, and frightening. One thing that I think is very important – the author isn’t a gigantic celebrity, even on the subreddit: he’s just an average joe with a techie background and a penchant for writing some stuff.

If you can’t tell, I recorded this when I was in the depths of a nasty cold. I can tell, *every single time I hear it*. But for the majority of people coming from the subreddit – it’s just a stranger’s voice that will change a little as more episodes come out.

I am just going to say: please listen to the episode, and thanks for visiting my site. Here are the links if you want to follow along or find some other writing or further information on the author, the subreddit, the genre, or the podcast. There should be another episode in 2 weeks.

reddit.com/r/HFY for more stories without audio.

Lukelanchester.com for more about the author.

You’re already on my website, or I would be linking you there, as well.


Here comes the second section…

And Here’s the second section, in defense of running a podcast full of amateur authors and sometimes-hokey Sci-Fi.

So, a little while back I had to dismantle my Nerd Fort, because bedbugs had chased me out of my home (see previous posts, starting around November 2016) . I no longer had a primary source of audio for my D&D actual-play podcast. That sucked.

I still didn’t (and still don’t) have time to maintain a consistent D&D group, but I still did (and still do) have a desire to maintain a tangible link to the nerd world and I absolutely love the podcast format.

I also maintain that storytelling is one of the oldest and most important technologies that humans have ever come up with – even rivaling fire for it’s early date of adoption, its usefulness, and its ability to warm people’s hearts. I want to learn it, I want to foster it in others, and I want it to be something that people value tremendously.

Put these things together – 1) the value of storytelling, 2) the desire to keep up a nerdy podcast, and 3) just enough time on my hands to run a podcast, and add one final element – I came across a community of people called Humanity, FUCK YEAH!

The idea is that there are many stories (especially within the sci-fi genre) that emphasize humans as being an immense thing as they start exploring the universe – at times an insatiable predator, a diamond-hard freedom fighter, or even just a species capable of compassion towards those we could easily kill in a short fight. In these stories, humans buck the trend that already exists among the interesting alien species. Humans show amazing levels of courage and compassion, frightening fury, or just simply an ability to shrug off wounds that mwouldight fell a great beast on our own planet – and we just keep walking around later missing an arm or a leg (that’s pretty fucking metal).

These stories showcase the amazing things that humanity is capable of (We have put humans in to space at all, for god’s sake! We have sent our machines to the void beyond our own solar system! Talk about accomplishments!), and sometimes they showcase the awful horrors that we try to rise above.

One of my favorite early examples of this kind of story is in Star Trek: The Next Generation, when Captain Jean-Luc Picard is encountering and dueling wits with the apparently-omnipotent being known as “Q”. Picard is for some reason chosen by Q to answer for the awful things that humanity has inflicted upon one another (and we all have to admit – we have done some really messed up stuff). Picard, when confronted with some of the horrors of the Star Trek past and told to explain himself, says: the fact that they still exist at all after such abominable actions against each other shows that, while we may have some deeply-wrought wrong capable of bubbling up within our hearts, we are also constantly aware that this dark streak lives within our being, seeking an escape. In the Star Trek universe Picard asserts that we have learned as a species how to curtail those things within us – to rise above them, and fight them, and beat them back time and time again. In addition, we keep finding the motivation to do fight it, time and time again – even in those awful times that we don’t have the strength to see our will through to the end.

Star Trek was written by Gene Roddenberry as a love letter to humanity. Praising all of it’s strengths and forgiving weaknesses of his love while we figured things out. Star Trek was Gene Roddenberry saying to 20th century humanity, “Goddamit, you have GREATNESS in you, if you would just let it out!”

I believe that the Humanity, FUCK YEAH! sub-sub-genre is a wonderful celebration of these things that people like Roddenberry saw in us.

Currently, HFY has a home on reddit – at reddit.com/r/HFY. This subreddit asks authors to post stories there that match the HFY genre, and quite importantly, this subreddit praises honest attempt as much as it praises technical writing skills. The subreddit is filled to the brim with amateur writers. Several stories are posted every day from people saying “please be gentle with your critique, this is the first time I’ve published anything.” And I think that is amazing, especially since people in the sub find things to praise in those works right alongside the authors that have made a vocation doing fiction writing – some even having gotten a start on the sub!

So, I am now running a podcast that specializes in this sort of story, and mostly sourced directly from the subreddit. This means that there is going to be bad writing, cheesy transitions, and all the things that make amateur writing a wonderful mess. It also includes well-polished stories that honestly belong in bigger venues and deserve to be paid. Some have a larger word count than many full-length novels, some are written by someone that writes professionally, as their full time job! It includes some stories that are no longer than a few paragraphs. It includes a few series that would be an entire serial podcast start to finish. There is a huge wealth of styles, lengths, and viewpoints, and I think that everyone would be better for spending some time there.

To that end, I’m running a podcast that is going to have severely amateur-level writing, and I’m going to have extremely well-crafted stories. I am going to have stories that take less than 10 minutes to tell, and I’m going to have stories that will take several episodes, 30 minutes a piece. I’m going to have stories that are all about how awesome humans are, and I’m gong to have stories about humans making up for their specie’s sins for the rest of eternity.

I hope you enjoy it.