Breaking the glass slipper

Women in Speculative Fiction

Women have been creating and starring in science fiction, fantasy, and horror since the genre began. We are here to celebrate the wonderful contribution of women to speculative fiction. We are an intersectional feminist podcast and embrace all voices.

Breaking the Glass Slipper won Best Audio in the 2019 British Fantasy Awards  and was nominated for a Hugo Award.


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About the podcast

Our episodes discuss trends and issues in speculative fiction across books, films, TV, and games, including interviews with industry experts.

Science fiction

Science and technology are the order of the day. Let’s explore the final frontier together.


The home of magic and dragons. The only limit is your imagination.


Be prepared for thrills and chills. This is no place for the faint hearted.

Epic episodes

Sometimes you will find us arguing amongst ourselves and for other episodes, we will bring on one or two special guests to throw the discussion open with diverse voices.

Who We are

The podcast was the brainchild of pop culture commentator Megan Leigh, who enlisted the help of fantasy author Lucy Hounsom and horror writer and romance editor Charlotte Bond to create the perfect podcasting dream team.

Charlotte Bond

Ghostwriter, author, commissioning editor and reviewer. In 2015, she became the commissioning editor for Gemstone Romance. She is also a reviewer on the Ginger Nuts of Horror website and a guest reviewer at Jane and Bex’s Book Blog. You can find her on her FaceBook page or follow her on Twitter @offred85.

Lucy Hounsom

Author of The Worldmaker Trilogy, the first book of which, Starborn, was shortlisted for the Gemmell Morningstar Award for best fantasy debut in 2016. She’s also a Waterstones bookseller and lives in Devon, UK with two cats and many dragons. You can follow her @silvanhistorian.

Megan Leigh

Writer of fiction and non-fiction. Her work has appeared on Pop Verse, SFWA, SFF World, Pornokitsch, and Writers’ Workshop. She reviews books for the British Fantasy Society. Follow her @m_leigh_g.

Latest Episodes

You can listen to Breaking the Glass Slipper on most platforms, for instance: Spotify, iTunesSoundcloudStitcherTuneIn, and via RSS Feed.

Women write YA?

Have you ever wandered into a bookstore and found yourself baffled by the shelving of some books? Have you ever read a review that labeled a book written for adults as YA only to bemoan the amount of adult content? What do most of these erroneously shelved books have...

Curses and consent – with Heather Walter

Fairy tales are both timeless and personal. We see their themes and motifs repeated in stories spanning centuries.But while the characters and scenarios might be familiar, the morals change over time. The story’s message may differ depending on who is telling that...

Rights, retellings and the Ramayana – with Vaishnavi Patel

When Madeline Miller published Circe, it heralded the start of a new wave of feminist retellings, in which writers revisited well-known classics in order to tell the stories of those excluded from the dominant narrative. Now the popularity of mythological retellings...

“Do not take me for granite” – with Amal El-Mohtar

Ursula K Le Guin is the very definition of a legend. So many of us found our way to speculative fiction through her works, while others only realised later that the tropes we so loved – considered cliched now – were fresh and new when Le Guin brought them to life....

Deconstructing Cinderella – with JJA Harwood

The tale of Cinderella - or the Cat Cinderella, or Aschenputtel - is a story that is found in many cultures throughout the world. The extraneous elements may change - sometimes there's a ball, sometimes not, there can be murder, a nut tree, a fairy godmother or the...

Unmapping fantasy with A. K. Larkwood

It's high fantasy. You know the drill: personalities are defined by race. Elves are pointy-eared snobs who are unbearably pretty, orcs are barely sentient lap dogs, dwarves love gold and mining... And this is how it's been, for the most part, since Middle Earth. ...

Slavic narratives with Gabriela Houston

If you have been listening to our podcast for some time now, you will be well aware of our fascination with fairytales and how they continue to shape modern speculative fiction. But when we talk about fairytales, we are often thinking of a very narrow subset – those...

Women, history & power – with Kate Heartfield

For our first episode of 2022, we are going back to the 18th century, to look at the women who wielded power and the means they used to gain it. What challenges did they face? Are they remembered more or less favourably than their male contemporaries? And if, say,...

Beyond the Mafia – with Fonda Lee

Fantasy – and indeed most fiction – often involves bitter rivalries. Fights over a kingdom or territory, long-standing feuds where people no longer even remember why it began… Such opposing forces are also a key ingredient in organised crime narratives, though they...

Cli-fi and catastrophe

We are destroying our planet. The scientists agree, there is no denying that catastrophic climate change is imminent. And yet our leaders continue to pay lip service to the issue without taking real, impactful action. If things don't change – drastically and soon – we...

Our blog

Is audio content not your bag? No worries! Every two weeks we interview some of your favourite authors, editors, and content creators on our blog!