Somewhere along the way, I seem to have become addicted to podcasts. I suspect it has a lot to do with my adeptness at finding ways to distract myself from the things I should be doing, but whatever its origin, this obsession has provided hours of entertainment, information and inspiration as I walk the dog, do the dishes, wind down for the day, or, I admit it, procrastinate.
The podcasts I subscribe to fall into two main categories: (1) Podcasts Pertaining to Writing and (2) Everything Else. Of the former, it’s taken a good many months to narrow the field to the list below. I’ve subscribed and unsubscribed to a good many others, and let me tell you, there are a fair few pretty dreadful writing podcasts out there waiting to turn a person’s ears to pudding. There were others I listened to for a few episodes and found passably interesting, but these four are the only survivors. (Which isn’t to say there aren’t other terrific podcasts on writing out there — my search was by no means exhaustive. If anyone has recommendations, please bring ’em on!)
A weekly podcast from CBC radio, Writers & Company features the inimitable Eleanor Wachtel’s thoughtful, wide-ranging in-depth interviews with authors from around the world. She is, bar none, the best interviewer of authors I have encountered. In the many (many, many) interviews I’ve heard her conduct over the years, I’ve never heard her be snippy or snotty, belittle anyone or treat her guests with anything other than respect, curiosity, and great sensitivity. She has a true gift for putting her guests at ease and for allowing the conversation to twist and turn in the most unexpected and delightful directions. It amazes me that, after doing this since 1990, she is able to make each show as fresh and fascinating as when I first began listening.
Author, blogger and consultant Joanna Penn’s weekly podcasts cover interviews with authors, social media experts, publishers, editors and a wide range of other guests, each with their own perspective on a specific aspect of the writing life. In the past few weeks her interviews have included a New York detective offering insights into the realities of modern police work, Warren Fahy talking about research for novelists, and Jim Hopkinson (Wired Magazine) talking about getting a book deal from your online platform. Fascinating stuff.
A podcast for “wannabe writers by a wannabe writer.” Host Mur Lafferty is all about keeping it real: she doesn’t pull any punches about what a hard and disheartening slog this writing life can sometimes be, but she’s also an enthusiastic cheerleader, chivvying other wannabe writers along, providing feedback, and sharing what she’s learned from her own writing journey., Her interviews with industry reps and other writers are entertaining, even when the topic isn’t relevant to my immediate interests. .
This podcast of the weeklyKUCI-FM radio program Writers on Writing is a relatively new discovery for me, although I believe it’s been around for quite a while. Produced and hosted by author Barbara DeMarco-Barrett, the show features interviews with novelists , poets and literary agents. I haven’t had a chance to listen to many episodes yet, but those I’ve heard have been interesting and useful — tips, strategies, inspiration, and fascinating glimpses into other writers’ processes.
Next up: Podcasts on Everything Else.