Although it sometimes feels like it, I don’t actually spend 24 hours a day glued to my chair, gazing helplessly into my computer monitor in the hope that the random keys one of my cats steps on will become the story I desperately want to write. Between commuting to my teaching job and getting out to exercise, I spend quite a few hours a week with my iPod headphones glued into my ears instead. But these days, I rarely listen to music – I top up my inspiration levels instead with episodes from my favourite podcasts, and I want to share these with you.
High on my list of favourites is Paula Berinstein’s The Writing Show. I’ve mentioned their various first chapter contests before but there’s a lot more there that captures my attention. For example, they have a “reality series” (although the thought of “reality” usually makes me cringe, but please read on) in which Paula is following the progress of several writers who are on the path to publication, checking in with them regularly to see if they’ve got an agent for their novel yet, or written another chapter. Sometimes the topic of the week’s podcast might not appeal to me when I read the title, but I nearly always listen all the way through to the end because I find all kinds of juicy info.
Equal favourite is definitely an Australian show off ABC Radio called The Book Show. The host, Ramona Koval, seems to be able to get all the interesting stories out of the writers she interviews and hearing “normal person” stories from successful, published writers often seems to get me back on track; plus the variety of books that get covered is pretty inspiring. And nobody’s paying me to say this, I promise.
The other writing-related podcasts that you’ll find on my little green iPod are both out of the US: Meet the Writers from Barnes and Noble and Authors on Tour which comes out of an independent book chain called The Tattered Cover. They both have their fair share of less-inspiring (for me) mainstream authors who I don’t listen to unless they really grab me in the first 60 seconds, but still enough inspiration that I continue to download them for the odd gems I find.
If anyone listens to any other writing or book podcasts that they find inspiring, I’d love to hear about them. I’m not sure I have any listening time left in my week, but there’s always those hours that I’m currently wasting by sleeping.