On Podcasting

Over the past year, I’ve grown a bit of a fancy for podcasts. I was addicted to Serial the moment it entered my life, and now I spend an inordinate amount of my time catching up on older episodes of Tim Ferriss’s podcast. When I don’t need to come up with words, other people’s words are the best background noise for me.

Among all of the other ideas and aspirations for 2016, starting a podcast has been creeping up the list. I still don’t know what I’d talk about – I figure that can wait until after November, particularly given the fact that I’m in no immediate rush to get it launched – but it’s been on my mind for quite some time.

Taking a direct audio route has a lot of advantages over using video. Most notably, for me at least, is the fact that I’m not necessarily the most comfortable person on camera. I’ve gotten better at talking to the camera, particularly this year, but I can’t say I’ll ever be as comfortable attempting to come up with something on the spot when I can see the camera looking at me.

Historically, I’m much better on camera when I’m with someone. A video I did with my friend Clara made me realise how little like myself I really am on video, and that’s not from a lacking of trying. I’ve dealt with the anxiety of appearing on camera already, but I can never really force my way out of my shell. I believe the kids these days call that “minus craic”, but I may be a few years too late for that phrase.

While I’ll still be keeping up my YouTube channel – and, I swear, there will be a new video soon – I’m hoping the podcasting route would at least allow me to get over the worries over how I look while I’m speaking. I’m not just talking about the likes of hair and clothing, either. I mean my face, how it moves when I talk, how it looks on camera. Sometimes I look to edit a video, and I can’t get over how I look in a still frame. Sometimes I look angry, when I’m not, and that bothers me too much.

I WASN'T EVEN ANGRY

Screencap from my last video. I WASN’T EVEN ANGRY

Basically, I’d like to hide my face a little bit.

Additionally, separating content from my personal space and my professional space is a lot more easily achieved if I don’t aim to talk about all the stuff I might talk about on a podcast on the channel in which I talk about nerdy stuff and post poems and whatnot. I’ll still use that space when I want something artsy or nerdy out in the open, but a new space on the interwebs for professional content – even away from this blog, which I still consider an entirely personal environment – is crying out to me.

What do you think? As well as all of the other crazy things I have planned for myself next year, do you think podcasting would be a good idea?

What are your thoughts on duration of episode? How about format – solo or interviews? And where does one even go about hosting a podcast? These are the things I need to consider (as well as the actual topic and contents of the podcast…) but I’d love to hear your feedback on that while I begin the mental stretches towards pushing this into ‘Currently in Production’ status.

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About Paul Carroll

Paul Carroll is a writer, born, raised and still living in Dublin. By day he's a student and bookseller, by night he writes fiction and uses social media.
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2 Responses to On Podcasting

  1. jessiblah says:

    I’ve planned to do a podcast for two years now. I did do one during school with a friend, and oh my goodness it’s so much fun when you’ve got someone. Maybe you could do something on writing or book reviews? There’s a great podcast series called “Scriptnotes,” which is by two screenwriters who talk a bit about the art of screenwriting, interview others in the business and also news about films and scripts. It’s very interesting.

    Also, don’t be silly. You don’t look weird or something on camera. Don’t hide. You’ve a lovely face.

    • Paul Carroll says:

      Oh, I wasn’t aware of that one. I might give it a listen through before I get started on my own. Thanks Jessica! (Also, not sure I get to read enough to do regular book reviews…but I could definitely consider something on writing!)

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