I’m going through a weird phase, podcast-wise. Podcast-listening-wise, to be specific. It’s one that comes and goes, and is rather annoying while it’s in progress.
I currently don’t want to listen to my own podcasts.
Under normal circumstances, I try to listen to most every podcast I do.* I think it’s a valuable step towards improving–both as a producer/editor and as an on-mic panelist/host. Sometimes it’s a little uncomfortable to hear myself at places where I stumble, but for the most part, I enjoy listening. I even sometimes feel proud of my contributions. And that pride comes more and more often now that I’ve been podcasting for years.
Not so, these last couple weeks. I find myself bumping shows with lots of me down the playlist repeatedly. I still listen to eps of The Incomparable or Game Showwhen there are large panels, but my desire to listen to an episode has an inverse ratio to how Erika-heavy it is. Lazy Doctor Who is currently excruciating.
I’m honestly not sure why that is. I just get itchy inside when I hear myself talk–nervous and anxious in a way I certainly wasn’t when I recorded the episodes. Luckily, this has happened before, and I’m sure it’ll pass eventually. It’s just a weird thing that I thought I’d observe here.
Please note that I’m emphatically not posting this as a way of fishing for compliments. (Seriously, please don’t.) Cerebrally, I still think I’m good at what I do, so I’m not looking for reassurance. I just figured that if other people feel this way from time to time, it might be nice to know they’re not alone.
*This may be changing soon. My time to listen to ‘casts has dwindled dramatically. I’m considering a transition to something more like spot-checking my own appearances so that I can still listen to other people’s podcasts!
No, this is not a treatise on North American culture and our fascination with/addiction to celebrity. The internet is littered with thinkpieces about that. This is simply a personal observation inspired by events of the past weekend. I attended the terrific Now Hear This Podcast Festival in Anaheim, California. It was a fabulous weekend for many reasons, and one is that it really made me think—and brought me to a realization, which boils down to this tl;dr:
It’s all relative.
Early in the weekend I tweeted this:
Just saw the @pchh crew in the lobby & quietly squeed/nerded out. 2 min later, an excited listener approached us. #itsallrelative
It was 100% true. We did have a happy listener track us down to hang out with us at the con. And I did have a serious fangirl moment myself mere moments before that. I listen to Pop Culture Happy Hourevery week and admire the people who make that show happen. I did not go up and talk to them at that moment because A) they were just checking in to the hotel, which is a shitty time to accost someone, and 2) I am, at heart, a shy introvert. (Despite any perceived evidence to the contrary.)
What I did was attend their show and enjoy every minute of it—perhaps especially when Linda Holmes gave special recognition to Jessica Reedy for producing the show—as someone who does a lot of the unseen work for several podcasts, I’m always thrilled when the hidden engine of a program gets recognition. Afterwards, Steven walked up to Jessica, shook her hand, and thanked her for all her hard work. I was like “Why didn’t I think of that?” (Answer: shy introvert.) But I smiled and thanked her as well. Being at the same con all weekend, I wandered past the PCHH crew more than once, but didn’t get up the courage to say hi (or to thank them for inspiring our “happy things” segment on Verity!) until they were literally on their way out of the hotel. (And thus I missed meeting fellow Wisconsinite Stephen Thompson.)
Anyway, the point is not how nice they are or how cool they were or even the fact that Glen Weldon knew my name:
Steven and I have now spent two glorious days outdoors watching dancers and martial arts demos and eating and drinking our way “around the world” of the Edmonton Heritage Festival. Yesterday we managed to leave at just the right time to avoid the thunderstorm that later closed down the festival. It did rain on us quite a bit during the walk home, but the heavens didn’t properly open up until we were in the car on the way to the grocery store. (That was another adventure — a very wet and occasionally scary one. Puddles on the road are no joke in Edmonton this year.*)
Today we were a little more targeted in our dining — we’d walked around and perused the menus yesterday, so we knew where we wanted to go. A real winner this year has been the Chile booth. The cheese empanada was so good we got it both days, and I’m pretty sure I’m getting another one when we go back tomorrow. It was THAT GOOD. Also, their ice cream was to die for.
I may do a write up of all of my favorites later, but for now, suffice it to say, this is still my favorite weekend of the whole year in Edmonton. And this year it was made even better by a delightful little soirée at our friends’ place last night. It still feels novel to have real-life friends in Edmonton (outside of the ones we regularly podcast with anyway). We were in good geek company, so we got to jabber on about lots of geeky media properties, and, one of my favorite topics, PODCASTING! Yeah, it was a great night.
Related—if you’re not listening to these podcasts, you might want to fix that:
Montreal Sauce – interviews with makers, creatives, and friends, plus strange quizzes about 80s actors
Film Frown– a podcast that frowns about bad movies so you don’t have to
I started this blog waaaaay back in 2011. My goal at the time was to watch geeky TV and work on knitting the season 18 Doctor Who scarf. If you read my posts regularly, you’ll know that plan didn’t exactly continue with any strength or regularity. In fact, until recently, I hadn’t even picked up the scarf since well before I moved to Canada. And I moved just over two years ago.
The leave-taking on Monday morning was as wistful and melancholy as ever. It’s hard saying goodbye to friends knowing I’m not gonna see them for a whole year. At least the trip home was smooth and trouble-free, and I had lots of warm memories to combat the cold in Edmonton. Happily, we didn’t even have to clear any snow off the car in the airport parking lot.
I’ve spent some time thinking about this year’s Gally, not just the events, but some of the things I noticed about myself and others. Things I liked, and things I didn’t. I want to cover a couple of them here.
Come Together, Right Now, Oh Gally
One of my favorite things to see at conventions is people who kinda know each other (or only know each other online) getting to meet and spend time together. This is especially great when they get along as well (or better) in person as they do online. This happens left and right at Gally, but a few instances stood out to me in particular. Continue reading →
Today is apparently International Podcast Day. I’ve got an awful lot to thank podcasts for. They changed my life so very much, and for the better.
It all started with The Nerdist. That led me to Radio Free Skaro. After that, nothing was the same. RFS led me to a passel of other great Doctor Who podcasts. And, of course, RFS also led me to my husband, Steven. It led me to a whole, huge group of friends-who-feel-like-family, scattered over the entire globe. It led me to Doctor Who conventions. It led me to Canada. Yeah, I have a lot to thank podcasts for.
And now, I’m making them myself! I adore my fellow Verities, and while making Verity! takes a lot of work, it’s so incredibly worth it. Diving back into Babylon 5 after many years for The Audio Guide to Babylon 5 has been an even bigger treat than I anticipated! (And it means I get to talk to Chip and Shannon every-other-week, so that’s pretty fab too.) I can’t thank Jason enough for inviting me to become a panelist on The Incomparable. It’s broadened my horizions in a lot of great nerd ways! And it means I get to play Dungeons and Dragons again for Total Party Kill. SO FUN! Producing the Uncanny Magazine Podcast means I get to hear (and now, read!) amazing stories every month (plus catch up with Lynne and Michael) And Lazy Doctor Who means I get some quality time with my spouse watching our favorite show. Can’t beat that.
I’ll close by listing (in no particular order) the podcasts that I listen to (pretty much) every episode of. Continue reading →
No, this is not a post about yoga. Though considering how long it’s been since I’ve done yoga regularly, that’s scary too. No, this is a post about trying something new–or at least trying something publicly that you haven’t done a whole lot (and never beyond the confines of your own home).
It’ll probably come as no surprise that this is podcast-related, so it’s not as scary as it could be. But despite the oodles of podcasting I’ve done over the last few years, new things can be intimidating–even new things you’ve really wanted to try.