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Sunday, July 6, 2014

Episode 133 -- I Have No Words


Episode 133 -- I Have No Words

Hello again, and welcome back.

This experiment of producing a podcast a day hasn't gone smoothly.  To produce a new podcast each day, I must have something new to say each day.  And at the moment I'm fresh out.  There really isn't that much content in my life.  It's all rather ordinary, really.

What I really need is other people's content.  I would like to be producing podcasts for other people, especially other organizations.  I'm sure there a lot of non-profits who could use a podcast of their very own.  They may not know that yet, but they really could.  And I'm willing to take those on for the simple reason it'd give me content to put out on this channel. 

I started the original podcast in 2007 because I wanted to start a podcast.  I wanted to play with the hardware and the software and the web tools I'd read about.  All the cool kids were doing podcasts.  I wanted my own.  I started the other three or four podcasts because I quickly ran out of stuff to say on the original Grizzly's Growls.  Because I don't do much of interest, so I don't have much to talk about.  Reading a book aloud for a recording isn't entirely easy to do well.  But it's easier than finding something of my own to say, day after day after day.

A year or two after starting this podcast I put together the nuts and bolts to do a podcast for the Duluth Art Institute.  By that point I had a very clear picture of what would be the coatrack on which I'd hang their podcast.  I have a Feedburner feed already set up.  I have the graphics already selected and prepared.  I know the internal mechanics I'd use to distribute their podcasts separately as well as in my own feed.  Add to that, the Institute already produces a fair amount of content in the form of email newsletters about their upcoming events. 

I could start the podcast without writing any new content, though after a point it'd be preferable to have material better suited to audio, or perhaps video.  While it's not my primary specialty, I'm a fair hand with video as well as audio.  And given the visual nature of much of their art and their activities, there'd be plenty of content to produce a weekly podcast for them.

So I put all that together, and I went in search of who to ask for permission.  And I couldn't find anyone to ask.  The people I used to know involved with the Institute just aren't anymore.  At my age, it's possible some of them are dead.  And those few perfectly nice folks I have talked to at the Institute didn't present themselves as in a position to say yes or no.  They also didn't say they couldn't say yes or no.  Nor did they say who to ask.  So that project has been waiting for permission for several years now.

I now have the knowledge to build a similar set of tools for some other non-profit, and to produce a podcast.  I doubt I'd have the time to involve myself in their other activities.  But I can record and edit and release podcasts in the middle of the night, whether or not the other participants are even awake.  I don't need prime time for podcasting, just time, and I have sufficient of that, I think.

I say non-profits because (a) they're more likely to give me the chance, and (b) I'm enough of an unknown quantity that I'd be unlikely to get paid initially.  I'd certainly be happy to produce one for money, for a commercial company, and in an ideal world I could do this stuff for a living.  But I'd need a portfolio to start with, and my portfolio so far is a bit thin on commercial-sounding content.  The books are a bit of a help, some of them turned out quite well if I do say so myself.  But I doubt there are many companies who'd pay for an audiobook.

So let me ask.  If you know of a non-profit that'd like to have a podcast, have them contact me.  My personal contact info is, well, personal.  But I do have the comment line, 218-234-CALL, that's 218-234-2255, and when you call that you're basically calling me anyway.  I ask not because I'd like to be paid, although sure, I'd like to be paid.  I'd like to be able to podcast all the time.  And maybe I will, someday.  I ask about non-profits in part because the music and such I have available are free for non-commercial use, and not for commercial use.  Don't have a lot of resources for commercial production.

It'd be easier to do a podcast for an organization here in the Duluth area, because I don't have the resources to travel at the moment.  It wouldn't be impossible, though, to put something together for someone outside of Duluth.  I'd simply have a little harder time getting the content here for the production.

I can also see possibilities in producing podcasts for some of our local political types.  When I ran for City  Council down in Ann Arbor my primary self-promotion resource was a video project produced by someone else.  And we did remarkably well, in an off-year election where there was nothing else on the ballot to vote for but my opponent or I.  You probably guessed I didn't win.  But having a couple thousand people come out to support me, that knocked my socks off.  I'm not particularly political anymore, and I sure as hell don't want to emulate some of the strident trash that has been produced in elections in recent years.  But issue pieces, or meet-the-candidate or get-out-the-vote -- yeah, I could do that.

I ask now, because I want Mike Hampston's book "Swinging Doors" to do well, and the only way I have to promote that so far is to simply put out enough content to raise the profile of my podcasts sufficiently that people, finding one, will find them all, and find "Swinging Doors" in the process.  It was a great honor to be allowed to produce the book, and I want to do right by it.  And I simply don't have enough content to fill all the hours I'd like to be producing.  If I can find it, I may at least be able to increase awareness of the book somewhat, indirectly.  If I don't have the content, I am as Evo Terra terms it, "Some dork with a microphone."  As I've said, I'd also take financial support, and there are donation buttons on the websites.  But I haven't done anything to earn it and I'm not sure what I'd do with it.

There it is, short and sweet.  Think about it and let me know, okay?  Thanks.

 Show Theme "Hot Swing" from Kevin MacLeod of Incompetech.com.

Comments via Audioboo and tag it #HeyGriz
Comment Line: 218-234-CALL   218-234-2255

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