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Resources for Writers

Really Useful Links for Writers: Podcasts

Article by Paul FitzSimons ©.
Posted in Resources (, ).

One of my first interviews for writing.ie (wow was I nervous that day) was with the renowned script-writing coach Pilar Alessandra. Through her long and distinguished career with Amblin and Dreamworks, Pilar knows everything worth knowing about screenwriting. Pilar runs regular screenwriting classes in L.A. but she also educates – and entertains – a far wider slice of the writing community with her weekly Podcast.

A Podcast is a digitally-broadcast episode or episodic series consisting of audio or video content. This content is available for streaming or download to a computer or mobile device. Podcasts are used extensively for education but also for entertainment and news.

Since its inception, the Podcast has been enthusiastically embraced by the writing community and there is an ever-increasing range of podcasts on the subject of writing – everything from general tips on prose- and script-writing to more specific aspects of writing, such as starting a novel, developing characters and writing dialogue. Podcasts bring us interviews with famous writers and are even being used by writers to publish audio versions of their own novels and short stories.

Set up by writers Justin Macumber and Terry Mixon, the Dead Robot’s Society offers a weekly Podcast with everything that we writers – whether aspiring or established– needs to hone our craft, publish our writing and carve out a career as a writer. They interview successful authors about the nature of their writing and travel around the US visiting places of interest to writers.

WritingExcuses.com offers us short fifteen-minute podcasts featuring invaluable advice from all aspects of the writing world such as making science fiction believable and asks questions such as ‘What do we do when truth is stranger than fiction?’

Closer to home, The Irish Writers Centre recently ran a series of podcasts with interviews with writers such as Mike McCormack and Mary Costello. The acclaimed Roddy Doyle was also interviewed and he talked about his writing process, how his mother inspired him to read and why self-publishing was the sensible route for The Commitments.

As mentioned, Pilar Alessandra broadcasts the weekly OnthePage podcast, in which she tells us everything we need to know about the world of screenwriting. She talks to some of the leading figures in the world of movies and TV and, in her latest episode, talks to Garry Mann from Comedy Central who tells us about the direction, tone and taste of this TV channel dedicated to comedy.

To hear stories by some of our most famous writers transformed into audio, it’s worth checking The Guardian newspaper’s short story podcast. Famous works by James Joyce, Ama Ata Aidoo, Charles Dickens and Franz Kafka get the audio treatment and are read by distinctive voices such as Will Self, Simon Callow and Sebastian Barry.

For those of us who would like to hear our own writing published in audio format, there’s BoundOff. Boundoff is a monthly audio literary audio magazine with a mission to merge the oral tradition of storytelling with new technology to create a digital audio magazine. Here, we can submit our short stories of between 250 and 2500 words and, if accepted, Boundoff’s team of readers and podcast engineers will produce and broadcast an audio version. We can also listen to short stories by some of today’s best up-and-coming writers.

Join The Society.

Dead Robot’s Society offers a weekly writing Podcast with everything we needs to hone our craft.

“The Dead Robots’ Society was created in an effort to offer advice and support to aspiring writers.”



What’s Your Excuse?

WritingExcuses.com offers us short podcasts featuring invaluable advice from all aspects of the writing world.

“Fifteen minutes long, because you’re in a hurry, and we’re not that smart.”



Closer To Home.

The Irish Writers’ Centre’s Podcast features interviews with some of Ireland’s most acclaimed authors.



Hollywood Calling.

Pilar Alessandra’s weekly On The Page podcast tells us everything we need to know about writing for the movies, TV and the gaming industry.

“We cover feature writing, TV writing, pitching, webisode writing, video game writing, writer branding, agents and managers, procedural writing, writing for reality, personal networking and more.”



Famous Writers Get The Audio Treatment…

On The Guardian newspaper’s podcast, we can hear audio versions of stories by some of the most famous writers in the world.

“Each programme features an interview with a leading author and a reading of the author’s favourite short story by another writer.”



…And So can We.

Boundoff gives us the opportunity to hear our own stories in audio format.

“We aspire to showcase work that is compelling and driven by narrative, with a force that keeps the listener listening.”



(c) Paul FitzSimons

Paul FitzSimons is a screenwriter and novelist and has written the novel ‘Burning Matches’ and a number of scripts for film and TV. He has worked as a storyline writer on RTE’s ‘Fair City’. His short stories are published in ‘Who Brought The Biscuits’ by The Naas Harbour Writers. Paul likes crime thrillers, good coffee and Cadbury’s chocolate. He doesn’t like country-and-western music or people who don’t indicate on roundabouts.

Paul also runs the Script Editing service Paul | The | Editorpaulfitzsimons.com

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