I’ve been sitting on this project for a while now, working on it a bit here and a bit there, tweaking this and that for months, which is a bit sad given that it’s all of 12 minutes long. So, I’ve decided that it’s time for me to flip the damn switch on this thing and put it out there. This is my first attempt at producing, for lack of a better term, an “NPR-ish”, non-fiction audio piece (plus text preamble), and I would love to hear what people think. I’ve got a few more ideas kicking around, and especially if people are into this, I may make more.
Postcards from DragonCon
So there I was at DragonCon, one of the biggest scifi/fantasy conventions in the world. I was there because two audio theater podcasts with which I’ve had the pleasure of being involved, Second Shift and The Mask of Inanna, were up for Parsec awards (Inanna won!), but other than a short awards ceremony, I really had no idea what to expect from or do at such a huge convention.
It’s easy to feel alone in a crowd at an event like DragonCon so, reminded of my exchange with Mr. Glass, and encouraged by Seth Boyer, a musician and podcaster I met there, I… just started interviewing people; anyone who would talk to me. This is the result of that project. I recorded about 40 interviews over the course of two days, mostly between the hours of 1am and 6:30am (yes, am), and was only able to use a small fraction of them in this piece. The biggest lesson I learned is that when you go into an interview project without a specific narrative in mind (which seems to me the most honest way to do it), building a narrative out of what you get can be surprisingly difficult. I got a lot of great advice on this subject and others from Melissa Galvez, a public radio pro who was a huge help to me as I worked on editing this project. Thanks, Melissa! (by the way, as of this writing, she’s in the job market, in case anyone’s looking!)
One thing I wish I could have worked into the piece was some acknowledgement of the issues the con has had recently, which range from a problematic (if legally binding) relationship with its co-founder to conflicts with fan groups. I say this not because I want to bring down the many people who work hard to make Dragon*Con great, but because I think they’re nonetheless important issues that warrant acknowledgement and due consideration in any introduction to the con that aspires to be comprehensive. Shortly after my return I wrote about the two biggest issues of which I’m aware, along with my general impressions of the con as a first-time attendee, here. Edit: someone else has a writeup detailing some of the legal complexities here.
Music Credits (in order of audience):
Special thanks to Jamendo.com and FreeMusicArchive.org, where I found most of the music for this show, all of which is used with permission and/or under a creative commons license.
If I do anything else like this, I’ll put it up on the RSS feed at http://geekdome.net/podcast/