10 NH-based podcasts for your listening pleasure
How to create your own show
By Kelly Sennott
One recent Thursday, a Derry Public Library study transformed into a recording studio for the 25th episode of Exeter children’s author Paul Durham’s podcast, Telling Lies to Children. For that show, Durham was scheduled to interview local middle-grade writer Erin E. Moulton, who also works at the library but was off-hours that morning. They tiptoed by the front desk, tucked themselves away in the tiny room and shut the door. Durham turned on his computer, pulled out his microphone and, before pressing record, asked how to pronounce her name. She clarified and offered some history to the “Moulton” surname, too, inadvertently giving Durham fodder to start his show. “I’m with Erin Moulton — Moulton meaning, ‘from the mule farm,’” Durham said, laughing. “Thanks for being on the show.” For the next 40 minutes, they talked about the magic of that first novel (hers, Flutter, came to her while she was standing on her head in a yoga pose), the struggle of rejection and the importance of remaining “hopelessly optimistic.” Podcasts — the name combines “iPod” and “broadcast” — are episodic audio series you can download onto your phone, computer or other devices. It’s kind of like the new blog, except you can do anything while enjoying one. Drive! Clean! Walk your dog! HIPPO | MAY 18 - 24, 2017 | PAGE 14
Cook! Pretend to work! (Just kidding, don’t actually do that.) And, now that the technology’s so inexpensive, they’re not that hard to create; you can record them anywhere — a closet, a basement, a library study room — and they can be about anything. “Frankly, anybody can do a podcast,” said Durham, who’d never even burned a CD before starting his show. “There are podcasts everywhere, on topics from politics to longform fiction.” If you haven’t caught the podcast bug yet, you’re in luck. Podcasts have become increasingly mainstream since they became a thing just over a decade ago, according to internationalpodcastday.com (which is Sept. 30, if you were wondering). Formats range from one-person casts to heavily-produced shows involving sound effects, interviews and lots of editing. There are even fictionalized podcasts. Some radio stations offer shows or segments of their shows as podcasts, which you can access via iTunes or on the radio station website, and some are run independently. Here are 10 New Hampshire-made podcasts tackling a variety of topics, from children’s literature to true crime, plus tips from these creators on how to put on your own show.
Podcast: Telling Lies to Children, a 30- to 45-minute show on children’s literature featuring authors and children’s lit experts Host: Paul Durham, an Exeter-based children’s author
New episodes: Once or twice a month Exeter author Paul Durham began recording Telling Lies to Children — aimed at adults who “live and breathe” children’s literature — last August. Each show starts with a bit from “In the Hall of the Mountain King,” composed by Edvard Grieg, and to date, Durham has interviewed fellow children’s authors, librarians, bookstore managers, literary agents and MFA directors, though episodes also include answers to readers’ questions and bring listeners to different places, like the Boston Public Library or the New Hampshire Children’s Librarians Fall Conference. Durham is fairly new to the children’s literature world; he published his first novel, The Luck Uglies, a tween fantasy story, in 2014, after having spent the earlier part of his career working as a lawyer. He began listening to podcasts about two years ago, one
of his favorites being The Joe Rogan Experience, hosted by comedian and retired martial artist Joe Rogan. “He started his podcast as a way to hang out with all his comedian friends. He’d just have them all come over to his house, and they’d talk, and it seemed like they were having a great time,” Durham said. He wanted to do with children’s literature what Rogan did with comedy. “I’m sort of an introvert, and I met some cool people when I got into the publishing world. … I’m not really good at keeping in touch, but I didn’t want to just lose track of everyone, as I’m prone to do with people over time,” Durham said. “Authors are not nearly as funny as comedians, of course, but I thought [creating a podcast] would be a fun way to keep in touch with authors I’m friendly with. … And if there are librarians and media specialists and teachers who want to listen in, maybe they’d get turned on to a new author.” He said Telling Lies to Children doesn’t sound as professional as an NPR podcast, but it’s more popular than he anticipated, averaging 180 unique listeners daily. And it did help him snag media interviews, and even small jobs — after his on-air interview with Cathryn Mercier, director of the Center for the Study of Children’s Literature at Simmons College, she invited him back to teach a workshop at the school. After recording, Durham said he spends about two hours editing and posting episodes online and various podcast sites, like iTunes