WordCount – Freelancing in the Digital Age

By Michelle Vranizan Rafter

What freelancers should know about podcasting

with 9 comments

Podcasting sounds intimidating. Maybe it’s the word: it conjures up images of pod people from old sci-fi movies. In reality, there’s nothing scary about podcasting. It’s just another way of producing a story, albeit in audio rather than written form.

I reached that conclusion based on two recent podcasting experiences. The latest is an interview I did with Paula Berinstein, the producer and host of The Writing Show, a three-year-old podcast on writing. Some time back, I’d asked writers on LinkedIn what their secrets were to writing short, and used the answers as the basis for this post on WordCount. Paula liked what I’d written so much she asked if she could turn it into a segment on her show. The result is a 30-minute audio-only podcast that includes comments from me and some of the writers I quoted in my blog post. You can listen to it here. Check out The Writing Show for interviews, reality shows and other features covering all aspects of writing, publishing, and other topics of interest to people who write or aspire to do so.

Earlier this year, I interviewed a consultant and professional podcast producer in the course of researching a story for Inc. magazine’s IncTechnology.com Website on podcasting for small businesses. The producer, Peter Brusso, with Infocard CC, suggested that he tape our phone interview and turn it into a podcast. The segment is up on his Website, and you can hear it by clicking here.

If you’ve been in the business long enough, you’ll realize podcasting is just the latest form of audio news. Way back when, newspapers did something similar when they offered telephone-based “InfoLine” updates on sports, weather and local news. When local cable news channels came along, newspapers reporters stepped in front of TV cameras to talk about stories they were working on, a crude from of video podcast. The moral of the story: the medium may have changed, but need for a good story is still the same.

9 Responses

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  1. […] noticed. Paula Berinstein, producer of The Writing Show, recently interviewed me for a segment on how to write short. Another interviewed me recently for a story about writers who blog for an upcoming issue of the […]

  2. […] I was interviewed by Paula Berinstein, producer of The Writing Show podcast, about a post I did on writing short. When I interviewed Paul Brusso for an IncTechnology.com story on how to create a podcast, he taped […]

  3. […] About Podcasting This link presents an article on podcasting for freelancers, specifically freelance writers. […]

  4. […] hit by budget cuts and layoffs  also writes stories, shoots her own video for them and records podcasts – and expects anyone on her staff to be able to do the same. Take away for freelancers: If staffers […]

  5. I’ve been thinking about podcasts, but my husband tells me “they are so yesterday.” This leaves me wondering what’s next. Webcasts? Video podcasts? What’s the next ‘big thing’? I’m poking around to all of my friends in tech media to see what they have to say on the matter.


    December 31, 2008 at 4:22 pm

  6. Opinions about podcasts really depend on who’s doing the talking: the insider tech guys might say it’s dead, but there’s still a lot going on at the corporate/SMB level. For your own business, if it’s easier to dip a toe in the water by starting with a podcast, then go for it. At least you’ve got it under your belt and you can move on from there. Sometimes you have to ignore the inside baseball talk of the technorati & pay attention to the crowd downstream from where you are.

    Thanks for reading,


    Michelle Rafter

    December 31, 2008 at 4:28 pm

  7. Indeed, but keeping your ear to the ground is vital to being aware of up-and-coming technologies. While podcasting is indeed still valid for some of us, I’m trying to keep abreast on the new stuff in hopes of being an early adopter of the next big thing. FWIW, I really don’t like the idea of being a slave to media trends, but when your income depends on being media savvy, it becomes a necessity!


    January 2, 2009 at 11:57 am

  8. […] you can add value to your writing by learning SEO basics, HTML, Photoshop, InDesign, blogging, podcasting or other multimedia skills that add dimension to your storytelling, and your portfolio. This added […]

  9. […] Journalism Camp agenda. But the day is likely to include discussions of digital storytelling, podcasting, SEO for journalists, new media revenue models and […]

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