Sound recorder? Check
Canon batteries, chargers, and cords? Check
Zoom recorder batteries, charger, and cords? Check
Batteries for lights? Check
“Okay. I think I’ve got everything,” I said to myself out loud.
I jammed the last bits into the padded shoulder bag for all my electronic gear. It’s cheap, but it does the trick.
A few more odds and ends. Then, take a few more clothes out I don’t think I’ll need. But I’ll need that rain jacket, I’m sure. (Whoever needs a rain jacket?! I always take the damn thing and then never use it! Luckily it’s compact.)
The flight is at 8:30 am, which means we need to get up at 5 and out the door by 5:30 am to get there in plenty of time. I set my alarm and turn off the light.
I lay in the dark, terrified. What the heck do I think I’m doing? Am I going to do this?
Then the list begins…
10 reasons I should not be a podcaster:
1. I have never done this before.
2. I studied communications, but I never took broadcasting!! And journalism?One class. One stinking class. My 101 professor said I should have continued on with this line of schooling. But did I listen? No. I was doubtful of my grammarial (not even a word. It's grammatical according to google) skills, and my spelling is notorious! Nope! I stuck to the more comfortable topic of relating. HA! Boy, was I wrong! Relating takes a Ph.D.! Or Astropsycology, which isn’t even a thing!
3. I am NOT a sound engineer. I use Garage Band! Sure, Ableton and Adobe Audition but I don't know how to use either. Nope! It’s pure Apple, Garage Band for me.
4. I don’t have a team. It’s just me! No editors, or marketing team, or assistant to bounce ideas off of. Yet, I’m not totally alone. I have my family and friends. Sure, they tell me every idea I have is brilliant! I love them for it. But still... I know I could fail, hate this project, and it could flop. I’m okay with this. At least I can say I tried, right? Remembering to turn on the recorders, and making sure my camera has fresh batteries. These are little things but they make all the difference. So, I’ll make a checklist.
5. I’m driving my van halfway across the country to interview my family. And my van is old, no shocks or struts, but new tires and a fresh oil change should get me there and back.
6. I have never edited, uploaded, nor marketed a podcast before. Ears exploding? A sign I've done a terrible job mastering the sound quality of the recordings. And if no one listens to it? It means I did a crap job marketing it, or I asked terrible questions in the interviews.
7. I have no idea what questions to ask. Sure, I’ve been taking online classes, but I won’t really know how the conversation goes until I just do it! Still, it’s terrifying to not have all the answers before I ask the questions.
8. My first podcast series is going to be about the trauma my family expereinced and how we've manged to stay strong through it all. This is a big topic! Am I truly ready to tackle it? Am I the right person to tell this story? I have my doubts.
9. Podcasting is not my dream job. I have a ton of things I am curious about and want to try. Many business guru's say you need to have a solid 'why' to make it through the super challenging times. That's true. I do have a solid why. I know this is a worthwhile story. But do I have the passion for the process to push through?
10. There are 100 other things I’m interested in, and I want to do them all. Ha!
Do you ever make lists like this? Records in your head right before you execute your plan?
As a ski racer I would set the bar super high! I definitely wanted to win. As a rookie (beginner), right before a race, I did the oposite. I would do the suck list as a way to lower my expectations and give myself permission to fail. You fail a lot in ski racing. When a race can be won in a hundredth of a second, your chances of winning when you’re still learning is darn low. The suck list would help me be okay with myself for all the reasons on the list.
It’s important to know that I only needed the suck list as long as I sucked! Once ski racing felt like second nature I didn’t need reasons to be okay with myself for failing. I was finally able to fail with grace.
Now, the real question is am I okay with myself for all the reasons I suck as a podcaster? The answer is YES I AM! I’m not trying to prove anything or be the best podcaster. I’m doing this to challenge myself! Cause I’m curious! I have questions! Cool people have the answers! I’m doing this because I just am. That’s it! End of story. GOOD. NIGHT!
I finally roll over and close my eyes.
It’s morning already? Ben and I ride two hours to Minneapolis. Inside, I enjoy a complimentary massage from TSA! Yay me! Then we hop on the plane as planned, and we’re off to New Hampshire to see Bree, my kidney sister, and first interviewee.
I go over my questions on the plane and practice setting everything up in my head. Suddenly there’s turbulence and all the reasons I shouldn’t be a podcaster fall to the floor like refrigerator magnets in Stranger Things 3.
Have I mentioned I’m a fraidy-cat flier? I never use to be, but my meds make me all jittery now. I grab Ben's arm and get into a meditative state. Before I know it we’re there! I can see Manchester like a tiny Mr. Rogers Neighborhood model.
Bree picked us up in her new giant pickup truck! “Way to go, sis,” I shout when I see her. I throw my arms around her tiny waist, and the homesick subsides.
The next day is our interview, and I can’t wait to settle in with my sis and have a great conversation.
It took me aaaaaaaaaaaaaallllllllllllll morning to set up!
One light on Bree, one light on me. Except I don’t have another stand, so just one light on Bree.
I realized right before I left on the trip that the second camera I got couldn’t shoot film. What the hell?!?! How did I NOT KNOW THIS???? DUH!!!
So, I improvised. I used my cell phone. Ugh. Oh well, it worked fine. Charged the phone the night before, so it was all set to go. BUT did you know that cell phones only shoot a video for an hour? Yep! So does my Canon! One hour, and then it’s quits. I’m going to have to figure out how to change that in the settings.
Then the zoom recorder. Love that thing! We used handheld microphones since I didn’t have space to bring big microphone stands in my luggage. I’ve seen Tim Ferriss do it on his podcast videos, so it's probably fine. One teeny tiny problem though? I FORGOT TO TURN ON THE DAMN RECORDER!!!! Second duh!!! Duh duh!!! Luckily my handy little camera microphones picked up most of the sound. We’ll just look like idiots holding microphones that aren’t actually doing ANYTHING!!!! Sheesh!!
Bree gave me a big hug at the end of our interview and said she really enjoyed the experience! VICTORY! I was so relieved I could have gone straight to bed, do not pass go, do not collect $200, and be completely content. But then I had to pick up and put everything away and download all the footage onto my external hard drive. Phewy!! I was pooped!
Now only seven more interviews to go. No problem. I can do this.
My podcast is called "Showin’ Up!" It’s stories about people just like you and me who show up in their lives for no other reason than they don’t want to give up! They want to live, thrive, do good things, and find love.
The first season will air in January and will be a series of interviews with my family. We were blown apart by trauma but somehow stayed closely knit and found our way to healing. Stay Tuned!