How to Podcast: Notes on formatting and subject matter
Trying a new format. I've been wanting to do a podcast for a few months but haven't settled on a topic or format. So I'm going to work it out here.
Initially, I wanted to include two co-hosts to help with the presentation and work. Multiple persons allow for personalities to play off of one another, which is useful no matter the category of podcast. In historical or political podcasts, it allows people to challenge each other's viewpoints and conclusions when they stray from facts and into speculation. In a comedy podcast it allows different forms of humor to act off each other's comedic stylings. Think of your typical "funny man/ straight man" combination.
Unfortunately incorporating others requires their full participation. With something as large an undertaking as launching a podcast help would be essential.
As it is, I've decided against co-hosts. I can't think of a person I know who would be as obsessed with the project as I would. I can't think of anyone I could rely on who has the time to make for a podcast. This means that without another human element, comedy as a genre is out. Look, I love to make people laugh. I like it when I brighten up someone's day. That being said, I know myself well enough to say I cannot do comedy alone without it coming out forced, artificial, and lame. If you think you have reliable people, go for it. But the fewer people involved the less margin for error there will be in output and expectation.
So there are two formats I like for a noncomedy podcast. I either want something short, sweet, and well researched or long, detailed, and well researched. I think for my purposes something 30 minutes or so long telling a story that's well researched would be manageable each week, possibly every two weeks. I'd love to do something as in-depth as Dan Carlin's Hardcore History, but I think the time between episodes would make getting a following difficult, and the more I'd try to paint a complete picture of a tale or event, the less pleased I'd be with less. The end result would be an obsessive six-hour-long podcast on Christ knows what. I think a shorter format, in general, makes sense for a new podcast, likely no longer than an hour or so.
There are podcasts for just about everything you can think of. I considered tales from history, and I also considered true crime or paranormal stuff. When it comes down to it, I think I'd like to tell myths and legends in their numerous variations. I had also considered just making a general podcast, covering whatever topic I find interesting that week, but honestly who wants to subscribe to that? I think it's important you choose a topic you really love to learn about.
I could be deadpan, comedic, or interested. I think interested is the best approach, especially given the topic. Measured excitement allows for the occasional corny joke or hammy line. At the same time, so long as I make sure not to declare too many definites, I can keep the listener curious and interested as well. I must be sure to not do this to the point where I never say anything outright. I think tone should be a direct reflection of what the podcast you envision needs.
I think I need to set up a pseudo-soundbooth with a blanket or two, but I can pick up my voice on a Blue Snowball. They're not particularly expensive, and you can get them on Amazon. The quality is excellent for audio or game recording.