Monday, March 25, 2019

10 Literary Podcasts all Writers Should Listen To

Writers are always being told that if they want to continue improving their craft, the best thing they can do is read. But if you’re in the middle of writing or publishing a book, looking at another book — or even a blog post — is probably the last thing you want to do with your time. Luckily, there’s no need to read when you can start listening… to these ten podcasts! Each of them offer insight and advice for writers and book-lovers alike.

1. Quick and Dirty Tips for Better Writing

Raise your hand if your browser history contains searches like “regardless or irregardless,” “double negatives,” or “purposely or purposefully.” It’s alright, you’re not alone! If you find yourself frequently turning to Google for answers like these, the podcast Quick and Dirty Tips for Better Writing will likely be for you. In episodes that range from 7-20 minutes, Grammar Girl Mignon Fogarty puts the most confusing and long-pondered vocabulary questions to rest in a funny and insightful style.

2. Writing Excuses

Disclaimer: this podcast doesn’t provide writers with excuses to avoid their craft. Instead, by going over various writing techniques and trends, the 15-20 minute episodes aim to give authors an excuse to write by educating them more about their craft! Come for the funny tag-line — “Fifteen minutes long, because you’re in a hurry, and we’re not that smart” — and stay for the advice that can truly improve your prose.

3. The Creative Penn Podcast

Let’s be honest, Joanna Penn has kind of become the BeyoncĂ© of the indie author world. And while we can’t personally remark on her singing chops, we can attest to the quality of her podcast. Tune in every Monday for inspirational episodes that provide authors with the know-how to tread the unknown waters of self-publishing, plus tips on what goes into being an author-preneur.

4. I Should Be Writing

If you can relate to the title of this podcast right off the bat, you will definitely connect with the honest episodes that detail the ups, downs, and emotional roadblocks that all career writers eventually encounter. It’s hosted by award-winning science fiction author Mur Lafferty, and often features interviews from a variety of other genre authors. If you like your podcasts with a bit more edge, you can also check out her I Should Be Writing spin-off, Ditch Diggers, which comes with a warning that it contains explicit content and is not kid-friendly.

5. A Way With Words

An hour-long National Public Radio (NPR) program, A Way With Words explores language through the lens of history, culture, and family. It’s hosted by author/journalist Martha Barnette and lexicographer/linguist Grant Barrett, who discuss slang, old sayings, new words, grammar, word origins, regional dialects, family expressions, and more. It’s a great program for authors who want to go back to the very basics of any piece of writing: expression through language.

6. What Should I Read Next?

If you’re in the middle of writing a book and you find yourself unable to detach from thoughts of your own prose, this podcast will help you fall in love with reading for pleasure all over again. Each week, host Anne Bogel has a guest on to discuss their reading lists, encouraging listeners to make reading an everyday part of their lives.

7. DIY MFA Radio

If you’re the kind of writer who feels like learning is never over and there’s constant room for improvement, you will get a lot out of the industry experts and authors who appear on Gabriela Pereira’s podcast, DIY MFA Radio. Including the likes of Sara Dessen, Jojo Moyes, Eoin Colfer, and Orson Scott Card, each episode aims to be as educational — and also as accessible — as possible. But don’t let the comparison to academia fool you: these are not dry lectures, but fun and relatable insights into the experiences of seasoned writers.

8. Story Grid

“Helping you become a better writer.” This is Story Grid’s tagline, and if it sounds too good to be true, think again! The podcast has over 150 episodes under its belt and has been capturing authors’ attention for years with episodes that cover thought-provoking questions like “Do you have to be depressed to be a good writer?” and “What if my writing sucks?” So if you’ve ever felt defeated by writer’s block or enjoy discussing what the “X factor” of a truly great story is, then yes, Story Grid will help you become a better writer.

9. Longform

Yes, most of the podcasts on this list are aimed at fiction writers. But nonfiction authors aren’t without their own insightful programs! Longform, for instance, features lengthy (as the name suggests) interviews with writers, with a focus on journalists and nonfiction writers. Each episode dives into the writer’s past and maps out how they got to the current point of their publishing career.

10. Bestseller

We couldn’t really make a list of the ten best podcasts for writers without including our own, could we? Hosted by Reedsy’s Casimir M. Stone, each episode follows a different part of an independent author’s self-publishing journey. It starts at the very beginning, from that lightbulb moment that gave them the idea for their book, to the very end: publishing and marketing their book. If publishing your own book feels like a long and winding road, Bestseller will give you reassurance that you’re not alone, while helping you find your own footing.


nashvillecats2 said...

Most interesting to read, thanks for sharing these tips with us. Most useful to know.


Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Great list! Adding those to my list of podcasts.

Natalie Aguirre said...

I'm just starting to listen to podcasts. Added some of yours to my list. Thanks.

L. Diane Wolfe said...

I need the I should Be Writing podcast.

Susan R. Mills said...

Thanks! This is great info.

Pat Hatt said...

Sounds like a great list indeed

Shah Wharton said...

I'm only just getting into Podcasts. I love a few horror podcasts and as I'm studying editing, there's a podcast I listen to for that. I need to listen more. Much more. So thanks for this. Actually, I think I have been subscribed to Joanna Penn's for some time without realising? The curse of a terrible memory. Lol!

Mirka Breen said...

Thanks X10!

H.R. Bennett said...

Ooo~ Good recommendations. I listen more than read recently so this could be really useful. Maybe get everything back to where it was and get flowing again. Thanks!

Elizabeth Seckman said...

I have a few podcasts to add to my line up!

cleemckenzie said...

I love good podcasts, so thanks for the great list to guide me in choosing.

Lisa said...

I’m pumped! Can’t wait to listen. I love podcasts! Now I can listen to ones that pertain to my work.

Sherry Ellis said...

Great list! If I have some time, I'll have to listen to a few of these.

Trisha said...

This is a great list. Thanks for sharing!