I drew upon the golden days of radio when I ventured into the modern world of podcasting.
I was addicted to radio serials as a youth.
I raced home from school, banged the front door off the wall, and planted myself before the radio each afternoon.
Captain Midnight had left me hanging by my fingernails the previous episode, and for twenty-four hours I impatiently waited to learn if he’d escape the clutches of his Nazi enemy, Baron Von Karp.
And that’s the intent of The Authors Show, to excite its listeners to bang their doors off the wall as they rush to buy the featured author’s book—so when they set up an interview date I was excited but nervous, too. Could I do what my heroes did each weekday?
Could I, without being quite so melodramatic, convince my listeners to read my last O’Shaughnessy book, Strawberry Summer?
How I ended up on a podcast
After submitting an application I heard back from the international “radio” program, The Authors Show, inviting me to participate.
At first I was hesitant because I’m technologically challenged and The Author Show is actually a podcast. In order to record the interview, I’d have to use a conferencing program called “Zoom” on my iPad and dial in with my telephone at the same time. All new experiences!
Fortunately, the folks from The Author Show provided exact instructions for how to use Zoom. I had a few weeks to practice with the application and after a few run throughs it was actually pretty easy.
They also gave me some hints about what they might ask – example questions.
I was told that Linda Thompson would perform the interview and I listened to several of her prior interviews at the Author Show website to get a better feel for her questions and style. After spending a few days thinking about questions she might ask and practicing a few responses, I felt I was ready.
The interview was scheduled for June
On the prescribed day, I made the telephone call to Arizona at the time the interview was scheduled. Linda answered and told me what to expect and spent a few minutes before the actual interview making me feel comfortable and getting me used to the interactions. Then her questions and my answers commenced.
Linda asked me three or four questions about my latest book Strawberry Summer and several questions about my three other O’Shaughnessy books, Giddyap Tin Lizzie, Bittersweet Harvest, and Puppet on a String.
She also asked about my four children’s books, Wyatt’s Woods, Aubrey’s Attic, Grayson’s Garage, and Bellamy’s Ball. In addition, Linda asked about authors who influence my writing and about my writing style.
I hope my answers were half as good as her thoughtful questions.
A special passage
At the end of the interview I read a short excerpt from a section of the book where Catherine writes a letter to her son describing how she is feeling. I chose this passage because it clearly summarizes Catherine’s feelings about her life now that she was at an advanced age. It is a major theme of this book that I thought many readers (or listeners) could relate to.
Based on the following comment, I think I made the right choice.
I thoroughly enjoyed Skip’s “radio show”, esp. William’s letter. Yes, I had to wipe few tears as I pictured myself as Catherine! Good job, Skip!
On the whole despite the hurdles of technology and distance, I found my interview with Linda Thompson and my experience with the Author Show to be pleasant, interesting, and a valuable learning experience.
After the show went live I was able to keep this 14-minute recording of my interview. I’ve received great feedback from folks who listened and I hope you enjoy it too!