What are you podcasting?

I am admittedly late on anything that’s trending. And usually by a few years. So if everyone got into podcasting 5 years ago, I am slowly delving into it now.

The lockdown triggered a passion to try running again. And after a few runs where I got bored of the same old music I was always listening to, I decided to try something new. Let us see what ’em podcasts have I thought.

So I did give it a try. There were some hits and misses, but overall it was like reading different genres -discovering worlds you don’t know, opening up to new perspectives, which is always great.

Here’s a few I tried and how I felt about them.

The knowledge-project interview featuring Brian Koppleman, the writer director of the new Showtime hit show Billions. I absolutely loved this 1 hour piece, I heard it over two installments and it flowed so beautifully that I didn’t want to be distracted from the podcast.

In the interview, Brian touches upon so many things I have pondered about over the past decade, and he puts them into perspective in such a structured manner. I am hoping to convince you to listen to it (I wasn’t able to place the link here). Some highlight topics covered in his interview:

  1. The impact and importance of daily meditation – he tries to do it 20 minutes twice a day
  2. The impact of doing ‘morning pages’ – just writing down 2-3 long pages in the morning without stopping the pen. How it helps with eventually freeing up the mind for the day and leads to a lightness of being.
  3. Overcoming fears – how he overcame his fears and decided to pursue writing as a career, at 30.
  4. Writing process for shows – how he and his best friend have researched and written shows and movies, winning some and falling down really bad with some!
  5. Handling failure – it may look very cliched for someone who bounces back from a big failure to speak of it. But he does it as a Q&A and not so much as to brag about it. It is so wonderful to listen and learn from such people!
  6. Billions -of course he is asked, and answers questions about the characters of the show -their nuanced complexities, why some of them are created that way. e.g. why even a good guy’s flaws have to be shown, to make ordinary people understand that they need to be able to see such things.
  7. Writing in general -how much he enjoys this creative process and doesn’t think about the outcomes.

I quite regularly listen to Wait, Wait, Don’t Tell Me -the NPR News quiz that is hilarious and fun, what with limericks and jokes about current events, especially in America. I was a huge fan of this during my late 2000s when I lived in the US, and it has been super fun listening to their weekly podcasts during some of my runs.

I tried a few others, and they were alright.

  1. Meri Kahani Bhawana Somaaya’s interview of Prachi Shah, a famous kathak dancer and cine artiste. I loved knowing all over again, how most great artists start young.
  2. The Lit pickers a podcast produced by Maed in India, writers Supriya Nair and Deepanjana Pal talking about books and having a fun conversation. One of the funnest questions was when they asked each other: which book would you end differently and how? One of the answers were the ending of A Suitable Boy by Vikram Seth.
  3. Business wars -Wondery. I listened to one which was about the cola wars -when Pepsi and Coke were in a race to be the first one to go to space. Yes, Space! A big marketing gimmick that did not quite result in happy outcomes.
  4. Office Ladies. Now, I loved The Office, the American version of the show. The podcast has 2 of the leading ladies talking about the show and their experiences. I couldn’t finish it as I didn’t find it engaging enough.

That is about it -my recent and new experience with podcasts! What is on your list?? Do leave some comments.

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