Thursday, May 08, 2008

How Much Can I Chew?

Ever have a brilliant idea that turned out to be more than you bargained for?

A friend and I had talked about submitting pieces to a local public radio station. Faithful readers may recall that I'd entered the Public Radio Talent Quest and made it to the Top 100 People's Choice out of more than 1400 entries. I've been a classical radio announcer and a news anchor at my high school and college stations.

Said friend loaned me a broadcast quality digital recorder and showed me the basics of use. Because I hadn't yet come up with a brilliant story idea, I decided to try the complex recorder out at my Romance Writers of America chapter's writing conference by interviewing a few authors and creating podcasts for their Web sites and mine.

Why interview one author when you can interview 17? In the midst of conference events on Saturday, I corralled 17 multi-pulished authors--including our keynote speaker Debbie Macomber, who has sold more than 60 million books!!! I talked with each about a different aspect of the writing life. Everyone was excited to participate. One author even contacted her publisher's publicist--who wants to post it and another Avon author's on the Avon site!

Except I didn't yet have a product, just digital files. I, the untechie, had to get the interviews off the recorder and into my computer. The manual made my eyes glaze over. I was afraid I'd lose the files or convert them to some format my computer wouldn't read. Fortunately, my friend helped...that part was easier than I thought. Then I had to edit each interview with Audacity software, add music (which I created myself via another program) and add an intro/outro...a lengthy process.

I'm calling the series Authors Tell All. The first, with author Jenna Petersen who also writes as Jess Michaels, will be posted on my site under Features soon.

I hope to do more in the future. But this time around, I'll be charging for my time and talent!


Eileen said...

Very cool!

Kelli Estes said...

Ruth, this is awesome! I can't wait to hear them!