Some days, however, I'm simply too drained or too unfocused and prefer to just read quietly or better yet, listen to a podcast.
I absolutely love listening to podcasts. Once I find a show I'm interested in with show hosts I enjoy listening to, I will literally download dozens of episodes and listen to them for hours on end. There is nothing I like more than taking a walk or working out while my head is entertained with thoughts of movies, TV shows, books and writing.
Since I decided to take writing seriously and write my first novel, I've found myself searching more and more for writing podcasts and came across a few that have really stood out in terms of the abundance of sheer content, but also of useful advice that they give.
First of all, I started listening to The Creative Writing Career podcast. This podcast talks about writing through all kinds of medium, not only novel writing, and also features writers from all kinds of genres. Fantasy and science fiction seemed to be the predominant genre though and so I listened to those first. The hosts are friendly and ask great questions to the guests they feature. I find it fascinating just listening to the various ways people have become writers and found success. I hadn't realised just how important self-publishing and social media was nowadays in the world of writing until I started listening to this podcast. It also showed me that it's never too late to start novel writing and that there really isn't a defined path to becoming an author.
From there I found two other podcasts that gave me even more information about writing and self-publishing, the Self Publishing Formula podcast and the Science Fiction & Fantasy Marketing podcast. Both of them deal with editing and marketing books and give great advice and tips to new writers. The hosts, who are all self-published authors at various stages of their career, are great to listen to as they share a wealth of information when talking about their experiences, specifically the mistakes they made and learned from over the course of their careers.
I definitely recommend listening to both podcasts even though only the Science Fiction & Fantasy Marketing podcast deals with the genre that I want to write in. Still it's always good to get advice from a broad range of professionals, and Mark Dawson and James Blatch, the hosts of the Self Publishing Formula Podcast, share their experiences of writing and self-publishing from Britain, which appealed to me straight away.
Speaking of British podcasters, I couldn't write this article without mentioning Joanna Penn from the Creative Penn podcast and website. She was a guest on the first episode of the Self Publishing Formula Podcast and was fantastic to listen to so I immediately sought her own podcast out afterwards. It was only then that I realised that she was the same person who had created the amazing website that I often consulted for information about writing and editing, the Creative Penn.
Finally, while listening to The Creative Penn podcast, I came across an episode with special guest Mur Lafferty, who promoted her own podcast I Should Be Writing. Her podcast seemed to focus more on the writing side of things rather than marketing and so I was quick to download it too. She gives lots of insight on writing and editing and features great author interviews too. Her NaNoWriMo Special short episodes have great tricks and advice for all starting writers and really give you all the tools you need to plan and write that first novel.
So if you're out there pondering on how to write your first novel like me and are in need of advice, encouragement or simply enjoy listening to various authors talk about their experiences and success, then I definitely recommend all of the podcasts I mentioned above.
Writing a novel can be a lonely and overwhelming task, so listening to successful authors talking about their own struggles and doubts is comforting and the extra encouragement we need to continue our journey. Podcasts have been an enormous source of comfort and advice for me and I highly recommend giving them a try whether you're out for a walk or on your daily commute to work like me.
I am sure there are plenty more writing podcasts out there that I haven't found yet so feel free to comment below and tell me about some of your favourite writing podcasts.
I'm always excited to hear about new writing podcasts that I might enjoy while riding the ever crowded Tokyo trains. ^_^