Reading James’s post on his preparations for his podcast got me thinking about preparations I make (or more correctly, sometimes make) for our little recording sessions each Sunday morning (UK time). So I thought a bit of a look at the way I try and do things might be interesting.
I am in a similar position to James in terms of time available to me to do justice to our shows. My three kids keep me quite busy, and the wife also occasionally for some bizarre reason wants to see me. She is strange like that.
So by weeks end, I suddenly see that the time left to me has diminished to nothing.
So what usually happens, and is certainly the case with the current recordings for the Troughton retrospective, Sunday is partially devoted to a research day. That is, when I can fit it around holidays, kids football (real pointy-ball stuff, not that other silly choreographed dance with a round ball) and other things going on that invariably fill up a weekend.
I worship at the altar of the multi-tabbed browser. I spend time finding interesting titbits from a variety of sources, and lay them out in tab, after tab, after tab in my browser. I can then dive into a particular tab if I see the recording is going down one particular path. Sometimes I feel guilty about relying on that, but then I think it is no different to having a pile of books beside me, with little bookmarks strategically placed at important information.
You have probably heard me talk about them before on the show, but if you haven’t already got them, get the About Time books from Mad Norwegian Press. They, in my opinion, are the single most important reference tool for the classic series that you can have at your disposal.
At the moment I am in the process of reading two very good novels starring the second Doctor. I am hoping to have them finished by mid next week so I can record a segment for the last of the Troughton retrospective episodes. Now I am not the fastest reader in the world and my retention is probably marginally worse. Also sometimes I make poor choices and end up slogging through stuff I wouldn’t ordinary go anywhere near. I don’t think I could never be a professional tv or film reviewer – my brain would probably reach down and throttle me if I had to go through half the stuff that ends up on our screens.
So I hope doing this sort of thing never becomes a slog, something I dread. Not because I don’t enjoy it, I do. But more that I feel if I don’t put in enough time and effort to make what comes out of my mouth sound interesting, accurate and informed, I have failed. The podcast is very important to me, in so many ways.
I am so lucky I have two such talented, eloquent and knowledgeable presenters on the DWP with me. They make me look good.