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Podcasting, Seriously Newsletter from LWC Studios
Curated and written by Manuela Bedoya and Emma Forbes.

September 16, 2022

Hi friends! Starting on September 23, we will move to a bi-weekly cadence.

Spotlight on Grantee, Tal Minear 

Hi all! Emma here. I’m a Marketing Associate at LWC Studios and occasionally a contributor to this newsletter. I had the chance to sit down with the wonderful Tal Minear, who is a ton of cool things: a voice actor, a sound designer, a newsletter curator, and the producer of fiction podcasts including What Will Be Here?, Someone Dies in this Elevator, and Sidequesting. They are also a grantee of the Podcasting, Seriously Awards Fund. Below, we talk about award applications, the relationship between podcasting and queerness, the controversy at Podcast Movement 2022, and the liberating potential of creating.
This Q&A has been edited and shortened for clarity.
So, you’re a grantee of the Podcasting, Seriously Awards Fund. What’s the impact of initiatives like this for underrepresented creators, and what was your experience with the process?
I feel like The Fund or similar funds give people a leg up so their work can be recognized. They level the playing field for marginalized creators who aren’t given the same opportunities or don’t have the money laying around to just enter things, even though once their shows are entered, they’re brilliant and win awards.
The [Podcasting, Seriously Awards Fund application] process was really smooth, which is something I appreciated. I feel like with a lot of grants, or funds, it’s a very intense process where you have to write essays or something—like a college application. [laughter] I kind of expected to have to do more, so it was a really pleasant surprise when it was just, “Tell us the thing you’re applying to,” “Tell us about your show,” “Tell us how much it costs,” “Send us the receipt.” I was like, Oh wow, this is so easy!
I mostly used it to enter web festivals, because more web festivals are starting to realize fiction podcasts are great. A side effect of this is that there’s many web festivals, each with their own entry fee, so the overall costs can become pretty steep, especially when you’re a single person working on multiple shows. If we had a team and we were submitting shows, I feel like that could be possible, but I am one person, and this year I was submitting 2-3 new audio dramas to web festivals and just straight up didn’t have $200 sitting in my back pocket to throw around. But because of the Fund, I was able to apply, and so far, every single web festival I applied to accepted me.
Congratulations! And you also run a newsletter called Podplane, where you curate podcasts by trans and non-binary creators. Have you been able to cultivate a community through that?
I am slowly cultivating a community.  I’ve been getting new people emailing me their shows and I’ve found shows to listen to personally, which is kind of the secret goal of it all [laughter]. There really is an audience for podcasts by trans and non-binary people, and there are a lot of shows for that audience, and there is this gap of discoverability almost—and I am happy to fill it!
That’s a great segue, because I’m interested in hearing more of your thoughts about the connection between queerness and audio, more specifically audiofiction. I feel like being queer, trans, non-binary, or gender non-conforming fundamentally means imagining new ways of being, and relating, and breaking rules given to us, and I definitely see that as a thread of your shows’ structure and content. Which is a testament to your imagination!
There is so much queerness in audiofiction, because I feel like a lot of queer, trans, non-binary and gender-nonconforming people have found this medium and have found it as a way to get their work out there without some other barrier to publication. Everyone can write their super gay stories and put them out there for an audience hungry for more. And I think having no one able to stop you allows you to dig deep into different aspects of identity to create this whole host of characters and let them interact. You don’t have a gatekeeper to explain yourself to, so you can start with, “Oh, these people are queer,” without anybody saying, “Well why is that?” You can hit the ground running.
So, Podcast Movement 2022… Ben Shapiro shows up, you tweet. I imagine you get trolled into oblivion, there’s a massive debate about “free speech.” How are you feeling about the landscape of podcasting after this?
It feels overdramatic to call it a defining moment, but I feel like for Podcast Movement itself, it is absolutely the time for them to look and be like, “What are our ethics? Where do we draw the line?” It’s a slippery slope, but at the end of the day, having someone there who genuinely believes that queer people have a mental illness, that makes the space not safe for queer people. And anytime someone’s like, “Oh it’s free speech, anybody should be able to say anything,” well there’s free speech and then there’s hate speech. And as an organization, Podcast Movement has the right to prevent hate speech at their events—or, you know, very hateful individuals strolling in without a pass.
I feel like the backlash to my various Tweets kind of proves me right. I was like, “Hey, this man’s presence here doesn’t make me feel safe,” and everyone was like, “Let’s send you death threats!” I can lock my Twitter, I can walk away. Ultimately, it’s fine. But I was a speaker at Podcast Movement, and Shapiro was not, and I do think they owe their speakers a certain amount of safety and they really failed. I think podcasting should be as inclusive as possible, and sometimes that means kicking fascists to the curb. [laughter] But yeah, [the trolling] is all still going on, it’s been weeks, like, get a life!
To end on a better note: in the description of your show, What Will Be Here?, you say the show is “about living and creating when things feel pointless.” I was wondering if you have any more advice on that: living and creating when things feel pointless.
My advice is just do it. I made that whole show as the pandemic started and I felt like I was living in a dystopian novel. Years later, that feeling hasn’t changed. I get so much joy from making things, and I don’t want to stop, so I’m just like, “Yeah, I personally can’t end global warming, but I can write a silly little story that would make some people happy,” and that’s good enough.
It is. I really want to listen to your show Sidequesting, that’s on the queue for this week. I’m excited. Thank you so much for talking!
Thank you and your team for doing a very cool and important thing.

What We're Into 

  • Apple Podcasts has launched "El Vecindario," a celebration of Latine-created content, for Hispanic Heritage Month. The collections are live now until October 15, and will spotlight shows across genres, formats and languages, including LWC originals Latina to LatinaHow to Talk to [Mamí & Papí] about AnythingHow to Talk to [High Achievers] about Anything, and our newest series on Latino entrepreneurship, Scaled: The Latino Business Story.
  • Our friends at #WeAllGrow Latina have launched an online directory for small businesses. The hub was created for Latine business owners to receive support, attract new customers, connect with other entrepreneurs, and browse Latine-created services, products, and more.
  • The Podcasting, Seriously Awards Fund is partnering with this year's Australian Podcast Awards to support entries for BIPOC and LGBTQ+ independent audio creators. Submissions are open until September 27. Apply to the Fund to get reimbursed for entry fees.
  • Organized by AudioUK, the Audio Production Awards recognizes and celebrate outstanding achievement in audio production across a wide range of audio content: podcasts, audiobooks, sound design, radio, presenting; and are open to production talent across the UK. We're proud sponsors of the Grassroots Production Award and have partnered with AudioUK to support entries for BIPOC and LGBTQ+ indie creators. Submissions are open until September 25. Apply to the The Podcasting, Seriously Awards Fund
  • Join us at Podcast Day 24 on October 4 in New York City! Our founder, Juleyka Lantigua, will be delivering a talk on ethics in podcasting. This annual event brings together broadcasters, publishers, platforms, and technology companies in podcasting. Register for one of the three conferences happening in London, New York, and Sydney.

What We're Listening To 

From Us: On the debut episode of Scaled: The Latino Business Story, LWC's newest series spotlighting the growth journeys of Latino/a entrepreneurs, David Favela, founder of Border X Brewing, speaks with Elian and Juleyka about crowd-funding for capital, using data to discover who his customers really are, and going against industry norms that often overlook Latinos and women. 

Podcasting, Seriously at Home 

Podcasting, Seriously at Home
Access our on-demand collection. Easy-to-watch, online webinars featuring in-depth presentations covering a full range of podcasting skills, from launch, production, growth and more.

Our Sponsors 

Clever FMBuilding your podcast community with Clever FM will turn your passive listeners into active fans! Get real feedback, have engaging discussions, repurpose listener-recorded responses for episodes, and more. Get started for free at!
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The Podcasting, Seriously Awards FundGet Refunded for Audio Training and Award Fees!
We're on a mission with AIR, Pacific Content, AcastTriton Digital, and Sounds Profitable to support BIPOC and LGBTQ+ independent audio creators in submitting work to awards and receiving education and training in the U.S., U.K., Canada, and Australia. Applications accepted year-round. Learn more about the Podcasting, Seriously Awards Fund, apply, and support.

Overheard on Podcasting, Seriously Live 

This week we welcomed Elsie Escobar, Director of Community and Content at Libsyn and co-founder of She Podcasts, to talk about the best gear for podcasting on a budget. Some takeaways are:
  • Figuring out what gear you need on a budget starts with asking: Can I use what I have? The minimum necessary equipment you need is a microphone and two headphones. Take inventory of hardware tools that you already have (e.g. laptop and smartphone) and you’ll be surprised what you can make work. Budget for the little things that bring the big things together: chargers, adaptors, dongles, cords. Small connectors are the biggest points of failure and tend to break the quickest.
  • You can develop your own personal taste in gear without having to buy and test a variety of tools. Do your research, find ways to borrow or rent, and go to retailers such as Target, BestBuy, or Guitar Center to do some browsing before buying. Ask yourself, how heavy are things? Will this work with my other equipment? Do I like the way this looks and feels? Don’t be afraid to ask vendors questions such as, “I just got this, I love it, but can you show me how to work it better?”
  • Check out Elsie's Twitter thread for a complete breakdown of the session and more valuable tips!
Podcasting, Seriously on Twitter SpacesJoin the conversation! Stop by Podcasting, Seriously Live every Wednesday at 4pm ET on Twitter Spaces. Learn more about Spaces and follow us at @LWCStudios to join the chat! Check out upcoming sessions.
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Upcoming Workshops 

Elements of an Impactful Short-Form Audio
Saturday, September 17, 2022, 1-2pm ET
In this session, LWC Studios founder Juleyka Lantigua will deconstruct the essential components of highly effective short-form audio, such as trailers, promos, ads, previews, audiograms, etc. She will analyze a selection of such audio pieces that introduce a show with confidence, connect to the listener on an intellectual and emotional level, display a high degree of sound design, and accomplish the essential elements of each type of audio piece. Structure, pacing, "the business" and mold-breaking innovations will be reviewed to help you create the most engaging short-form audio to complement and enhance your podcast.

Creator Spotlight 

Gladys Godinez and Chris CoxHusband and wife duo Chris Cox (he/him) and Gladys Godinez (she/her/ella) are the founders of United by Culture Media. They put their two passions together to start UBCM; Chris' love for multimedia and Gladys' love for social justice. UBCM is a nonprofit that helps in educating the importance of maintaining cultural identity in rural communities through storytelling. Chris hosts The W.I.L.D. Ones podcast where he talks about those that Work In Love Daily. Gladys hosts Courageous Mujer podcast where she embraces, supports and celebrates Latinas in the Heartland.

Click here to learn more about Chris and Gladys and see their work.
Let us know who we should feature next! We highlight creatives working in the podcasting industry and would love to feature you — yes you! Send us an email with your name, headshot, and a short bio to be included in an upcoming edition.

Community Offers 

Cool stuff our podcast friends want to give us! If you have a community offer, please email us.
  • Use promo code "seriously" at checkout to receive $40 (or one month) off on SquadCast.
  • Receive 50% off your first two months on Simplecast by following this link and entering code "ONSIMPLECAST."
  • Use promo code “buzzsprout” for 50% off your Riverside subscription when you sign up for a new account.
  • Get two months free podcast hosting on Acast by following this link and using code "LWC."
  • Subscribe to the Global Podcast Editors newsletter and receive 50% off your first year's subscription. Every issue contains a deep dive into the technical, business, and creative aspects of remote podcast editing for clients, and tips on turning your skills into a side hustle or career.


Elements of an Impactful Short-Form Audio
September 17, 1-2pm ET



Join us every Wednesday at 4pm ET on Twitter Spaces as we get into all things podcasting. Follow us at @LWCStudios to join the chat!
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