A writer by the name of Jake Bible, someone I listen to and read regularly, someone who’s work I liked enough to buy a story from for the my anthology Walk the Fire, just blogged honestly and eloquently how he finally, with a heavy heart, will no longer podcast his fiction. It’s worth a read.
Podcasting has changed a lot in the last five or seven years. It was once a bright new thing, an innovative road to discovery for indie writers. It was a free way to stay sane on long commutes. It became an iTunes darling, for a time. Podcasting is still here, but it no longer has the cache of being new and innovative. That title was passed on to ebooks.
As you likely have figured out, if you made your way to this blog, I’ve been giving my fiction away for four years. Ten or eleven titles out now, six more in pre-production, more in the brain-cave percolating. I love podcasting almost as much as I love writing. I’m making a day job out of narrating for audible titles as well (stay-at-home-dad wages right now, but the future looks promising), on skills honed from years of podcasting.
But I’d be lying if I didn’t tell you there are days I wake up and think… it’s time to walk away.
Seth Harwood received an MFA in fiction from the Iowa Writers’ Workshop and went on to build a large fan base for his first novel, Jack Wakes Up (Random House), by first serializing it as a free audiobook. Across iTunes, Podiobooks.com, and sethharwood.com, his work has been downloaded over one million times. His methods have been covered by The Boston Globe and San Francisco Chronicle. His second novel, Young Junius, and a novella Triad Death Match are available now.
Podcast fiction is not a career, it’s something you do for the love of it. Sure, it’s a good way to build a name, and build people interested in your stuff, make a ‘platform’… but only if you love it. Or it’ll fail. And hurt.
I am a writer. I’m also a communicator and a net culture guy, so podcasting is a no-brainer for me, right? Well, scratch that, it actually was-and is-a bit of thought, and a heckuva lot of work.
Don’t get me wrong, I love it, but when Phil Rossi recently admitted in his blog that after losing his job, he’s thinking about turning off the podcasting mic, it resonated. Made me sad. Rung my bell.