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Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Progress Report - In Studio & Broadcast 7

The last time I was in a decent home studio I was laying down drum tracks for a speed metal tune. I won't tell you exactly how long ago that was, but I will say it was more than a decade and less than a half century.

Here's the truth about writers - a lot of us have to find other things to do, otherwise we'll go dry and get all distressed about not having any fresh ideas. That's not a happy place.

Speaking of happy places, I've found one in a new rented home that I'm just finishing moving to. I've been working on writing on most days, and when I'm not writing / editing / scribbling on my white board, I've spent time getting situated.

One project I hoped to get going is the media studio, and I finally have the space for it. With the help of a good friend, I've been able to put some old technology to use and build a studio on the cheap. Some of the equipment was donated from my Father, a highly talented Blues Man (small, but good quality sound board, and one of our Samson C01 Mics), and many of the fixtures were affordable thanks to a huge sale at our local Staples / Business Depot store.

Meanwhile, that good friend I mentioned (he goes by The FirstOne Crewcast on Facebook). has been busy gathering info from the readers and putting together some of the meat of the show. I take care of a lot of the technical aspects while he does some important topic planning. Considering he's read the books at least eight times and is great at putting facts in order, that makes him a pretty good fit for this sort of thing. He's also helping with some research for Broadcast 7.

The above picture shows a small part of the studio, it's about 70% complete. The important parts are done, and it doesn't sound too bad, so we're going ahead with the first podcasts this week when I'm not editing, researching or writing. We've already done a lot of learning on that front, as evidenced by a post I put up on Facebook earlier this evening:


More research went into Broadcast 6 today, got a little more of Broadcast 7 finished today, The FirstOne Crewcast and I got our feet wet, doing a little podcast recording.

We got some important mistakes out of the way:

1) Had a pre-podcast discussion that would have been perfect for the live discussion.

2) Finally figured out how to mount a pop filter on the mics, which are hanging from mounts that are NOT compatible. We cheated without using duct tape. It took a while. We should have just used duct tape.

3) Did a whole 15 minute segment (huge, considering it's a half hour show), before I realized the system was ready to record, but we didn't actually click the big red button to record what we were saying. It's no biggie, I completely screwed up the intro and forgot what I was going to say at one point.

4) Got the first 'deer in headlights' + 'nothing but crickets' response from Ray aka FirstOne after asking him a question. It was actually pretty hilarious.

We'll get it tomorrow, I'm sure. Tons of fun so far.

Now, back to work!

--- END ---

Pictured right: The entrance to the studio, which we're seriously thinking of calling 'The Bunker.' It's a little dark, and that first step is a doozy.

Before I end this post and get back to work, I have to thank a few people who made a real impression on me when they worked on one of the longest running podcasts I've ever seen. Geoff, Jay, Ross and Mickey. I'll never forget Somacow, and you guys need to poke me if you ever start anything new. I'd also like to say hello to the Sound The Alarm Podcast, everyone on the Facebook Page, Twitter, Glenn (my fellow Canadian), Sylvie (who worked on other things in the background), Kevin Smith (who didn't assist directly, but had a lot to do with this anyway), as well as to all the musicians who have given us permission to use your tunes for the end of each episode.

We're taking questions for the Crewcast Internet Radio Show regarding Spinward Fringe and anything else you'd like me to try and answer, so type something in below.

Now, back to work on getting Broadcast 7 out there for August 14!


[You'll be able to find Crewcast Internet Radio episodes on this blog once they start coming out.]


Tracy from Northern Ireland said...

Can't wait for the podcasts to start to see what questions us crew nuts come up with, especially when I read some of the posts on facebook. I think they wil be so much fun and as the podcast start to roll you will be swamped with more questions about all you books, Including Dark Rising and Sons of Brightwell Series

TwistedSciFi said...

Great news about the podcast! Can't wait-please tell me that you're planning to post these to iTunes. I listen to all of my podcasts while driving in my car. All I have to do is plug in my iPod. Hope you'll consider investigating this if it wasn't already on the radar. I think it will help to grow your listening audience as well. Thanks much!

Mike F. said...

Though somewhat irrelevant to the blog topic, I needed somewhere to say this. I just finished Spinward Fringe: Broadcast 0, and it was an exceptional book. The characterization, the plot, all of it came together beautifully and I will be working my way through the rest of the books in the series. Thank you for an exciting journey, and I look forward to continuing it.

Garret DuPont said...

Can't wait for the broadcast. I've been out of the loop for awhile. Keep up the great work!

Jason Browning said...

I really wish you lived close to San Francisco. I audio engineer and I love the Spinward Fringe series. It would be a lot of fun to help you out with the podcasts. Stay inspired and keep up the good work.