BY CINDY GAO
This is an excerpt from the June 8 Chinese Storytellers newsletter featuring podcast hosts of Chinese descent sharing tips on podcasting and audio storytelling.
The “NüVoices” podcast features badass women and non-binary creatives whose work and lives are connected to China. The show highlights their diverse professional contributions as well as their rich inner lives related to identity and (mis/under) representation. Our job as hosts is to give structure to the conversation by setting the stage for the audience to get to know our guests and their passions. Our preparations vary; my personal process is to have an informal chat with the interviewee and then read, listen and watch as much of their work as I can. This helps me understand what previously unasked questions would solicit the most insightful and nuanced responses.
The mechanics of starting our podcast wasn’t hard: we had the equipment, experienced journalists and writers as hosts and an endless list of interesting guests. What was hard was the time commitment required to produce an episode, build an audience and do it consistently, week in and week out. There is no secret to podcasting but to do it again and again and again, build confidence through fluency and work with a really good editor. The storytelling process in audio, as in other formats, is about how you can best facilitate the connection between the story, your subjects and the audience; the rest is confetti.
Photo caption: “NüVoices” co-hosts Cindy Gao and Chenni Xu pose with guest Xin Wang during a recording session. (Courtesy of Cindy Gao)