Writing and Fiction Podcasts I’m Loving in 2015

These days I prefer listening to my reading, as opposed to absorbing books, news, and articles with my eyes.

I discovered this while pursuing my initiative to sit less and move more. We’ve probably all heard by now that sitting all day is terrible for us, and as writers we tend to sit plenty! To fight this, I now load up my iPod with audio files and head out for a productive ramble.

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On these Writing Walkabouts, I actually do more than just listen to stuff. I do a fair portion of my writing by dictation while on walks or pacing around at home. If you are interested in how I learned to create this way, check out my guide here (old version: new book version available June 24, 2015).

The Productive Authors Guide to Dictation Full Cover E

As for listening, I consume fiction audiobooks as well as podcasts. The latter are mostly about industry news and writing craft information but I do subscribe to a couple short story fiction channels as well.

So here’s my list of podcasts I’m enjoying in 2015!

1. Adventures in SciFi Publishing

An awesome compendium of industry news and resources for speculative fictionists, including a wonderful guest lineup. Recently, the focus has switched to digital publishing (as opposed to traditional or physical books).

2. The New Disruptors

This one is still on my list for 2015 even though production is on hiatus because I’m still catching up on the archives. From their site: “The New Disruptors tells stories that provide practical inspiration about the way that creative people and producers connect with audiences to perform, cajole, convince, sell, and interact using new methods.”

3. Rocking Self Publishing

From their site: “Interviews with Top Self-Publishers, Every Thursday.”

4. The Creative Penn Podcast

Another option featuring tons of amazing guests, these episodes by Joanna Penn are always interesting and worth a listen.

5. Writing Excuses

This podcast’s episodes are awesome and described by the tagline: “Fifteen minutes long, because you’re in a hurry, and we’re not that smart.” Run by Mary Robinette Kowal, Brandon Sanderson, Howard Taylor, Dan Wells, the episodes feature special guests, a writing prompt, and an audiobook pick of the week.

6. Helping Writers Become Authors

Run by K.M. Weiland, this podcast covers the craft as well as writing lifestyle topics. Weiland is fun to listen to and gives plenty of illustrative examples.

7. TEDTalks Art

This spans more than just writing but I find most episodes very relevant.

8. On Being with Krist Tippett

This award-winning podcast is definitely a topical hodgepodge but somehow its episodes always apply to my projects, and my life! Definitely addictive.

9. Clarkesworld Magazine

I love the fact that this podcast features all of the magazine’s short speculative fiction in audio form, especially since my local library has denied my request to shelve the print copies. A new episode comes out on the 1st, 7th, 14th, 21st and 28th of the month.

10. Lightspeed Magazine Podcast

Similarly, this podcast offers audio versions of some of the fantasy and science fiction short stories featured in the magazine.

11. WIRED’s Geek’s Guide to the Galaxy 

This podcast covers reviews and interviews about works of science fiction, including books, film, and other mediums.

12. Umano 

Not a podcast, but if you haven’t tried this audio news app or something else like it, you should! With Umano, professional actors read me my writing news. It’s awesome! The free version lets me subscribe to certain topic channels for a limited number of articles per day. Users do have to pay for unlimited article access.

Be sure to chime in with your favorites by leaving a comment below. These ears always need new ideas and recommendations!

My Panelist Schedule for Comic Con 2015 #FanX15 in SLC

Comic Con FanX 2015

I am super excited to be a panelist at next week’s Comic Con 2015: Fan Experience in Salt Lake City, Utah. The last couple have been an absolute blast! 

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For all you writers, my book about how to save your poor wrists while amplifying your hourly word count came out a month ago: HOW TO DICTATE YOUR WRITING LIKE IT’S…2015. The first book in my middle grade series HULDUSNOOPS is also available, for those of you needing some Icelandic fantasy / sci fi in your lives (this should be all of you).

13 Advantages to Dictating Your Writing and What a Writing Walkabout Looks Like

Here is my panelist schedule, though you can also search for my name on the main event site or download the app. Please come up and say hi!

Friday January 30, 2015

2:00 pm: Writing and Health, Ballroom C

8:00 pm: Equality in Speculative Fiction, Ballroom C

I love going to Cons. The energy you get from being around that much nerdiness and creativity is palpable. And in the words of Stan Lee:

Comic Con Stan Lee Quote

So. Whether you are local or need to make the trip, it sounds like this is where you should be next weekend!!

But if you can’t make it, I’ll be posting about epic costumes and miscellany on Instagram which feeds to the right on this blog. 

Two Blogs Diverged…

This past week I’ve done a makeover on how I blog. I’ve been like Robert Frost’s traveler in the woods facing two diverging roads, only I’ve been trying to stradle both until I think I pulled something! So then it came to me. Frost said he couldn’t travel both and be one traveler, but he wasn’t dealing with cyberspace. I can be more than one traveler here.

So I’m duplicating myself by splitting my blog into two.

  • Here, on CindyGrigg.com I’m going to stick to my fiction writing life and adventures to include: research, inspiration, travels, and random musings. I’d like this blog to be more personal and conversational.
  • The Productive Author will be where I focus on my non-fiction writing including writing productivity and my new book series HOW TO WRITE LIKE IT’S… about how modern apps, software, tools, and tech in general can be levers, and ones that too many writers shy away from.

The Productive Author Logo

After all, it’s almost 2015! There are tools to make writing easier. For example, check out my Writing App of the Week.

I just finally clued in that these may be two very different types of communities, so while there is obviously some cross-over between the two, this way I can keep my posts a bit shorter. I’ve been waxing verbose trying to cover both in one place.

Just wanted to ‘splain!

Oh, and happy #NaNoWriMo to all those who are doing it! I am and I’ve reached 12,000 of the 50,000. And yes, I dictated mine–8,000 words on Saturday. I’m telling you, there are reasons to learn dictation… So worth it. Happy writing this week!

13 Advantages to Dictating Your Writing

I began looking into dictation for several reasons. Like many people, I have experienced back problems which make it hard to sit at a computer and write all day. I’ve also had trouble keeping weight off since becoming a full-time writer. There, said it!

I’ve moved this to TheProductiveAuthor.com, so please click here to read the rest!

 

Free Novel or Series Outline Template Inspired by J.K. Rowling

I just participated on a Salt Lake Comic Con Writers Retreat panel called Planning and Outlining Your Novel and Finding Time to Write. Here’s an outlining tool that has worked awesomely for me, probably because I created it so it’s all about how my brain works. Who knows, it might be your thing, too. Worth a try!

I created this worksheet after I was inspired by J.K. Rowling’s handwritten diagram for Harry Potter.

Here’s a preview before you download:

Screenshot of Series Plot Template by Cindy Grigg

My experience is that outlining is most useful if it’s fluid, allowing you to still create as you write the actual novel. To me, that spells ‘spreadsheet’ not ‘word processor’, because it’s so simple to add things in, take things out, and move them around. Plus this spreadsheet is more visual for me. I have used this to plot out my two speculative fiction series: HULDUSNOOPS and THE SALT SHEEN PARADOX.

DOWNLOAD BY CLICKING HERE:

 Free Novel or Series Outline Template by Cindy Grigg

Note: Instructions are included on the white tab near the bottom center of the spreadsheet.

Most writers have access to a spreadsheet. No specialty software required. This should work for Excel, Calc (OpenOffice and LibreOffice, etc) and others but let me know if it doesn’t open for you.

Hope you find it useful. If you do, please consider:

Thanks!