Summary – Assignment 4

I really liked this one. I worked in radio for a few years, I have almost 4 months of listening time on Audible (Amazon’s audiobook platform), and frequently (like tonight (Thursday)), instead of watching a Capitals game, I’ll listen to John Walton’s radio call. Now, that’s not to say these are the same as the stuff we addressed in this assignment.

This assignment wasn’t so much about narrating a story in audio (like with audiobooks), but using audio to create a story. I’ll throw in one more anecdote before some more substantial points. I go to a lot of “community theatre” in Richmond. I use the quotes because it’s all really well done, with professional actors or acting students from nearby VCU. One theatre that I love going to, Firehouse Theatre, does a lot of off-the-wall performances along with more traditional plays. A few years ago I went and saw a live performance of the radio performance of War of the Worlds. They had 5 or 6 voice actors sitting on stage and a foley artist off to the side reproducing the sirens and explosions that made the original radio production so convincing.

Alright. I have professed my love for radio – but did I actually do anything during this assignment period? I think so, but I had some trouble. I thought the resources like the Ira Glass videos, which I talk about here, were excruciatingly helpful; but, I struggled to identify the concepts when I listened to something like Moon Graffiti or This American Life. I could pick up on the use of background music and sound effects and tonality and all that, but I felt like a lot of my judgement was based on instinct, which I think is valid, but its definitely not critical analysis. I think a big reason for this is that the reference material isn’t in my wheelhouse.

I love a good list. In Assignment 3 there were bullet points I could point at and say “hey, its this one.” But when concepts delivered in something other than writing (ie. a video), they become so much more difficult to reference. I took notes, and I think I did the assignments to the best of my ability, but I don’t think I ever truly grasped this one. Idk.

As far as social context….I could talk for hours. Even if I had all three days of the assignment period, I don’t have enough time to streamline my thoughts, so I’ll say one: when it comes to storytelling, philosophy and methodology are great, but at the end of the day, the listener knows what’s compelling to them (I talk about this in the Ira/Jad reflection). Ultimately, it doesn’t matter who’s talking, what they’re saying, or how they say it, if it’s compelling, it’s compelling.

This assignment period I also made a special attempt to look at other peoples’ blogs. A sorta gripe I’ve got is finding the material – a lot of homepages don’t have the most recent blog posts, so I can’t peruse them to find the one I think my comments would most contribute to; I have to go on a blog and say “alright, I’m going to comment on a daily create,” which feels like I’m just going through the motions. Idk, I may just be neurotic. I have found it extremely helpful when people link back to their blogs in their tweets. That’s brilliant.

As far as content of other peoples’, I’m continually in awe of Digital Leviathan – the way he was able to come up with a cogent story so quickly, and every assignment/daily create I’ve seen from there ties into it. I’ve also received some awesome feedback on my blog, all screenshots below the link dump.

Link Dump

Twitter (I had been saying when I included a link to my blog, but it’s pretty much all the time at this point):
  • Sowwwy flickr

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