Sunday Podcast: The Rocking Self Publishing Podcast

Welcome to Ira's first instalment of the Sunday Podcast. While the name is, in my opinion, sufficiently self explanatory, I'll just give a little overview of what is taking over our (somewhat) regularly scheduled blogging. As I've pointed out previously, I love podcasts. They've nearly replaced music for me, to the point where I actually am way out of touch with the music scene simply because I don't listen to very much of it anymore. Basically the only time I'm listening to music is when I'm writing (like right now, listening to some Rise Against) or when I'm exercising. As much as I would love to, I just can't seem to get into podcasts while I run. I know that, especially when I'm not driving truck for a living anymore, and I've gotten to the point where I can run for a couple hours at a time, running will take up a huge portion of my day that would really help my smash through my never-ending wall of un-listened to podcast episodes. I just went through my Overcast list (which is the best podcast app by the way) and counted 18 episodes left until I am caught up with all my podcasts. Not to mention that unless I listen to all of those today (which is basically not possible since about 8 of them are 4ish hours long each) there will be more coming out. With the amount I listen to I usually have at least one new podcast episode a day. So it really is an insurmountable task. Alright, I ended up going on a bit of a tangent. That will happen from time to time. Hopefully not in the future too much, as I want to pre write these as much as possible and have them scheduled to go up. 

The weekly podcast recommendation/review episode is something I really wanted to do to try and share my love of podcasts and to help some people who might not know where to begin. This week is going to be much more focused on recommendation than review, as I'm throwing it together a bit on a whim. I have had this plan for at least a couple weeks, but I just couldn't wait anymore to start talking about one of my favourite hobbies! In the future I'll be trying to talk a lot more detailed about the things I like and don't like about each podcast, and why you should listen to it. I may be speaking too soon here, I could do that this time as well, but I just want to cover my bases in case I go off on a tangent, which is extremely likely to happen. 

So, without further ado, let's get to this weeks recommendation (even though you've already seen it in the title). The Rocking Self Publishing Podcast. Now, I know this topic might be a bit niche for some people reading my blog, but hopefully someone finds it interesting. Even if you don't plan on writing or self publishing yourself, the stuff they talk about can be pretty interesting from the perspective of just a book reader, or anyone interested in marketing, or even sociology, as it gets into some of the reasons people might buy a certain book over another. 

The Rocking Self Publishing Podcast is set up in a very simple, yet effective way. Each week the creator, Simon Whistler, starts out by saying hello to everyone, introducing the topic of the week, and the author he is interviewing. Sometimes he will give some brief context or background before diving into the interview, but for the most part you get straight into the action. The topics are quite various, but they always relate back to the world of books and writing. Like I said previously though, you don't have to be a writer to enjoy the podcast. For example, if you sell anything, even if that thing is yourself through the form of a blog or social media platform, you'll probably enjoy Episode # 159 – Modern Marketing Techniques with Dave Chesson, because while the subject of marketing is focused on the book side of things, you can easily extrapolate the key points and strategies and tailor them to your own needs. I think Simon is a very talented interviewer and the conversations are always easy to listen to and it helps make the vital information easier to retain when you aren't bored to tears. 

This is one of those podcasts where I won't listen to every single episode. Sometimes the topic at hand just really doesn't interest me, and other times I'll get a few minutes into it and realise that it's a bit similar to something else that I had listened to recently, maybe even something covered by the same podcast. It's to be expected, of course. Once you get over 100 episodes in on such a niche subject, the amount of things you can talk about are going to start to dwindle, so you'll end up having to do a repeat sometimes. While it can be tedious to listen to the same advice over and over, usually the authors are different enough to put their own spin on it and make it interesting again. I think this is a testament to Simon's strengths as an interviewer that he can keep things fresh and find new authors who can give their own, unique views on subjects that have already been covered. 

I'm having a bit of a hard time coming up with some cons for the podcast itself. Most things are small, such as since it's a conversation style podcast sometimes you get small vocal flubs or bits of awkwardness where someone tries to figure out how to form their thoughts into words. I wouldn't even necessarily call that a con though, since that natural feel to it is what draws some people into those sort of podcasts. There are plenty of podcasts out there that do the radio style formatting, many of which I listen to myself, but I think I would call myself a bigger fan of the  "Two Dudes Talking" style of podcast. They are usually a bit longer, which could be a con or a pro, depending on how you look at it, and they usually end up as much easier listening. It's a weird concept, easy listening or easy reading, but I think most people know what I'm talking about when I say that. 

Coming up with my favourite episode was also a bit of a task, but I know that if I put too much thought into it I will end up overthinking things, and this post will never go up. So, I'm going to go with a recent one that I listened to. It's Episode # 158 – Stand-Alone Success with Maggie James. One of reasons I think this one stuck with me is because I've been having a bit of a mental debate recently about whether or not to pursue self publishing. I know that I actually have to write the book first, so I'm not there yet, but it's still a little tick in the back of my mind that pops up from time to time. Something that this episode of the podcast helped me realise though is that it's not necessarily a "this or that" scenario. In episode 158, Maggie James talks about self publishing to Amazon, and having them contact her later on about doing a publishing deal with one of the books she had already self published. They would re-edit it, give it a makeover, print it, and sell and market it for her. That last one, the marketing, is the big one in my eyes. If Amazon says they want to market your book, you know that it's going to sell well, because they really are just an unstoppable powerhouse of resources. This really gave me some comfort in the thought that if I do go with Self Publishing, it's not the end of the world if they don't do very well, because I can always take those already self published books to a publishing company. Or, maybe if I get really lucky, the same thing will happen to me as to Maggie, and Amazon themselves will pick up the book for publishing. 

So I know this first "Sunday Podcast" post was a bit niche, and also somewhat rushed, but I think it did alright. I want to leave you with a rating out of 10 for the Rocking Self Publishing Podcast, as well as some questions. Have you ever heard of this podcast before? Have you listened or will you in the future listen to it? What would you rate it out of 10? Do you listen to any similar podcasts? Leave a comment letting me know your thoughts, and I would love any suggestions for good podcasts. If they are related to the podcast of the week, then that's spectacular, but even if it's totally unrelated I want to hear your suggestions. I'm always on the hunt for interesting new podcasts. So leave your thoughts down below. 

I'm giving the Rocking Self Publishing Podcast an 8 out of 10 possible stars. It's really fun and easy to listen to, and if you are a writer or want to become one, I would consider it essential listening. Give it a shot, and let me know what you think. Thanks for reading!