in praise of podcasts old and new

I’m not into the Secret, but this week the universe did oddly offer up something I’d been wishing for. I was recently talking to Chris about one of our favorite (and first) podcasts, Filmspotting, which just celebrated its 300th show with an amazing episode highlighting the top movies of the decade. I even thought of linking to it here because, off-the-cuff and on, it boasts some truly great writing. But those decade picks from hosts Adam Kempenaar, Matty Robinson and original host Sam Van Hallgren expose my one quibble with the show: It’s so very male. While the guys are more sensitive than most (Sam famously railed about misogyny in Sin City) the podcast invariably skews toward reviewing and championing the likes of Tarantino and Scorsese, both of which tend to offend my delicate sensibilities.

My martini-induced rant to Chris on the subject was not a criticism of Filmspotting as much as a lament that there’s not something similar but more chick-flick friendly out there — especially as there’s nothing I love more than high-brow criticism of “low” culture. (See my second favorite podcast, the Slate Culture Gabfest.) Then today, I visited the blog of my favorite author, Jennifer Crusie, to find that she’s launching a weekly podcast with another great writer, Lani Diane Rich. The subject? Romantic comedy. Let me count the ways this rocks my world.

1. Lani and Jenny both have excellent blogs, Argh Ink and Lucy, where they talk about writing and romance and movies and dogs — so many of my favorite things.

2. Lani also does a great podcast on writing and wine — again, good stuff — and teaches an outstanding series of webinars on fiction writing. (I’ve taken one of the classes already and will start the next soon.)

3. I’ve lost count of how many times I’ve read Jenny’s romantic comedies, and I never get tired of them. They, above all else, make me want to be a novelist.

Since taking Lani’s class this winter, I watch movies and read books a lot differently, thinking more about story and structure and why certain things work and others don’t. I’m excited about the prospect of watching and dissecting classic romantic comedies with two writers who have an unabashed appreciation for the genre. Will I see any of you over at the Popcorn Dialogues? And what kinds of podcasts do you wish existed? I’ve been trying to talk Chris into doing one with me for ages …


One response to “in praise of podcasts old and new

  1. Pingback: top 20 favorite films of the decade « Get edited.

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