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Wednesday, December 30, 2009

On the Move

Part of why doing the podcast has suddenly become feasible is that my recording facilities have become mobile. Above is the system I've developed for transport. Below is what things look like once everything is set up.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

And So

The beginning begins. One piece of equipment and one piece of software have been purchased that will make it possible for production on the first episode of Next in the Series: The Podcast to begin. I hope to have the first episode, which is called "The Anniversary Schmaltz," available for download sometime in January.

In honor of that, I will endeavor to make more frequent contributions to this blog so that historians and scholars in the vast, dim future will be able to understand the genesis and development of this epoch-making project. It's been a long road, but I am determined to get these scripts recorded and available. From there, let the Fates do what they must, which is, presumably, to be fateful. The bastards.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

A Small, Correctable Glitch

There will be a small delay in going forward with the first episode, which is called "The Anniversary Schmaltz," because the software that I bought for editing doesn't do as much as I thought it did. Therefore, I will be acquiring Adobe Audition 3 in the next week or two.

The software that I got over the summer will still be useful, it just doesn't have the number of production features that I am going to need if I am going to realize my vision. Or my hearing, I guess, since this is an audio project.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009


I've decided to go ahead with the podcast using the resources available to me, probably beginning in January and continuing at a rate of one episode per month.

As part of the preparation process, I have been cutting down and then building back up an episode called "Let's Revue," which is a collection of songs and short plays. Since I had cut it back, it seemed a bit light in the short play department to me, and last week I had the idea of adapting three short stories I had written in the 1980s.

Adapting the first one, which was called "Seminar," was a piece of cake. I turned the whole thing around in two evenings--and late evenings at that. I still need to take one more pass at it, but it's in pretty good shape as it stands.

The next story I set my sights on was one called "Dreg of the Wildebeest," the story of a Neanderthal who is having a midlife crisis. This will not end up in "Let's Revue," however. As I started to do research on it yesterday, I found this bit of information at the Neanderthal listing on Wikipedia:

Steven Mithen (2006) proposes that the Neanderthals had an elaborate proto-linguistic system of communication which was more musical than modern human language, and which predated the separation of language and music into two separate modes of cognition.

Well, after reading something like that, how could I not realize that "Dreg" needed to be transformed into "Dreg: The Musical"? This is going to become a major project that might even begin life as part of the podcast, but not for some time. there's too much reading to do, too much thinking, too much pondering to find a word that rhymes with "paleolithic."

The third, story, an odd, Kafkaesque piece called "Odyssey," should be simple enough to adapt this coming weekend. I'll report more next week.

Sunday, May 24, 2009

The Death of Caesar

As I've been putting together a new version of Let's Revue, I've decided to revamp a piece--it's really more of a one-act play than a sketch--called "The Death of Caesar" that I wrote years ago for the audio comedy team I was then a part of. The Rule of Three version was good, and it took us to a new level of complexity in recording technique. We had a mix of it that made people almost pee themselves while listening to it that one of my then-partners--a guy who could find small items from the remotest sectors of his life in a matter of moments--managed to lose. The second mix--and both mixes were done by the same fellow--flat out sucked. Since that fellow had profound problems with passive-aggressiveness, one can imagine how accidental I find that sequence of events. And when one member of a team decides that it is good for his ego to sabotage the efforts of the whole, then you have no team at all. It is, in retrospect, no wonder that Rule of Three died.

Which is all ancient history, but was something that I've needed to get off my chest for a while now.

There was one part of the original script that always ate at me, though. Part of the premise was that it was a recording of an old time radio show called The Mercurochrome Theater on the Air Featuring Orson Wellfed, Certified Genius. It was introduced by Orson, and then the playlet was performed. I originally wrote the part of Julius Caesar based on a sketch I had written a dozen years earlier than that in which I imagined Groucho as Caesar. In the Rule of Three version, this was tempered into Caesar as Borscht-Belt comic, a part that I played. And that was fine, except for one thing. I knew, somewhere in the back of my mind, that Caesar should have been played by Orson instead.

This was reinforced when I realized, some years after Rule of Three had died, that the theme of the piece was concerned with the way that envious societies have of tearing down and betraying men of genius. And having Orson portray Caesar would only strengthen this theme.

And so, that is what I am doing. Oddly enough, there's a fair bit of material that I can retain, but I think the work as a whole has improved. Of course, I've been tweaking all of the material, trying to tighten and improve as I go along. That should always be the goal: to produce the best version possible without wallowing in egotism.

Monday, May 18, 2009

A New Approach Deserves a New Look

Since I'm angling to get the show done as a podcast, I have decided to redesign the website. As part of that, I've redone the logo to reflect the notion of it being in support of a podcast. Here's what I came up with:

It's based on the original one, the one that I paid cash money for, and one that I think is wonderful. I just needed it to say the word "podcast."

And now on to the much longer process of redesigning the website.

I've also rewritten almost all of the scripts. I'm in the process of assembling a new version of "Let's Revue" so that it also reflects my interests in storytelling rather than being a collection of so-so sketches. (The sketch "Don't Get Rooked," which makes me laugh, has been retained.) I'm also debating whether the two sections of "The Quality of Marcy" are up to the standards that I hope to maintain.

A discussion with an associate led to us identifying a couple of possible trails for getting some money. There was nothing concrete, but you never know.

Monday, May 04, 2009

No Soap

Once again, I've come acropper the need to raise money. I did not get the grant that I applied for.

On the plus side, I used the opportunity to refine a couple more scripts and to further develop my vision for the project and my approach. Not all bad.

So, I'm going to see if I can't come up with any other ways of raising money, with luck for the entire run of the show. Never give up hope. There always has to be hope.

Friday, March 27, 2009

Step 1 to the Future?

I just dropped off my proposal to do three episodes of what had been Next in the Series: The Radio Show as Next in the Series: The Podcast. An application is not an acceptance, of course, and it is hard to predict what will happen over all.

Still, it could be a start.

I've been listening to comedy shows on BBC Radio 7 recently and am enjoying them quite a bit. Listening to these shows is reaffirming my love for the form. Audio theater might only ever be a hobby for me, but it's one that I love.