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Getting Started Telling Stories in Sound

We had a fantastic time meeting with aspiring radio producers at our inaugural workshop last night! This 2-hour workshop was designed to walk participants through the process of putting together a short audio documentary – from planning to production. Below you’ll find links to download the handouts from the workshop, and some of the resources we mentioned.

If you missed the workshop but you’re interested in making audio stories, the Canadian Sound & Story Workshop Facebook group is a great place to start.

Handouts

Other CSSW Resources

Software

Our favourite editing software is Hindenburg Journalist, available for just $99 – and there’s even a 30-day free trial. Here’s an excellent collection of video tutorials to get you started with it. We also mentioned Audacity, which is free but not very user friendly. It can be handy for adding effects that Hindenburg doesn’t do though. For Mac users, GarageBand can be a good place to start if you already own it, but if you don’t, we think Hindenburg is a better use of your money.

Examples

We played a variety of clips at the workshop to illustrate storytelling techniques or simply because we love them.

Distribution

Ok, you’ve created a radio piece you’re proud of – how can you help people find it and hear it?

SoundCloud is a great first stop. SoundCloud allows you to upload your audio for free and provides a number of great sharing options including embedable widgets for your website. You can even podcast using SoundCloud, and get your work into iTunes.

Another great DIY distribution¬†channel¬†is the Public Radio Exchange. PRX enables anyone to upload their audio and make it available to radio stations around the world. They don’t really make it worth your while financially, but PRX can be a great way to bootstrap your radio career and get some broadcast credits under your belt.

Finally, of course, there’s the good old CBC. CBC has a handy pitch guide if you’re interested in pitching a show or series of segments on an existing show. You can also pitch one-off stories to individual shows (an easier route when you’re starting out). To do that, simply email the show with a brief description of your idea and a little about your audio and/or journalism experience.

Further Learning

Aspiring Canadian audio storytellers should definitely join our Facebook group and/or sign up for email updates to connect with other audio producers and hear about upcoming learning opportunities. We’ve also learned a lot from these sites:

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