Hey, Goddard Creative Writers past and present! As we announced here, the Goddard MFAW is doing a soft launch of our new Podcast School and it is open to all students and alumni of the MFA in Creative Writing. The new initiative begins with four workshops (two technical, two creative) to get you introduced, oriented, informed, and starting to practice putting together your own podcasts.

Our guest instructors in this new venture are James T. Green from Gimlet Creative and Jackie Batten, Training and Academic Program Coordinator for WGDR Radio, Goddard’s college and community radio. James and Jackie will be working together to help you walk away with a short sample segment of audio storytelling by the end of our residency. Or, if you just want to see what it’s all about, you are welcome to attend any of the workshops, even if you are jumping into the middle.

All Goddard MFAW students in Vermont and participants at this summer’s Clockhouse Writers Conference and Retreat are already set to attend – no extra fees. Port Townsend MFAW student? We’ll be coming your way in July with voxpop interviews and plans to bring the curriculum to Port Townsend in future residencies. Are you an MFAW alum from either residency program who hasn’t signed up for the CWC conference but wants to attend? Get in touch! No experience necessary! There is no advance homework, and nothing to prepare.

Here’s more about WGDR, Jackie Batten and Jackie’s workshops:

WGDR Radio: As a forum for cultivating social justice, stewardship of the natural world, and the independent arts, Goddard College Radio fosters local and global community building and resilience through the broadcast of information, audio arts, and moderated dialogue.

Goddard College Radio is a hybrid college-community radio station and living laboratory for knowledge production in the 21st century. Community volunteers, staff, faculty, and students work together to serve listeners and learners through high quality programming and online content, informed by Goddard College’s values and the ethical guidelines of non-commercial, educational community radio.

Jackie Batten joined the WGDR, Goddard College Community Radio team as the Training and Academic Program Coordinator in 2012. The highlight of her work with WGDR was managing Indie Kingdom, WGDR’s Youth Radio Training Program. As the manager of this program, she collaborated and co-taught with classroom teachers from area schools to train and empower students over the course of a semester – or full academic year – to document, produce, and share personal and community stories. This program won three competitive Innovations and Collaborations grants from the Vermont Community Foundation in 2014, 2015 and 2016 In addition to her work with WGDR, Jackie works as a middle and high school counselor in Central Vermont. Jackie’s love for, and belief in, the power of story – as influenced and evidenced by her audio documentary teaching experience – contributes to how she builds meaningful and productive relationships with students. She focuses on a holistic, developmental, and student-centered approach to school counseling which she developed in her six years of work as a community educator. Jackie earned her B.A. in American Studies and Economics from Smith College and a M.Ed. in School Counseling from Goddard College.

Jackie’s Podcast School workshops:

Monday, July 1st: Do You Have Audacity? and Other Essential Audio Editing Questions: Interested in podcasting and audio storytelling?  Let’s get technical! We’ll start with Audacity: powerful audio editing software that is free and open source. (It works on Macintosh, Windows, and Linux machines.) This workshop will give you an overview of the technical requirements for podcasting (surprisingly easy and free so don’t be put off!), teach you the basics of how to edit recordings in Audacity and point you in the direction of how to learn more. (If you can, bring a laptop and download audacity before you come: https://www.audacityteam.org/)

Thursday, July 4th: The “Audio” in Audio Storytelling: Interviews, Music, and Sound Design: Telling a story for listeners is different than telling a story for readers. The language used is different, tone is important, and music and other sounds can enhance the story. Participants will learn the basics of interviewing and making a radio piece out of interviews, as well as how to incorporate music and other elements of sound design to make a fleshed-out audio piece. For those who have taken all four podcasting workshops, the plan for the day is to have a rough cut of a short piece finished by the end of this workshop.  (If you have audio recording equipment (even on your phone!), bring it.  WGDR will have ten field kits for recording available to participants to use.)

For more information, check your MFAW residency schedule, your CWC Conference and Retreat Schedule, or contact us!

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Rahna Reiko Rizzuto is the author of Shadow Child, a suspenseful literary historical novel published in 2018. Her first novel, Why She Left Us, won an American Book Award, and her memoir, Hiroshima in the Morning, was a National Book Critics Circle Finalist, an Asian American Literary Award Finalist, a Dayton Literary Peace Prize Nominee, and the winner of the Grub Street National Book Award. She is also a recipient of the U.S./Japan Creative Artist Fellowship, funded by the National Endowment for the Arts. She was Associate Editor of The NuyorAsian Anthology: Asian American Writings About New York City and is a Hedgebrook alumna. Reiko has been interviewed widely on motherhood including on The Today Show, 20/20, and The View. Her articles on motherhood, Hiroshima, the Japanese internment camps and radiation poisoning have been published globally, including in the L.A. Times, Guardian UK, CNN Opinion and Salon, and through the Progressive Media Project. She is a faculty member at Goddard College in the MFA in Creative Writing program, and is the advisor of the national literary journal, Clockhouse. Reiko is Japanese/Caucasian and was raised in Hawaii. She is the founder of the writing retreat Pele's Fire on the Big Island of Hawaii.

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