I think about this question all the time, mostly because I am allergic to the sound of people reading. And that’s what you usually get when you turn on the radio.
This matters to me so much that I spent a lot of time—a crazy amount of time—trying to get The Next Big Thing contributors to sound like themselves. To that end I developed what came to be known as the Method (h/t Lee Strasberg).
I’m grateful I had a chance to demonstrate the Method in front of a live audience this past October at the Third Coast International Audio Festival, which celebrated its tenth anniversary this year.
The panel was called The Script Disappears (audio here). Jane Feltes (of This American Life) and I demonstrated contrasting ways to coach reporters in the delivery of their scripts. Conference-goers watched and listened as we worked with our brave subjects.
The message I got from participants is that there is a deep hunger in the public radio system for more of this kind of thing. So much so that I am in the process of turning The End of the Dial into a training tool, to cover that topic and others as the need arises. Stay tuned.