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Is Pre-Production the Secret to a Successful Podcast?

Is Pre-Production the Secret to a Successful Podcast?

Discover the power of pre-production in creating a compelling and engaging podcast. Learn why planning ahead is crucial for delivering value to your audience.

Let’s continue our conversation from the past couple of blog posts regarding preparing for your podcast. So after you’ve defined your purpose, the “why” for doing your podcast, and the target audience, the next important step in creating a successful podcast is planning and pre-production.

Now, this phase really involves carefully mapping out each one of your episodes and your content strategy, so that you have everything in place before you hit the record button.

So why is it important to plan ahead? Because you then avoid winging it.

Providing Value

I gotta imagine that in creating your podcast, you are desiring to provide value to your listeners. Well, at least you should be. And if that’s true, the best way to do that is to prepare going into it.

I was listening to someone on social media today talk about why they appreciate audiobooks more than they do podcasts. And I think it’s because so many podcasts have people simply winging it. And he’d prefer people’s best thoughts to their first thoughts.

So, put your best thoughts into each and every episode by planning ahead.

Episode Planning

Have a roadmap for where you’re going with the first few episodes. Plan out the direction. Don’t just create one episode and go one at a time. Maybe that’s where you might head later on. But to start, have an idea of where you want to go for the next few episodes.

Now, what about each episode’s outline? Create an outline. It’s probably not best to fully script every episode. But have an outline that has main points and topics to cover. Maybe it has some questions that you want to use with your potential guest for the episode. Or if it’s Bible-based, you might have scripture references or different quotes that you might use. And it keeps you focused and organized during your recording.

Season Planning

Now let’s pan out a little bit. What about planning out the season? First of all, is your podcast going to be one that is seasonal? That’s often a great recommendation to give people breaks after long stretches of episodes.

Structure the content in each season, maybe into a theme. It allows for these spaces for people to take a breath, to take a pause. It allows you to reevaluate what it is that you’re doing so that way the next season is better than the season before. And it also builds anticipation for that next season. Just like your favorite shows do.

Benefits of Pre-Production

  • Helps your recording process to be really smooth
  • Ensures consistent and coherent messaging
  • Keeps listeners engaged
  • Provides a solid foundation for success

For anything in life, even as a creative, preparation is key. Don’t underestimate the value of planning ahead.

Pre-production sets you up for a great podcast, and that attention to detail will truly pay off. Tomorrow, we’re going to continue our conversation on podcasting as we get into some production tips. Until then, keep creating for God’s glory. Be blessed and be a blessing.

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How Can Joy Fuel Your Creativity?

How Can Joy Fuel Your Creativity?

As creatives, what we create originates from the depths of our hearts. Even God’s Word reminds us that our mouths speak from the overflow of our hearts.

When we examine the best works of our hands, we often find that the most beautiful creations flow not from a place of stress or anxiety, but from a heart brimming with joy and hope. This joy, particularly when grounded in an abiding relationship with God, provides a sense of fulfillment and purpose that truly fuels the creative passions we are called to pursue. While art should undoubtedly express the full range of our emotions, art that consistently lacks joy and hope can suffer creatively, becoming darker and less inspiring.

Nehemiah 8:10 reminds us that in our challenges and battles, the joy of the Lord is our strength.

For the Christ-centered creative, the joy we find in Jesus not only uplifts our spirits but also fortifies us, providing the strength and resilience needed to pursue our God-given creative passions. When our hearts are truly aligned with God and His joy, we find ourselves more open, free, generous, and willing to take creative risks as we build and create.

The Christian understands that joy is not merely an emotional state but an abiding truth born from the fruit oof the Spirit within us. As Leonardo da Vinci said, “Where the Spirit does not work with the hand, there is no art.” Our joy and inspiration in the creative process rely on the Spirit of God living within us. Without the joy that comes from God’s Spirit, our creativity will ultimately lack vitality and depth, diminishing its desired impact.

When we create from a place of joy, our work not only uplifts and inspires others but becomes contagious, spreading positivity like a viral infection that transforms ordinary work into something extraordinary, as the Spirit of God inhabits it. However, when our hope diminishes and our joy wanes, our creative output mirrors that reality.

Albert Einstein recognized the playful nature that results from joy, stating, “Creativity is intelligence having fun.” It’s in that playful spirit that we not only create smiles but also experience genuine joy in our hearts. Conversely, when that playful Spirit is absent, our creative endeavors can feel more like a burdensome process than a delight.

Therefore, let us stay connected and devoted to the Father, recognizing Him as the source of our joy. Let us remain in community with others who will encourage and support us. Such community is what the Orderd Chaos Club, when launched, will hopefully be. I would even recommend practicing gratitude, for training our hearts to be grateful helps us maintain a hopeful and joyful outlook on the life and the work we’ve been entrusted with.

The joy of the Lord is your strength today, Christ-centered creative. So go forth, be joyful, and create with joy.

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Is Creativity a Binary Concept or on a Spectrum?

Is Creativity a Binary Concept or on a Spectrum?

My 11-year-old son is on the autism spectrum. As I’ve engaged more deeply with people on the spectrum, especially the young, I’ve noticed that autism manifests uniquely in each individual. It’s not a one-size-fits-all diagnosis; there’s a spectrum of behaviors and traits.

This observation has led me to reflect on how we often perceive many aspects of life in binary terms: black or white, yes or no, up or down. However, reality seldom fits neatly into these categories. More often than not, the answer lies in shades of maybe rather than absolute yes or no.

My wife is well aware of my tendency to operate in extremes. I am either fully engaged or completely detached, rarely finding a middle ground. This got me thinking about creativity and whether we view it as a binary concept.

Is creativity really black and white?

It’s intriguing that in a society with many artists and creatives, we often overlook the complexity of creativity itself. We tend to categorize people as either creative or not, without recognizing the spectrum of creativity that exists. You are not simply an artist, the epitome of creativity, or just plain not creative. Just as individuals on the autism spectrum exhibit diverse traits, each of us carries the creative DNA of our Creator and have a diversity of creativty baked within us. We all have at least a drop of creative potential because we are made in the image of God.

For some, creativity manifests in visible talents like illustration or performance. For others, it may remain hidden and, consequently, undernourished. The diversity of gifts and talents God bestows upon us is meant to be utilized and stewarded uniquely by each person, much like our unique fingerprints.

But what does creativity look like if you’re not someone who typically thinks of yourself as creative?

Accountants, spend time creatively developing efficient systems and processes, finding ways to minimize tax liabilities, identifying innovative solutions for financial analysis and reporting. Mechanics are like artists when they are troubleshooting complex mechanical issues, finding creative workarounds when missing certain parts, and improvising tools and techniques for specific repairs.

If you’ve ever seen a chef creating a beautiful meal, it’s clear why they call it the culinary arts. Or consider a teacher designing engaging lesson plans, finding creative uses of simple school supplies to create something beautiful with their students, or developing teaching methods to suit different learning styles through differentiated instruction.

Sales people develop innovative marketing strategies, administrative assistants find creative ways to prioritize tasks, and adapting care plans to meet individual needs as a nurse are just a few examples of how many “non-creatives” go unnoticed as some of our most brilliant creative minds. We should all recognize that we were made by a God who not only embodies creativity but who pours it into His creation and calls us to harness it.

One of the greatest tragedies of the human experience can be forgetting, or worse, never realizing our human potential.

Those who have been deemed creatives often see their creative potential with bright and bold eyes looking to tap into it, but many who have falsely received the designation of “non-creative” tend leave that box unexamined. As a result, the world doesn’t get to experience the fullness of the creativity within them. Non-creatives, you have been living creatively since your birth. Now it’s time to embrace and nurture it. Who knows how far we, as God’s finest creation, can go.

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Is Failure a Reflection of Who You Are?

Is Failure a Reflection of Who You Are?

This week, the blog lost its first subscriber.

If I’m going to be honest, that’s disappointing, especially since it hasn’t been in existence that very long.
When I checked in on the subscriber list and I saw that lonely number one next to the amount of unsubscribers, it made me feel a certain kind of way.

It was tapping into the people pleaser in me, the insecure me, and the version of me that wants to create something that every person that engages with it will passionately love.
The reality is, with every single creation, there’s essentially a handful of different responses. There’s variations of yes, variations of no. And then variations of wow. And of course, we’re going for the wows. But what happens when you get the no’s?
It definitely goes in my box that seems to continually be growing called failures. And here’s the truth that I think we all need to hold on to today.
Failures that remain in your box can be lessons that you learn from. You can choose to pick up the box and open it and educate yourself with its contents in the same way that people would use a textbook.
However, if failure becomes a coat or a badge of sorts, it becomes something that you walk around with, that you carry as a part of who you are. And that is an unhealthy place.
Failure should never be received as a scarlet letter or a personal identifier, but simply an event. And the beauty is we can learn from events. We can grow from events. We can’t learn and grow from parts of who we are.

 

So it’s important that we keep failure in an educational box and not in that wonderful little transparent part of our wallet that holds the ID. Failure is not who we are.

Don’t do the work of the enemy and receive failure as an internal reality. It is through internalizing failure that we end up doing the worst service of all to ourselves: Extinguishing hope.
Christ-centered creatives, we must recognize our hope is in Christ. That any failures are not personal, are not permanent, and are not pervasive. And if each of those are not true, failure is something that we can learn and recover from.

But the moment it becomes personal, we believe the failure to be who we are. The moment it becomes permanent, we believe this failure to be something that we can never change. And the moment it becomes pervasive. We believe that every aspect of our reality is a failure.

So no matter if the failure you’ve experienced is losing a subscriber, finding someone giving you a “no” to your creation, losing a huge client in your business, or finding that your business needs to close…

Remember this, it’s not personal. It doesn’t reflect on who you are at your core.
It’s not permanent. This is something that there is hope for change. Things that have ended can be reborn. You can grow beyond this.
And it’s not pervasive. This is verifiably a singular event.

As you continue to learn and grow, you can be sure that there will be other places where you fail. But don’t ever receive the lie that you are a failure.
And hey, an appropriate response to this could be to subscribe to the blog LOL. Sorry, I couldn’t help it with the shameless plug.

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Is Time Running Out to Pursue Your Dreams?

Is Time Running Out to Pursue Your Dreams?

Happy birthday to me. That’s right. Today I completed my 46th revolution around the sun. LOL.
And I have to tell you, I feel every bit of it. Something about being out of shape and exhausted. It really makes you feel your age. But what I want to talk about today, especially I think as it comes to, you know, those folks who have so many creative ideas, is about a sense of urgency. You know, there’s nothing that can awaken a sense of urgency in you like reminders of the fragility and the preciousness of time.
You know, as I woke up today after not sleeping so great last night, I really felt like there’s not as much time left as I wish.
I’d love to think that I’ve got another 46 years in me. But that would make me 92. And I’ve got to believe that in a very real sense, the largest part of my best days are behind me.
I don’t mean to try and make this post a depressing one. But it is one of those moments that reminds me that I need to move forward in my plans. Because you never know when you will celebrate your last birthday. So in this brief blog post today, I just want to leave you all with this. Think about the things that you’ve envisioned. Think about the dreams that God has put on your heart. And now stop thinking about them and go and do them.
I don’t want to be 60, 70, and living with regrets for all that I did not accomplish. But even worse, I don’t want to be in a casket at 47 with so many things left undone.
All we have is this current moment. Let’s treasure it and make it count.

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