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30 minutes | 3 months ago
'My Medium Career (Ego)' - Word Docs
The Word Docs bare their bruised egos this week and attempt to find a balming (is that a word?) salve. Alex drags Sean and Amy into the cobwebby corners of their psyches, seeking to learn whether ego is a help or a hindrance in an artist's life. This week we'll learn about the book that broke Sean; traverse the Dark Place and the Vague Place; confront mediocrity; and try to ignore the fact that Alex's dad seems to be popping out of the wardrobe. We tackle troubling questions, such as: Is smugness perilous? What projects should we say no to? Where's the line between self-belief and delusion, or self-belief and narcissism? And is Caleb Lewis real? (Spoiler: we don't believe he's real.) Join us for an unusually serious and vulnerable episode Of Word Docs. Please...?See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
31 minutes | 4 months ago
“There Will Be Nudity” (Pilgrimages) - Word Docs
Before you write your magnum opus – or perhaps during – a visit to a distant shore to get you in the mood and help you find the perfect setting for your novel is not a bad idea. Likewise, visiting the scene of your favourite work can bring you deeper into an author’s mindset. This week, the Word Docs share their tales of pilgrimages. From the ice flats of Antarctica to the oppressive heat of a bathhouse in Shinjuku, the dynamic trio are not afraid to push boundaries and smash social norms...even if it ends in injury and humiliation. Stay tuned for the outtake: It's longer than Alex's novel.See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
32 minutes | 4 months ago
'Too Much Busyness and Noise' (Downtime) - Word Docs
The Word Docs are stirring from their slumber and weaving their magic – both the whimsical technicolour kind and the wicked dystopian kind – on a raw 2021. How do writers recharge after an insane year? Is downtime part of the process? What do these people do when they're not abusing stationary? You may think the Word Docs simply fold up neatly into cupboards, but no...some of us jog!See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
33 minutes | 5 months ago
'The Avengers Season Finale (interview with Dr Piri Eddy and Dr Peter Beaglehole)'
This week we have a full pod of doctors and a bonus Word Dog, as the Word Docs are joined by playwrights Piri Eddy and Peter Beaglehole, and Piri's dog Murphy. We explore the experience of writing and producing plays, the life affirming joys of working with other humans, and the reasons why sometimes you just have to go a little nuts. There are power tools and secret ninjas, and Alex gets approximately 20% more manly. Come along and help us probe the vexed questions of playwrights the world over: Why theatre? Can we start a fight in the foyer? Why bring the world together when you can rip it apart? And when will the secret ninja come to our rescue?See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
38 minutes | 5 months ago
"Here’s to Brutality" (Editing and Publishing Live!)
From big structural issues to hooks and semicolons, and everything in-between ... the Word Docs are all over it. Together, Amy, Sean and Alex have edited a lot and been edited even more. In this episode the docs become surgeons, unpacking the editorial process in forensic detail. See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
33 minutes | 6 months ago
“What Did the ’80s Bring Us?” (Coping with the Unexpected)
There’s no getting around the fact that we live in strange and difficult times, from a global pandemic to a ‘Leader of the Free World’ who refuses to concede defeat –– but, never fear, the Word Docs are here to provide their remedies! Join Amy, Alex and Sean as they unpack the ups and downs of creating new work and telling new stories in the midst of isolation and upheaval. For Sean, it’s about chocolate. For Alex, it’s about Moscato. For Amy, it’s about finding a room without a random relative in it. Every decade has its challenges, and its lessons...now is the perfect time to reflect on where we've been and plan ahead for the tales of tomorrow. See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
33 minutes | 6 months ago
'Kiss, Date, Marry' (Submitting Your Work) - Word Docs
In this episode, we compare submitting your work to setting up a profile on Tinder. How far can we take this metaphor? Too far. Much, much too far. As a Tinder virgin (metaphorically speaking), Alex is grilling the pros (not a metaphor, although they do get paid for it) on how to submit your work to agents and publishers. How do you find them? How do you talk to them? When are you being too pushy? Do you split the bill? The questions are endless. Don't fret, the Word Docs are here with the ultimate dating guide for writers seeking long-term love in the industry.See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
34 minutes | 7 months ago
‘I’ll Find a Way’ (Research) - Word Docs
This week the Word Docs follow Alice down the rabbit hole and take the academy by the tassels to hash out research outcomes, research expectations and non-traditional research outputs. What is research? How do you do it? Are creative works really so different from scholarly articles? The plucky trio will offer some answers, with only occasional segues into – among other things – honeybees and daises, narcissism and duality, rolling cigarettes, the Elkhorn Mountains, homoerotic cowboys, Matter Transmitters, and Miss Shirley Bassey. But segues, rabbit holes and blind alleys are all part of the researcher’s daily mental adventures...it’s writing them up in a few thousand words that’s the hard part. Like Jeff Goldblum in Jurassic Park, these ‘PhD People’ know that nature, and Sean Williams, always finds a way. See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
29 minutes | 7 months ago
"Happy Halloween Birthday, Amy" (Outtakes) - Word Docs
It’s that special time of year again, and to celebrate Word Docs lifts the veil on their inability to stick to the subject, keep it clean, or avoid the giggles. This adults-only episode collects unused excerpts from nine months of broadcasting in the hope of bringing good cheer or at least the occasional shake of the head to all our listeners. There may even be a word or two about writing. Happy All Hallow’s Eve, everyone. Don’t forget to scare the kids!See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
35 minutes | 7 months ago
“Settle Down, Tiger” (Juggling) - Word Docs
In this episode we're talking about how we juggle multiple projects, completely unaided by clones (lazy bastards). This week the Word Docs cram the muse back in her box and adopt a pragmatic approach to this juggling thing. Anti-romantic to the core, we tackle how to be multiple people at once, how to be one person on multiple projects, how to have a life, and whether balance is possible. Just ignore the mental traffic jams and post-deadline crashes and the fact that none of us know who Betty is or why she hijacked the end of the pod. It turns out we have a few strategies for keeping all our balls in the air. If you have balls too then this is the episode for you!See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
32 minutes | 7 months ago
“We Can Do This” (Return of the Heroes) - Word Docs
They almost succeed. Very, very nearly. This week, Amy, Sean and the other guy do their best to discuss heroes...and end up discussing fairy tales and gender binaries, romantic chemistry and cinema demographics, and anything else that skirts around the issue. Being heroic is hard. Writing heroic characters ain’t a picnic either. Who were the heroes of times gone by? What makes a hero in the modern age? Grab your sword – or your biscuit – and follow the Word Docs as they explore different flavours of heroism. See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
36 minutes | 7 months ago
“Welcome to Thunderdome” (Theme)
Another week, another rant. Place your bets as Amy and Alex face off on a range of issues they more or less politely agree on...while Sean towers with arms folded like a regal Tina Turner. From theme to ideology to politics to rebellion, the Word Docs aren’t afraid to go where Trump and Twitter trolls have gone before. It’s all impressively coherent until Alex forgets to host. Do you catch more flies with honey or with vinegar? Why would you want to catch flies when you have Yo-Yos? Join us for the rumble! See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
36 minutes | 8 months ago
“Kevin Bacon's Shorts” (Guilty Pleasures) - Word Docs
This week the Docs are exploring some of their guilty reading pleasures, although as usual they don't stick to the topic and other guilts are exposed, not least of them someone's fantasies about Kevin Bacon's shorts. Prepare for the over-caffeinated enthusiasm, as we learn who was the bane of their primary school librarians, who has a sadistic streak, and who is a secret sports buff. High art/ low art divide be damned, we're taking on the hegemonic elite and flying our freak flags. See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
34 minutes | 8 months ago
“Stimulating and Unnerving” (Teaching Online) - The Word Docs
COVID-19 threw us headlong into online teaching at a moment's notice, requiring flexibility, agility and the fleet-footedness of a moscato-soaked gazelle. Well, it threw Alex and Sean into online teaching and moscato. Amy was on study leave. Now as Semester Two hits, Amy's joining them on the frontlines, but swapping out the moscato for a nice Clare riesling or a McLaren Vale grenache. What tips can the boys offer? How do you convert a curriculum from face-to-face Socratic teaching to the chat rooms and vids of the interwebs? What are the pitfalls? And what are the unexpected benefits? Pop a cork on your wine of choice and get ready for some truth bombs from three dedicated educators in the age of Zoom.See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
31 minutes | 8 months ago
“I Am Norman Bates!” (What Are We Doing?) - The Word Docs
What have we been doing this year? Other than teaching through lockdown, eating too much chocolate, drinking moscato, and yapping away on this podcast... In this episode we get to catch up on the Word Docs' latest projects, which involve a theatre/film project which is not a porno (but does feature a dominatrix), music made in the Hall of Possibility, and more pseudonyms for the woman who has everything. What other writers do you know who can get kidnapped by pirates on their way to a writing gig? Like, for real. Not in their imaginations. And what other academics do you know who are willing to dish the dirt on what it's really like to be a working writer? Fine, lots of them. But how many of them also make ambient music? One. Sean. Well done, Sean. He's reason enough to listen to this podcast - especially if you're smart enough to listen all the way to the end.See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
37 minutes | 8 months ago
“The Book of Sean” (The 10.5 Commandments) - The Word Docs
In which Sean comes down from the mount, stomps out the burning bush and hands down the ten (and a half - don't forget the half) commandments of writing. After a healthy dose of heckling, his disciples agree they're pretty good. No 'thou shalt not covet thy neighbours ass' kind of good, but 'don't be a dick' is definitely a keeper. See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
30 minutes | 9 months ago
“The Punk Rock of Literature” (Interview with Dr Jonny Zweck)
Meet the man who ruined Alex's milk and cookies by writing a story so abjectly disgusting that it laid waste to bedtime. This week we're kicking off our 'Writers and their Partners' series, talking to Amy's partner, the Horror writer Jonny Zweck. (Sean refuses to participate in this misguided series next, even though it's patently his turn, and his partner is also a doc who writes the words. Alex, meanwhile, is threatening to go pick someone up so he can get involved. Be warned.) There's grammar talk, abject horror and the search for meaning, and the eternal question: how do you pronounce the word 'wolf'?See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
32 minutes | 9 months ago
“Could Do Better” (Savaging Notting Hill)
It's a Showdown! Amy and Sean are going head to head over to Richard Curtis's film Notting Hill, with Alex caught in the middle. Except Alex is too obstreperous to stay above the fray, and Amy and Sean keep agreeing on everything. We can't even argue properly. This week we're looking at character, motivation, embedded sexisms and other isms in Notting Hill (a film from the Dark Ages that we keep finding ourselves arguing over at the pub), and a whole range of random logic holes in films that bear no resemblance to Notting Hill at all. This is peak Word Docs, where there's madness in the method, and we regret everything.See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
31 minutes | 10 months ago
“I Want the Buns!” (Genre)
This week Amy kicks off with a rant about people who want to 'break the mould' of genre fiction, instead of just doing it bloody well, which leads us down the rabbit hole of defining genres, arguing about the rules (knowing the rules; bending the rules; breaking the rules; stop breaking the bloody rules!), following formulas, smashing formulas, value adding and (because it's us) comparing genres to pizza. What other podcast about writing can be so smart and so dumb all at the same time? Guaranteed to be 80% cheeky and 100% 30 minutes long. (This may be our best episode yet, so don't miss it. It's probably all downhill from here.)See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
34 minutes | 10 months ago
“It's the Science Fiction Writers' Fault” (Interview with Garth Nix)
This week we're probing (with consent) Sean's sometime-collaborator Garth Nix. A man who has penned many bestsellers, Garth gives us the lowdown on writing: where he does it (The beach! Alex is astounded. How does he keep the seagulls at bay?), how he does it (By hand! Alex is further astounded. How does he keep his hand from cramping?), and why writing full time was a trap. We get the dish on what it's like drinking in LA with Sean (there's imaginary nudity involved), on how to collaborate (Amy's taking notes and trying not to get hand-cramp), on moonlighting as a publisher and as an agent (clever), and (most importantly) on how to not to get cross. See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
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