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My Top Podcasts - 2019 Edition | DAREN SMITH

My Top Podcasts – 2019 Edition

Hope your summer is off to a great start! I’m currently editing season 6 of Relative Race which we shot the last week of April to the first week of May. It’s been nice to get into the edit on this show. I am a senior producer on it, so to be able to dive deeper into the story has been eye opening and very fulfilling.

I’m a self-proclaimed podcast connoisseur, and have found them to be an incredibly cheap – and often fun – way to learn from people at the top of different industries. 

Wanted to share a few of my favorites over the summer (so as not to overwhelm you with one MASSIVE post) and see what some of YOUR favorites are so I can continue to expand my library. Here’s a few, hopefully there’s something you’d enjoy in the mix. This month is a focus on Filmmakers, and next month I’ll send my favorite writing podcasts, then business & personal development podcasts in August.

(All are links to Apple Podcasts, but I highly recommend checking out Overcast as your podcast player. I’ve used it for years and it’s SO much better than the Apple Podcasts or Spotify apps)

For Filmmakers:

Scriptnotes – two “A-list” screenwriters, John August and Craig Mazin, break down the ins & outs of screenwriting as well as so much more as it comes to film. The first podcast I recommend to anyone getting into film and screenwriting. It’s the only podcast on this list where I actually own merch (3 t-shirts to be specific) if that shows you how much I love this show. I’ve been a listener since episode one, and they just crossed episode 400.

The Business – hosted by Kim Masters from The Hollywood Reporter, which gives you a quick update on things in the industry and a more in-depth conversation with a filmmaker. Short and sweet, but helps me feel somehow connected to the industry even though I live in Utah.

Children of Tendu – another two writers talking about writing, but this one more specific to television. Hosted by Javier Grillo-Marxuach and Jose Molina who have written on tons of my favorite shows, it’s a look into the world of writing and working in TV that is super interesting and helpful to anyone wanting to break in.

The Empire Film Podcast – great banter, and some of my favorite interviews with filmmakers. 

The Producer’s Guide – as a producer, this feels like a God-send. Todd Garner has produced a ton of big budget movies as a producer and studio head, and his conversations with other producers and filmmakers are pure gold. I’ve had to stop the podcast dozens of times to pull over and take notes. 

The Q&A with Jeff Goldsmith – I’ve been to a few of Jeff’s screenings where he records the Q&A podcast after and he’s a great host who asks really great questions of his guests. His series of interviews with Christopher McQuarrie, for example, are a masterclass.

For Writers:

Story Grid – Shawn Coyne is a book editor who wrote a book by the same name. The book changed the way I write, and the podcast is unreal. The way he breaks down the writing and story telling process is incredible and you just have to dive in to fully understand. The initial structure of the podcast is Shawn helping a newer writer, Tim Grahl, write his new novel with weekly check-ins, but the podcast applies to so much more than just writing novels. MUST check this one out.

Launch – John August (yes, from Scriptnotes) wrote a series of books called Arlo Finch, and gives a behind-the-scenes look into the whole process of writing, publishing, printing, distributing, and marketing a book. A great “mini-series” that gives a ton of insight into the process at that level.

The Self Publishing Show – Mark Dawson is an independent writer who has managed to build a brand and a following that’s grown to him making 7-figures a year as a writer and teacher. He speaks each week with other writers on the indie side of the book writing and publishing world and the conversations are illuminating and inspiring. 

The Writers Panel – Ben Blacker hosts these weekly conversations with other writers, generally focused on TV and feature film writers, and dives into the nuts and bolts of writing. I attended the live 300th episode a few years ago and it was one of the best learning experiences of my life.

For Business/Personal Development:

Akimbo – Seth Godin is the king of marketing and understanding business, and his weekly podcast (as well as his daily blog) are two of the things I never miss. There are answers to questions that I’ve had for years that I’ve received through this podcast, which is so insightful and easy to digest, while still giving you more to dive into. 

Freakonomics Radio – a fun look into questions and parts of different industries that I literally have never thought about, but then end up so glad that I took the time to listen. Haven’t heard a bad episode. They are some of the best produced and most engaging podcasts I’ve heard.

How I Built This – conversations with CEOs about how they built their business, but more in depth than what you’d get in a 5 min spot on tv.

The Moment with Brian Koppelman – Brian is one of the most curious people I’ve met. Currently the showrunner of the show Billions on Showtime, he still takes time each week to have these conversations centered around big moments in people’s lives that helped them become who they are. 

Naval – short sound bites (typically less than 5 minutes) that pack more insight than entire books on the subject. Naval has a way of breaking down complex topics into actionable items to start implementing as you strive to create wealth for yourself and your business.

The Tim Ferriss Show – I’d be remiss to leave it off the list. Tim’s podcast has also been incredibly illuminating and the conversations he has are so great. You feel like a fly on the wall in some of the best rooms imaginable. If you haven’t listened yet, I’d highly recommend it.

The Chase Jarvis Live Show – Chase has a great way of interviewing people and getting them to open up. He’s a world-renown commercial photographer and has these great conversations with people you’ve always wanted to hear from. He gets practical advice from them to help you as you’re working on your craft and your business.

Daren In Podcast Form – yes, even I have a podcast. I’ll be picking it back up over the next few months and will be posting 1-2 episodes a month, so be sure to subscribe if what you hear on there interests you, or if you’ve enjoyed my writing.

Let me know if you check any of these out, I’d love to discuss them. And please – comment below with any links to YOUR favorite podcasts that I should add to my list. I’m always looking to learn more and podcasts are one of my favorite ways of doing so. 

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