writing other genres
Audio of Rusty telling Craig & Liddle story, click here.
By Rusty DeWees
When folks ask me how I come up with the story ideas, situations and characters I use in my show, I tell them about one of my favorites characters, Craig.
While driving along one day, a buddy of mine and I saw a three-legged dog running along the side of the road. My buddy said, “Hey, look at that one-leggid dog.”
He meant three-legged dog of course, but his Freudian slip made me think, a one-legged dog, hmmm. I thought about how interesting and unusual a one-legged dog’s life would be. I imagined a one-legged dog doing dog things like playing fetch, chasing cars and even sitting the way dogs do, propped up by their front legs. I thought if a dog’s remaining leg was one of it’s front legs, and you did that “shake-your-paw” thing, the dog would fall forward on its face.
My friend’s Freudian slip was plenty enough seed for me to build an entire story, and in doing so I created Craig, the one-legged dog, and his owner, Liddle:
“I got a friend named Liddle. We call him Liddle, cause he’s liddle, and he says very liddle, n’ he’s got liddle eye’s, liddle teeth, a liddle bit a hair up on top of his head sticks up a liddle. But mostly the reason I call him Liddle, is cause don’t know matter what’s goin’ on around him, he’s always got a liddle smile goin’.”
Liddle is an amalgamation of two guys I used to work with. I borrowed the physicality from one of the guys, the mannerisms from the other. Read more »
Caleb Daniloff is a writer and radio commentator. To read his blogs or listen to his commentaries, go to www.calebdaniloff.com The YWP is partnering with Vermont Public Radio to help you produce radio commentaries for a series called "My Life." For more, click on "Radio Commentaries" in the left sidebar.
By Caleb Daniloff
Forget what you know about writing. Forget computer screens and words on the page. Forget about your eyes. Radio is all about the ears. You’re writing not to be read but to be heard.
Radio is a means of mass communication, but you want to write as if you’re talking to one person — your dad at breakfast or a friend over lunch. That’s what Betty Smith, longtime producer at Vermont Public Radio, tells her commentators.
“At its best, radio is intimate,” she says. “Don’t write a speech, a lecture or a press release. Write a personal narrative that sounds like your half of an informal conversation.” Read more »
Pete Sutherland who has toured the U.S. in a variety of bands over the years, has a number of ideas for students to help them write lyrics. Here are his top hints:
Diana Winn Levine offers these hints on songwriting by explaining how she goes about the discipline of writing songs:
By Jon Gailmor
My songwriting history doesn’t even vaguely resemble that of Paul Simon, Smokey Robinson or Carole King. Would that it did. My first complete lyrics were “I wanna take a bath with Cath” composed in kindergarten, where we were on a first-name basis with our teachers and were encouraged to express our feelings. I was quite the child prodigy, except for the fact my next lyrics didn’t take shape until I was 23, out of college and hitchhiking through Europe.