It seems obvious in retrospect, but simply finding and buying a fairly good microphone isn’t the hardest part of recording something like a podcast or other talk radio-style programming. Nor is assembling a workable recording studio with acoustic treatment (or functional equivalent). It’s not even editing, now that there are inexpensive and easy-to-use options like Ferrite.
The hardest part of talk radio is learning how to talk right.
Beyond being interesting and engaging to both the audience and the guest, there is the simple struggle to eliminate filler words. It’s far, far easier to edit out a long, thoughtful silence than it is to edit “um” out of ten places in a single sentence. Beyond that, taking a moment to compose your thoughts before speaking also makes it easier to speak in complete, independent thoughts, reducing the risk of rambling and becoming incoherent or disconnected.
A lot of professionals make it seem easy, but I encourage you to try it for yourself: the next time you have a conversation with someone, try as hard as possible to avoid “um,” “uh,” “you know,” and other filler words. Try to resist the urge to say something immediately. It’s okay to slow down your cadence a bit — in fact, not only can it help with avoiding filler words, it can also work to your favor. Taking a moment before you respond, and slowing down a little bit when you do, can even make you seem a bit more thoughtful overall.
Good luck! It’s a difficult skill to pick up (especially because it’s easy to fall into old habits), but it can be worth it!
Hello! I’m Greg, an American who has lived in Japan since 2008. I have a tremendous fondness for both reading and writing, which helps out quite a bit in my work as a translator: after all, at its core, the job is built on writing. I’ve always been fascinated with languages, and how they can differ in how they treat even seemingly basic, fundamental things. In particular, there are many common Japanese words that have no good English equivalent, so finding a good way to translate them can be a really interesting challenge.
My other hobbies include cooking (Serious Eats is one of my favorite websites, and I cook dinner from scratch nearly every evening), playing games with friends (both tabletop and video games), calligraphy (both English and Japanese, filling an A6 page with some sort of calligraphy practice every day for the past few years), photography, and a long-held interest in computers (as a teenager, I installed operating systems recreationally).
I also drink too much oolong tea.