Creator Spotlight: Scooter Mann

  • writer, producer, voice actor, host, audio engineer, and showrunner!

Readers! Let’s give a good hearty welcome to Scooter Mann!


Scooter Mann is a writer, producer, voice actor, host, audio engineer, and showrunner.

Basically, he’s the person in charge of Legendsmith Productions. That’s the company that runs 3 different podcasts (Anansi Storytime – Fairy Tale / Folklore Radio Drama; Legendsmith – Show and Tell for Radio Dramas, plus some one-off stories; Geekcore Radio – Dedicated to introducing people to new weird music) and the Story Forge Network (right now that’s just those 3 podcasts, the plan is to add others they don’t wholly own later)

Scooter, thanks for agreeing to be here today. Most interviews start off with bios and such, and while I’ll get to that as always, let’s start with the important stuff!

If you could have any pet (real/fantasy/no-allergies/no worries about feeding it) what would it be?

Easily a phoenix. Such a pretty concept. It would really add something to meeting someone for the first time with a phoenix on your shoulder. Especially if it didn’t burn me alive. That would be an unfortunate end to pet ownership.

I wonder if it’s the beauty, the flash, the power, or the symbol of rebirth that appeals most to you.

What do you create and how did you get started?

I run Geekcore Radio mostly by myself, with some support from our audio engineers. Anansi Storytime and Legendsmith are group projects. In both cases I started off doing most of everything by myself, that being writing, editing, acting, some of the basics of audio engineering (I’ve only recently gotten into learning engineering).

I believe that no matter how big we grow I should be familiar with how to do each piece, if not just so I can know when something is done well or not.

These days, for the two Radio Drama style podcasts, I mostly manage, occasionally write, and do some audio engineering. Sometimes I get roped into directing or voice acting, but not very often.

I feel like the key, when you’re learning something new, is finding someone who knows that thing at a professional level, to at least show you what you’re doing wrong and point you in the right direction. The support of the creative community for Radio Drama / Audio Drama has been fantastic.

I suppose this is when I should let the readers know that I am one of your voices for these projects. Not all the time, but I love being a part and watching it grow and improve. You’ve come a long way and it’s been a great journey to be even the tiniest part of.

What do you like to read?

Lots of sci-fi, fantasy, modern fantasy, philosoph… You know what, I’ll give you some examples, that’s probably easier.

My favorite series currently are: The Dresden Files, The Iron Druid Chronicles, KingKiller Chronicle, and John Dies at the End (sorry, while I liked Harry Potter, not in my top series). Individual Books: The Way of the Peaceful Warrior, Blink, 4 Hour Work Week, and the Wonderbook (a book on methods of writing sci-fi/fantasy, it’s amazing, I highly recommend).

What a great selection, mostly right up my ally. I should probably finally check out that Wonderbook… you’ve recommended it to me more than once at this point.

Name one commonly accepted piece of audio drama/podcast advice that doesn’t work for you.

Have a regular schedule.

Having to keep a regular release schedule. A lot of people say this very often. I haven’t seen this to be as big of a concern with most of our traffic coming from apps where people subscribe then come back to it when a new episode comes out. With how long it takes to produce a given episode either we’d have 1 to 2-year gaps between seasons, wouldn’t be sleeping or would burn out trying to keep any reasonable release schedule (like one every 2 weeks or 1 a month).

It matters more to me that we produce high-quality material than getting it out there as soon as possible. I hope our fans understand.

With the way Anansi works, being a folklore radio drama, I can definitely see that being a binge-worthy sort of show. I wonder if Geekcore or Legendsmith might work better with a monthly schedule?

Name one commonly accepted piece of podcasting advice that they can pry out of your cold, dead hands.

Backups!

We have lost lots of older stuff while trying to make space for new stuff. Especially when your project can take several terabytes for a single season.

Make a backup directory somewhere for the things you’ve finished and are done with, in case you ever need to go back to it for whatever reason. Preferably not something in your house where you can lose it, but on the internet or in a safe somewhere.

Oh, and make sure you save and back up things you’re working on often. You never know when a computer could die losing hours upon hours of hard work.

Oh no! That’s super frustrating and definitely a major set-back. I’m sure most writers and digital artists would agree with that advice, too.

Shameless Self-Promotion time!

For one, all of our shows can be found at our website, but if you type in their names into a Podcast App they should come up pretty quick there too. I like Overcast and Podcast Addict, but the default apps that come with the iPhone and Android phones work great too! (Plus they’re simpler if that’s your preference).

  1. If you like Fairy Tales and Folklore acted out with SFX and fancy production, you’ll love Anansi Storytime (kids and adults). 
  2. If you want information on other Audio Drama / Radio Dramas out there or want to hear some of our stranger projects not related to Folklore, go check out Legendsmith
  3. If you’re finding you want to hear some music that very different than what you might hear on the radio and pretty weird in general (often somewhat nerdy), check out Geekcore Radio.
  4. I also have a few personal things out there, I’m on Twitter(@scootronic) and have a Facebook Page(@scootermannsweb) where I mostly either talk about projects I’m working on or share weird stuff I’ve found on the internet. We all love weird internet stuff, right?

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