What I was in third grade, my parents bought me on of those radio microphones, the ones where you could tune into a low-frequency dial on the radio and broadcast yourself over the airwaves. I used it to rap alongside Ray Parker, Jr’s theme song to Ghostbusters.
Go ahead. You know you want to.
I already knew that I cannot sing, but I quickly discovered that I cannot rap, either — even by Ray Parker Jr. standards. If I wanted a career on the radio — and I loved radio — that left me with dj.
A few years later (sixth grade? seventh?), our local tv station in Texas was trying to horn in on the MTV market with a Saturday video show featuring teenage vjs, and I talked my parents into taking me to the mall so I can stand in line for the initial interviews. When I finally sat at the long paper-covered table with my sad little application in hand, the adult across the table asked me just one question: “Why do you want to be a vj?”
I said, “Well, I’ve always wanted to be on radio. And really, a vj is just a dj on camera, right?”
Just like that, I was dismissed.
But never give up on your dreams, kids! Because here I am, almost 25 years later, and I’m on the radio!
Last night, Bud Smith — fiction editor at Red Fez — invited me on his Internet radio show, The Unknown Show at Literary Underground. I mentioned this last week, when Bud had on David McNamara of sunnyoutside press to talk about all their books (including mine!), so getting to come on as a follow-up this week was awesome enough all on its own. But you guys! I was on right after my writer friend Robert Vaughan, whom I’ve never actually met in real life but whose work I love and with whom I love interacting online.
It was almost as much fun listening to Robert while I was on hold for my turn (Robert managed to mention my writer friend Lidia Yuknavitch, too, and he managed to open up a hell of a segue into my section)!
And then my own conversation with Bud begins around the 85-minute mark. I wish my phone was clearer — I sound like I’m underwater — but hey, it was a great conversation, and I loved chatting with Bud about my chapbook (Box Cutters, from sunnyoutside press) and my forthcoming novel (Hagridden, from Columbus Press). And then I get to close with a reading from the chapbook.
If you want to listen to the show as a whole, you can find it online at http://www.blogtalkradio.com/theliteraryunderground/2013/12/18/the-unknown-show-w-bud-smith.
Huge thanks to Bud Smith for bringing me on, and I hope to do it again sometime. 🙂