When I first started podcasting (ahem, no, I don't have a podcast but my listening experience is such an integral part of my week that I am claiming it as my very own verb, to be had), I listened to a lot of Coffee Break French. Apart from the necessary phrase je suis fatigue, which I still declare on the regular, I've moved on from lessons in la langue française to podcasts on freelancing to political shows to the craft of writing. (The NYC-centric Brian Lehrer show has remained a steady, almost-daily touchstone through all my whims and curiosities.)
This is all to say that interests change, and the list below is entirely reflective of the moment and my fascinations. With that, here's a running list of my favorite podcasts, lately:
The War on Cars For those of us who long for places where we can wander or cycle without fear of imminent death. Start with this episode that imagines the impossible: designing our spaces with our 3-foot beings in mind.
Strong Towns For ideas and inspo on walkability, livability, and sustainable place-making. In the suburbs, no less!
Longform How longform, reported pieces get made and why, via interviews with writers. Good stuff on writer's histories and stories of how they developed their careers and found their stories.
#AmWriting (from writers Jess Lahey and KJ Dell’Antonia). These two have a funny and friendly rapport. (I'm knee deep in their archives and am still not entirely sure which one is talking!) Lots on time management, a bit on psychological self-care for writers, with the bulk of the conversations centering on the craft of writing itself.
Print Run (from agents Laura Zats and Erik Hane). Well-paced, conversationally transparent and insider-ish.
Children's book publishing and librarianship
The Horn Book Podcast (Archived.) A frame for looking at a kids' books with a critical perspective with a dash of reader advisory. In the archives, now, I believe.
Books Between For grown-ups who help kids ages 8-12 connect with the books they love. Includes interviews with authors and round-ups of new middle grade books.
Creativity & inspiration
Design Matters Debbie Millman's entertaining interview series with accomplished designers, artists, and writers.
Beyond a Category
Fresh Air Terry Gross! The master of the interview herself chats with actors, writers, and other news-makers.
The New Yorker Radio Hour I'd like to think that the quirky, idiosyncratic format of this show is inspired by actual, old-timey radio but alas, I haven't spent any time in those kind of archives. There is usually a story or a kernel tucked in each show that gets me going in an unexpected research spiral.
The Brian Lehrer Show Perhaps it's the time-slot it airs here in New York (10 - noon), but I often catch part of a live segment at some point every morning. His coverage since the 2016 election has been inclusive, hopeful, and practical.
Oprah’s Super Soul Conversations For when I feel like going to church but go for a walk instead, with my headphones in.