For Better Audio Stories, Leave the Inverted Pyramid Behind


PodMov Daily: Tuesday, August 25

Episode 271: Testing, One Two-sday

For Better Audio Stories, Leave the Inverted Pyramid Behind

Without realizing it, many of us tell stories using the ‘inverted pyramid’ structure we were taught in school. It’s an “elderly news-story construction, which puts the most boring/trivial details at the bottom,” says Holly J. Morris of the NPR Training team. There's a better way to sustain your listeners’ attention.

“The classic inverted pyramid is the ‘Florida man’ story,” Morris explains. “You can stop reading after the bit with the alligator/lawn mower/nudity/beer, because the rest is going to be arid details from the police report.” With its even base, an inverted trapezoid structure introduces compelling material throughout. 

For any podcast genre, treats at a steady pace will make listeners more likely to finish an episode. “At every turn, the reader is rewarded with another grippingly bizarro fact or idea. The very best stuff is distributed, not front-loaded,” Morris says. A trapezoid starts strong and serves your audience until the end.

Vulture is Doubling Its Podcast Features and Reviews

Vulture editor Neil Janowitz has announced a major expansion of podcast coverage. Vulture's parent company, New York magazine, confirms that the site's podcast-related offerings will double. Launching tomorrow is 1.5x Speed, a new weekly podcast-recommendation newsletter from Hot Pod creator Nick Quah.

If there’s a sign that podcasts are now essential media, this is it: “1.5x Speed follows Vulture’s ‘Read Like the Wind' newsletter featuring book recommendations, and the ‘Buffering' newsletter covering the TV industry.” Hot Pod itself, Quah’s industry newsletter, will be moving to Vulture as a syndicated Tuesday column.

A dedicated section at will house “more frequent podcast features and reviews.” Upcoming pieces include an interview with Karina Longworth, creator of acclaimed Hollywood-history podcast You Must Remember This. An essay on the influence of Reply All is also promised, and your editor is jazzed.

Ramsey Call of the Day: 10 Minutes with Money Experts

For nearly 30 years, money expert and national radio host Dave Ramsey has delivered life-changing advice to listeners. With the new podcast Ramsey Call of the Day, 10 minutes is all you need to get quality, common-sense guidance when you need it the most.  

Starting Monday, July 20, you’ll hear from experts like Dave Ramsey, Ken Coleman, Rachel Cruze, Chris Hogan, Anthony ONeal and Dr. John Delony every weekday. Callers from The Dave Ramsey Show have challenges just like yours — tune in for timely solutions you can trust.

Whether it’s knocking out debt or dealing with loss of income, Dave’s team inspires real people to overcome real concerns. Ready to build a more confident future in 10 minutes a day? Subscribe to Ramsey Call of the Day wherever you get your podcasts.

When we give cheerfully and accept gratefully, everyone is blessed.

Here's what else is going on:

  • Asking price: Audible has launched a lower-cost subscription for access to its exclusive podcasts and audio content. Ashley Carman of The Verge has the details, noting that “the platform is developing podcast content, but isn’t pulling them in from third-party RSS feeds.”
  • Lab partners: A PhD program at the University of York forecasts some fascinating research in podcasting. The three-and-a-half-year project will collaborate with BBC producers to study “interactive and personalised podcasting with AI-driven audio production tools.”
  • Little boxes: For podcasts with more than one contributor, a defined editorial workflow prevents all kinds of stress. In a post for The Podcast Host, Mark Webster explains how to optimize the process, complete with detailed calendar examples and delegation tips.
  • Final boss: “There’s a science behind giving a successful interview,” writes Rich Perry in Entrepreneur. The 10-Minute Mentor host urges precise professionalism when dealing with the host ahead of time. They pilot the podcast, but a guest controls the weather conditions.

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