To me, FM Radio is like having candy for dinner. It’s all empty calories.
Now before the Internet falls down on me for condemning the radio industry, let me just say this is a personal choice, not a critique of your own personal tastes. If you can’t handle that, please leave the room.
Okay, are those dinosaurs gone? Great!
Thereare much better things to listen to in your car than FM radio.
There are podcasts on nearly any topic you can think of, so after I quit FM radio I turned to things that would either entertain me, educate me, or (best of all) both. Writing podcasts, freelancing podcasts, gaming podcasts—I ripped through all of their archives, only stopping to immerse myself in an audiobook.
Through podcasts I’ve gotten great writing tips, learned valuable business lessons, and spent time with my favorite celebrities.
The incredibly awesome folks at Writing Excuses had been promoting audible.com for as long as I can remember, and then one day I decided to cave in and try it out. And my life has gotten so much better.
My first audiobook was The Lies of Locke Lamora, by Scott Lynch, narrated by Michael Page. And it was absolutely amazing. Scott Lynch is a wonderful author, and the book had a riveting plot and engaging characters, but Page’s performance sold me on the whole audiobook thing. He seamlessly imbued every single character with distinct voices and personalities—even the bit players.
I was hooked.
Yes, I still do listen to music on occasion. But when I do, I’d rather listen to my own selection rather than the same pre-constructed list of songs that repeats every 20 minutes. iPods and satellite radio services have been around for ages (not literally), so nothing new there. But like I said, having your own list of favorite artists beats have musicians you can barely tolerate shoved down your ear canals.
The Last Word
Are the FM fans back? Okay, good to see you again!
Some people prefer FM radio, and that’s fine. I enjoyed it too, and I sometimes still listen for a while if I find the right show or it’s playing the right music.
But I’m getting a lot more satisfaction and enjoyment from audiobooks and podcasts right now than I ever did listening to radio. I’ve seen a new world folks, and I’m never going back.
If you want to check out what I’m listening to, here are some:
- Writing Excuses – The best fiction writing podcast out there
- The Business of Freelancing – Valuable tips on running your freelance business
- Grammar Girl – Use the English language properly!
- Nerdist Podcast – Hear your favorite celebrities shoot the shit
- The Indoor Kids – Videogames and nerdy stuff
- Nerdist Writer’s Panel – TV and movie writers talk about their craft
- Discworld series by Terry Pratchett
- The Powder Mage Trilogy by Brian McLellan
- The Gentlemen Bastards by Scott Lynch
- The Goblin Emperor by Katherine Addison
- Lindsey Stirling – dubstep violin (I know, right?)
- Jonathan Coulton – geek music
- Cage the Elephant – rock
- The Silent Comedy – folk rock
- OverClocked Remix – Various artists remixing videogame music
I’m always looking for great stuff to listen to, so if you have any faves, please share!