Today we feature one of our own, Lynn Mcguire Raj. She manages our radio program “The INK Hour” which airs every Sunday at 1200 IST!
We decided to sit Lynn down and ask her a few questions on what her experience is like producing a radio show, how she finds her speakers and what a typical week looks like !
1. How do you select your speakers for the INK Hour?
Some we actively seek out, others reach out to us. It’s a mix of strategic planning and serendipity, really. There are a lot of remarkable people doing great things. And some have a physical presence and charisma that make for great video presentations. But audio storytelling creates a different rapport with the listener. It uses different parts of the brain. It requires more imagination from the listener. A story told without visuals really needs to grip the listener. I seek out that “grip” in people’s stories. We also want to ensure that the content is relevant to listeners in the three major metros where we air in Mumbai, Delhi & Bangalore.
2. Tell us about the interview process. What goes on in the planning and coordination?
Persistence and determination! Lots of calls back and forth with Lakshmi, our guests, our RJ and sound engineers. We like to do our homework by researching our guests, and following up with them to fact check before Lakshmi meets them at the studio to record. But sometimes, magic moments just happen. Like recently, Kalaari Capital organized the KStart Institute for entrepreneurs in Bangalore and at last minute, offered Lakshmi a golden opportunity to interview some of their esteemed speakers. And she’s a seasoned storyteller and interviewer, so as long as she’s got a recorder and a mic, she’s good to go!
3. What’s a typical week look like in producing the show?
Radio One needs the edited recordings by Thursday afternoons to air on Sunday, so I’ve really had to hone my time management skills! Finding common threads between the two segments – our featured “Billionaires of Moments” and the INK Talk requires some concentration. And transcribing recordings takes patience. But once I’ve spent some quality time with the material, the theme and direction emerges. Then it’s script time. I often read the script out loud to make sure it’s easy on the ear and that our RJ won’t trip over too many syllables. Sometimes, I end up having to distill pretty technical jargon to make it as relatable to as many people as possible, including me! That’s not always an easy task!
4. What do you enjoy most about working on the radio show?
I have an insatiable curiosity and have been listening to talk radio and podcasts for decades. I love the intimacy of audio. And I love to write, so it feels like a perfect fit. There’s an immense feeling of satisfaction once the last file has been sent to Radio One on Thursday. Followed immediately by a nervous anticipation having to start from scratch with new material for the next episode. I always make sure I’m near a radio on Sundays at noon to catch the final airing, with Radio One’s songs and the masala mixed in. Mostly, I find the work motivates me. The content inspires, for sure, but because we hope to expand in scope and reach, I’m always driven to do better with each show.
5. Where do you hope to take INK Hour in the future?
I’d love to see interest and our audience grow, with more people tuning in weekly and catching our replays on SoundCloud. Talk radio is the perfect antidote to the stresses of traffic while commuting. And it’s a great companion that entertains and even educates while you perform other tasks at home or at work. We’re actively seeking partners and with more on board, we’ll have more resources to go out there and find newsworthy stories, inspiring guests and innovative ideas to share with our listeners.
6. Any particular speaker who left an impression?
Sometimes you just want to read a book from your favorite author. Because you know it’s going to elicit a certain feeling and that’s why you read it. So of course, I have my preferences and enjoy listening to people whose stories I relate to. But one of my favorite guests was someone who’s involved in something I know nothing about – civic governance. In an episode that aired on January 22nd, V. Ravichandar talked to Lakshmi about teams he develops – comprised of local government officials and corporate leaders. He cultivates these unlikely teams to essentially come up with hacks to improve city living. The efforts this man goes to – on a pro bono basis most of the time – to ideate and implement solutions for traffic, waste management and infrastructural challenges across India’s cities is remarkable. Now every time I pass by workers doing repair work on the roads, I wonder if he’s had some hand in it. More importantly, he got me thinking about how I can play a more active role in improving my own community (to hear about Ravi and his work, click here.).
To me, the mark of great storytelling is the impact it has in our everyday lives. There was life before you heard it… but then after, the way you see the world and or how you conduct yourself in it has changed in some small way. I hope that the work we do on the INK Hour helps to create positive shifts in others, one commute or Sunday lunch at a time!
The INK hour airs every Sunday at 12pm in Mumbai, Delhi & Bangalore on 94.3 Radio One. To listen back to a previous show, head to our Soundcloud!