Back in the spring, SiriusXM and PW came up with the idea of creating a PW-branded show that would air on SiriusXM’s Book Radio channel. It would be an hour long, it would air weekly, and it would be full of awesome consumer-focused bookish goodness. Based on the podcast I’d been doing for PW, I was asked to be one of the hosts. For the other, we picked my fellow editor Mark Rotella, who handles consumer nonfiction reviews and our regular “Why I Write” feature; between the two of us we see most of the popular books, Mark had done some radio promo for his own book that demonstrated his great voice and presence, and we work well together.
“Come to the studio and record a demo,” the Sirius execs said. To do that we needed an interviewee. Neil Gaiman graciously consented to be a guinea pig (as well as a demonstration that we could scare up some literary star power on short notice), and at the appointed time we called him and interviewed him “on the air” in Sirius’s very spiffy studio. That piece will probably never see the light of day, but it did its job of being a satisfactory proof of concept. We did a live broadcast from BEA in June, which made everyone very happy, and since then it’s been a matter of getting the details hammered out to everyone’s satisfaction.
Now I’m delighted to announce that Publishers Weekly Radio is officially a thing! It is a thing, specifically, that happens on SiriusXM Book Radio (channel 80) every Thursday at 3 p.m. Eastern Time. You can listen on your handy SiriusXM device or through the Sirius website. Our first broadcast was on December 6th, interviewing Eloisa James about her romance novels and memoir and chatting with PW children’s reviews editor John Sellers about Christmas books for kids, and we’ll keep doing them until they make us stop. So far it’s exhausting and fun in about equal measure, and over time I expect we’ll build up our radio muscles and it will get more fun and less exhausting.
Please do tune in, follow us on Twitter at pubwklyradio, and send us suggestions for future people to interview–maybe Neil will be willing to do it again for real this time!–and questions to read and answer on the air. The focus is very much on providing industry insider info that will demystify books and publishing, and we’d love to know what you would want to hear on a show like that.
(And yes, I’m still doing everything else I was already doing at PW.)