What’s The Good Word?
by Nick Galieti
Many of the subcultures that one can find in the world have their own sub-subcultures. While Mormonism is treated as a religious subculture in many ways, the faith is finding its way to representation in the mainstream in many parts of the world. With few members scrutinized and appraised as prominent figures in the public eye, there is still so much left to be discovered in its rich and varied people. What we may not fully appreciate is the volume of written works, contributed daily, by the subculture of LDS writers.
Mormons as a people have always been considered an industrious and self-motivated people, and LDS writers are no different. Many self-publish or start their own small publishing companies, while others are bolstered by the efforts and resources of larger LDS-themed publishers such as Deseret Book and its affiliate companies and imprints, as well as other larger independent publishers like Cedar Fort. LDS writers contribute in a variety of forms ranging from magazines to traditional published works, blogs, and comic strips, and on every subject imaginable. While not all subjects or formats are exclusively faith-promoting, LDS writers are watermarked in their writing by a faith designed to touch upon every aspect of life.
The challenge with both the audience and the producers of such content is that there is no mainstream platform or media base that allows readers an exposure to the vast selection of written works available. Sub-subcultures have a smaller audience base that tends to make traditional advertising cost-prohibitive or simply ineffectual, so few readers are able to connect with the gamut of authors or really engage with their favored niche.
As a published LDS author myself, I found it a challenge to track down avenues to discuss and find publicity for my book on the Sacrament, even in an LDS context. Traditional radio might not find it commercially viable to offer a show based strictly on LDS authors and their writing, while TV is even more cost-prohibitive. However, with the technology and popularity of Podcasting, or radio-on-demand, through websites and mobile devices (including smart phones), LDS authors can have a more targeted and less cost-prohibitive way to distribute targeted information to a self-selected audience.
With a background in Sound Engineering and as a Record Producer and Documentarian, I felt compelled, and able, to start a podcast that broadcast LDS writers to an LDS audience. Due to my relationship with my publisher, Bret Eborn or Eborn Books, and the multiple locations throughout Utah (the apparent heart of at least the current LDS writing world) a marriage of purpose and desire for cultural recognition gave birth to The Good Word Podcast.
Recorded in a small studio (affectionately referred to as “the audio cave”) inside of the downtown Salt Lake City Eborn Books location, The Good Word is a podcast featuring LDS authors and their works. On The Good Word Podcast we get to know the authors within the LDS writing world, about their latest titles and projects, as well as each author’s craft and approach to writing and publishing as well. Following the recording of each podcast, typically done on Friday nights, each author is able to do a book signing inside the largest book store in the State of Utah. This unique opportunity is both entertaining and enlightening, a unique opportunity for both an LDS audience and for LDS writers looking to connect with quality works of doctrine, fiction, self-help, and even LDS blogs.
Some authors may not live in or visit the Salt Lake City area, but participate by phone interviews. Each author that participates in the show is invited to leave signed copies of his/her book in a dedicated section of the downtown Eborn Books location set apart as being part of The Good Word Podcast. For those not in the area, copies can be purchased through Eborn Books so everyone has an opportunity to receive signed copies. This centralized effort is designed to help encourage readership, a love of the craft of writing, and promote the LDS writing industry in general.
I host The Good Word Podcast, produced by Radio Gold Productions. The show is sponsored by Custom LDS Scriptures and Eborn Books. Publishers and independent authors, as well as interested listeners, are welcome to contact the show through their website and/or Twitter and Facebook. The show can also be found on iTunes and through the popular Stitcher platform.
Mormons are a well-educated and thoughtful people with much to add in the realm of the written word. The Good Word seeks to offer greater exposure to both LDS writers and the LDS audience interested in a wider selection of styles and genres. To get an idea of the type of interviews offered, scroll down the page here and find the podcast area on the right. Click play for the latest podcast, which at the time of this publication showcases an interview with Real Intent’s Publisher and Editor-in-Chief.
Editor’s Note: Nick’s documentary film, Murder of the Mormon Prophet, will be shown at a special screening at the LDS Film Festival, Thursday January 24, 2013, at the Scera Theatre in Orem.
LDS Writers Interview Series
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- The Cause of Christians
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- Separating Culture from Doctrine
- Gay Marriage and Proposition 8, Part 1