Heard back from Sasha Aslanian! She's a producer for Minnesota Public Radio / American Public Media, by the way. Thank the heavens above! I have real people interested in my work. Even though this journal is already epically long and I am only a week or so into production, I want to include the emails from her... she agreed to be one of my evaluators. 'Tis a miracle.
Hi Kelly, (just noticed that she thinks my first name is my last name. oh well.)
I'm sorry, I meant to call you from work today, or at least to write back more quickly. Your project sounds great, and thanks for your kind words about mine. I'm curious, did you hear the whole hour, or just the 10 minutes on NPR? I ask because in the hour, I was able to include tape with lots of experts, but I also interviewed my own parents. I think your idea of looking at one divorce through the eyes of four siblings sounds fascinating.
I did interview my little brother for the piece, but I ultimately didn't use him. He's a little more reserved than I am, and as a boy, he was also a lot more checked out about family dynamics and out on his dirt bike with his friends. I recorded him when I thought joint custody would feature more prominently in my story. When my family did it, it was still pretty new and controversial, and I felt like if there was a silver lining to my family's divorce, it was that my brother and I had a really close relationship with our dad as well as our mom because he shared so equally in the parenting. But as I got deeper into the project I realized I had already bitten off quite a chunk of social history and had to lop out joint custody.
I'd love to listen to your finished piece and chat with you about your interest in radio. These are tough days for job hunters, but hopefully things will pick up soon.
Keep me posted on the timing, and then do you want to send me a file (through yousendit) or a CD or upload it to an FTP server?
I'm also happy to talk before then.
Best of luck,
This was my reply...
Thank you so so much for getting back to me, Sasha. And thank you for being so helpful and willing to listen to my work. Hooray!
I listened to your entire piece on PRX (how wonderful is that site?!). I was eight when my parents divorced, so I felt a special kinship to your ten-year-old self. I love your description of the joint custody situation with your parents ("two bedrooms!"). I never knew this until I interviewed them, but my siblings hold a lot of issue with the fact that my mom moved so far away (we hardly ever saw each other). I relate with so much of what you and the women in your book group feel...
relationship issues, independence/adaptability, not really seeing how I was affected until years later, etc. Also, the majority of my thesis comes from Judith Wallerstein's research, so it was great to hear her featured in your work.
I have about 12 hours of source material for my 30 minute piece... it is proving an interesting job! I will be finishing up my final rough cut at the end of March. I would love to send it to you at that point (I think yousendit would be best). I submit the final piece to Emerson the third week of April, so that would give me some time to incorporate changes and such. I also work full-time, so that's why my post-production timeline is a little longer than it normally would be.
You are amazing and your work is amazing. Thanks again.
And here is her (almost immediate) reply to that...
Aw, thanks so much. I went and told another Emerson alumn here about you. He's Bob Collins, a longtime editor, broadcaster and online maverick who does our newscut blog.
He says Emerson is much better now than when he went there in the 1970s.
He's a funny guy.
I feel like I always have a ratio of about 30 hours of field tape for each hour of radio. Sometimes 60. We create the illusion for listeners that all moments are riveting.
Talk with you when your piece is ready. Looking forward to it.
YES!!!! I am super pumped on all of this. Who knows where it might lead, right?