About a year ago I co-founded Burning Brigid Media, a production company, in order to make videos, web-series, transmedia projects, and other works that go well beyond the books I’ve been writing. It’s a way I can engage in more collaborative art forms with other working creatives, including actors, artists, sound engineers, etc.
Our first major project is Synesthesia Theatre, an audio-drama serial anthology podcast. That’s a hefty mouthful, so let’s break it down.
We’re producing audio drama. Think modern versions of old-time radio shows like The Shadow or Little Orphan Annie. While they’re somewhat rare in the US, barring last year’s Serial, the BBC has been producing various audio drama programs and never really stopped.
Another way to look at them is as full-cast recorded audiobooks, though that isn’t entirely accurate either, as we write scripts for the actors rather than simply having them read aloud. We actually produce them very similar to the way video entertainment is produced, though of course we have no need for cameras or any visuals. Instead, the focus is on sound engineering.
Serials are stories broken up into episodes that, collectively, tell a story. Unlike a series the episodes themselves are not entirely self-contained, but end on cliffhangers that lead into the next episode.
Synesthesia Theatre is not a single serial, though… instead, it’s an anthology of serials, stories that are themselves 6-12 episodes long.
We’re releasing these stories, for free, as a podcast. Episodes air twice a month, every other week, and will be available through iTunes and the podcast’s RSS feed.
Iron Horses Can’t Be Broken audio adaptation
Our first project is an audio-drama adaptation of the sixth Galvanic Century novel, Iron Horses Can’t Be Broken. It’s an 11-episode steampunk western story starring a dozen local Chicago actors, produced over the last months of 2015. It’s written in such a way to be accessible to listeners unfamiliar with the series.
Why adapt Iron Horses Can’t Be Broken? Simple. The story was already written. While adapting to a new media is work, it’s not as much work as coming up with a new story whole-cloth. It’s a way to make use of the work we’ve already done, and to draw in fans of an existing series without making it difficult for new listeners.
Synesthesia Theatre launched at the beginning of February. If you’re interested in giving it a listen, you can check it out on iTunes. If you enjoy it, it would really help if you would consider writing a review to let us know what you think. If you really dig it, you can get cool exclusive bonuses by donating to our Patreon.