For Headliner Highlight 14, we hear from Lorna Bremner of the Closure Optional podcast! Check it out!

Tell us about your podcast.

Hi, I’m Lorna, and my podcast is called Closure Optional. It is a raw and honest discussion about motivation, human potential, why we do what we do, what gets in our way, and how we keep going when **** gets a bit rough.

Why did you start podcasting?

I’ve been doing the podcast for about a year-and-a-half, and I started because the best moments of my life can all be defined by a single thing, which is a sort of selfless connection to what I’m doing, whether it’s an art, sports, or learning something, or love. And my worst moments are when I **** that up by getting myself in the way.

So I wanted to know how other people experience their best moments, and their worst, and then share it with as many people as possible to hopefully steer more of us in the direction of our potential, and away from our doubt.

How do you promote your podcast episodes?

I’m the worst at this. In fact, I don’t know; I have like a psychological hatred for marketing. But when I release each episode, I share a summary or a little snippet of it through posts on my Facebook and Instagram pages, those are usually Headliner videos, and I do two separate videos, so one for the post on Instagram and Facebook and then one for the story on Instagram and Facebook.

So they’re two separate versions of a Headliner video, and then I also do a post on my Facebook page which includes the link to my website, and that has the full episode.

What has been most effective? Least effective?

Yeah, so what’s the most and least effective way of doing that? I personally am the least effective way to promote my podcast. I could probably use some help in that direction, but yeah, I never sponsored any of my ads, so I find that I have better reach and engagement on Instagram. I don’t know if it’s because more people are on Instagram these days or because I have a different kind of fan base over there.

I try to be silly dand as authentic whenever I’m doing any of my promotion so that it doesn’t feel like people are just being advertised to. At least if they’re not interested in listening to the podcast, they maybe get a laugh out of the post. That’s the idea.

Why do you make Headliners?

I make the Headliners because the app is quick and easy to use. I like that I can keep it simple while making a really clean and useful promo video. I also have a few fans that are hard of hearing, and they really appreciate the subtitles.

I have never had enough time to put closed captioning on any of my videos. What I used to do was get an audio snippet and then put it into my video editing software and then put some pictures behind it, but yeah, I couldn’t figure out how to do the subtitles in there and certainly didn’t have the time to do it.

So when I found Headliner, that was amazing. Creating captioned videos was so much easier to do, and they come out really nice and clean. Also, I can do it from anywhere as long as I’ve got a computer and the internet, and that is pretty neat.

Current podcasting setup?

I use a Zoom H6 handy recorder with a couple of dynamic XLR microphones. If there are three of us, I use three handheld microphones. The handhelds can be a little bit annoying if the guest is not used to holding a microphone. They kind of move it away from their mouth, or the microphone can kind of make noises when they are waving it around in the air. So when I’m in my little studio I have them in boom stands so that they’re talking straight into a microphone they aren’t touching. But on the road, it gets a little bit harder.

I have used the Zoom microphones as well, and they sound fine. I just find that the XLR microphone makes a nice, more intimate, sound.

And then, I use Garageband on my Mac to edit the audio.

What is something you think is overrated or underrated in podcasting?

I think overproduced, scripted, and radio-style shows are overrated. I think the podcast’s beauty is its ability to be raw and free, and I like that sort of wild-west chaos of uncensored, unaffiliated content.

This might sound like I’m contradicting myself, but I think that sound quality and production value are underrated in the audio of a podcast. I think the age of the internet and anybody being able to produce anything is cool, but at the same time, we seem to have forgotten the lost art of production value and quality sound or quality video. So when I [was talking about] this sort of wild-west before, I meant content, not necessarily sacrificing sound quality. Someone could have the best ideas in the world, but if it’s crackly or buzzing, or the volume mix is all over the place, the ideas don’t get heard, and it’s a waste of time think.

There’s like a beautiful art to creating something that feels really free and natural while simultaneously being meticulously quality controlled. And that is my daily struggle. That’s what I’m, I think, trying to achieve with my production anyway.

If someone was to only listen to one episode of yours, which one would you send?

If I was to only send one episode of my podcast it would definitely be Episode 53 – The BDSM Party. It’s got some interviews in it, and also some monologues from me, so it kind of captures the range of stuff that tends to happen on the podcast.

Do you have a favorite podcast?

Yes! When I’m listening to other people’s podcasts, I definitely have a few favorites that I listen to. I love Bill Burr’s podcast, the Monday Morning Podcast, and also The Blindboy Podcast.

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