As the world of podcasts becomes increasingly global, translation is becoming an evermore popular tool for reaching new audiences.

Image by Galen Beebe

Podcasting is (for the most part) a word-based medium, so translating a podcast brings with it all the issues of any textual translation. Words don’t necessarily have direct analogs, and even if they do, their meaning can change based on context. Grammar suggests a level of intimacy or formality, syntax creates rhythm and suspense, and the way a word looks or sounds imbues it with further layers of meaning. A hard k can chop a sentence, but a sh can soften the blow. Idioms are idiosyncratic, punctuation’s particular, and rhymes connect otherwise unrelated lines.

But we’re not just talking about…

Why both aspiring podcasters and McElroy fans should read the McElroy brothers’ new how-to-podcast book

Editor’s note: This story is a collaboration between the Bello Collective and Timber. Timber is a new podcast hosting company that believes in supporting audio creators who focus on craft and earned experience. Founders and tech podcasters Jon Christensen and Chris Hickman are still putting the finishing touches on the software, so in the meantime, they have been publishing stories related to their mission. Sign up for their beta or read their stories at

One of my favorite Twitter bots is Starting a Podcast. The conceit is simple: It retweets any tweet that includes the phrase “starting a podcast.”…

Tracking time with wizards and wilderness

This piece is written by Elena Fernández Collins and Amber Bulinski. You can see last month’s debuts here.

An illustrated image of an ostrich with its head stuck in the ground and then re-emerging behind it.
An illustrated image of an ostrich with its head stuck in the ground and then re-emerging behind it.
Image: Pixabay

When I think about what happened in August or September, I wonder: Were those two whole separate months that happened and people were able to track days and get things done?

Wow, wild.

These days, the best way for me to track what’s happened is through birthdays or packages that I’ve sent to cheer up friends scattered across the country. In August and September, my family has a total of ten birthdays; when it comes to gifting presents, it’s basically Christmas.


Podcasting was born of the indies, and so is the criticism about it.

Recently, Pulitzer prize winning reporter Jodi Kantor tweeted:

In response, several people linked to reviews from The New Yorker and Vulture, but I’d like to focus on the first part of that tweet: “I wish podcast criticism was a thing.”

Here is a non-exhaustive list of publications that have published podcast criticism in 2020: The New York Times, The LA Times, Harpers, The Appeal, The American Prospect, The Financial Times, Vice, Fast Company, The Daily Maverick, The New Yorker, and Vulture, which in addition to doubling its podcast coverage this year, just published this article from Becca James that…

Seeking information? Entertainment? Comfort? We have the podcast for you.

We are living in a wild time. In a few short months, life all over the world has changed almost beyond recognition. The coronavirus continues to spread, more people are diagnosed with COVID-19 every day, and the future is looking very uncertain. But one thing is clear: social distancing will help us to flatten the curve. And so we are asked to essentially stop our lives to save others’.

While you’re practicing social distancing, you will likely find yourself in need of some information, entertainment, comfort, or all three. So, we put together a list of podcasts to get you…

It’s what dreams are made of.

(New here? Start with a recap of episode 1.)

Another episode, another morning.

We start episode three with a trip into the psyche. The boys are waking up, and Travis wants to know what they dreamed. This gives me the perfect opportunity to talk about this campaign’s prompts. Namely, Travis has been giving the boys lots of opportunities to talk about what their characters dream and eat. These are not traditionally interesting topics, but I’d like to make the case for their merit.

I’m a sucker for lack of plot. Sure, fights and mysteries are exciting, but there’s something to…

No accounting for taste, or no taste for accounting?

(New here? Start with a recap of episode 1.)

The second episode of The Adventure Zone: Graduation opens with a re-introduction to every character we met last episode, and holy buckets, it’s a lot — 16 to be exact. I have a decent memory of most of them (Rainer the kind villain, Rhodes the self-important hero, Higgelmiss the mysterious headmaster), but I’m looking forward to learning more about the many the NPCs who populate this world. …

Let’s get oriented!

Hail and well met! Welcome to the first edition of TAZmaniac, a series of episode recaps for The Adventure Zone: Graduation.

If you’re new to the McElroy family of products, here’s a quick refresher: The McElroy brothers (Griffin, Travis, Justin) got into podcasting with their comedy advice show, My Brother, My Brother, and Me (MBMBaM), which they launched in 2010. Since then, they’ve become a veritable podcast dynasty, with thirteen podcasts among them and their kin, including The Adventure Zone (TAZ).

Image: Noxbatty

TAZ started as a one-off episode released in the MBMBaM feed. But thanks to the family’s storytelling chops and…

Bello Collective newsletter — March 13, 2019

Dear Bellos,

In addition to editing the Bello Collective, I, like many of you, also have a day job in the audio industry. My work involves thinking about how to find new listeners for my favorite podcasts, and I’m very lucky that something I’m so invested in personally can also provide my livelihood.

But over in the Bello Slack this week, we were talking about the dangers of turning hobbies into hustles, and how significant it can be to lose something that “enrich[es] your life without any expectation that it will help you pay the rent,” as Molly Conway wrote…

On Air Fest looks outside the podcast world to highlight the artistry of audio.

There are a lot of ways to frame a podcast conference or festival. Some are constructed around legacy media, with an emphasis on journalism. Others are constructed around indie media, with an emphasis on fans and personalities. Some are about fiction, or non-fiction, or education. On Air Fest is built around sound.

“We hedge against calling a ‘podcast festival’ because we think we can transcend podcasts a little bit. We always think about it in terms of story, and creativity, and people, and big ideas with a heavy emphasis on audio storytelling,” Scott Newman, creator of On Air Fest and…

Galen Beebe

Editor at the Bello Collective, co-founder of Etc. Gallery (, script editor of the podcast Writ Large.

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