46 episodes

A show designed to get you thinking about, talking about, and, most importantly, making art. Normally, creators of Welcome to Night Vale Jeffrey Cranor and Joseph Fink are the ones turning their ideas into stories. But for this podcast, it’s you who will do the writing, one short and simple assignment at a time. Because the best way to start writing is to start writing.

Start With This Night Vale Presents

    • Arts
    • 4.6 • 248 Ratings

A show designed to get you thinking about, talking about, and, most importantly, making art. Normally, creators of Welcome to Night Vale Jeffrey Cranor and Joseph Fink are the ones turning their ideas into stories. But for this podcast, it’s you who will do the writing, one short and simple assignment at a time. Because the best way to start writing is to start writing.

    Hooptedoodle

    Hooptedoodle

    Stop and describe the roses.

    CONSUME: Chapter 1 of John Steinbeck’s East of Eden

    CREATE: Write a 200 or so word description of your neighborhood. Give us a texture of the sights and the smells and the sounds. Remember that what you’re going for here is more poetry and language than storytelling. Write something real pretty. Now go to the Random Mood Generator (https://perchance.org/mood). Get a random mood. And write another 200 or so word description of your neighborhood, that in some way reflects that mood.

    Join the SWT Membership community to share your work, give feedback, and connect with other artists: https://www.patreon.com/startwiththis

    Help spread the word about our show by wearing our logo: https://topatoco.com/collections/startwiththisFollow us on Facebook and Twitter.

    Credits: Jeffrey Cranor (host) & Joseph Fink (host), Jeffrey Cranor (producer), Grant Stewart (editor), Vincent Cacchione (mixer). Rob Wilson (logo).

    Theme written and performed by Joseph Fink. If you'd like your own cover of the theme song featured on this show, email us at startwiththis@nightvalepresents.com or share it in our membership community.

    Produced by Night Vale Presents.

    http://www.startwiththispodcast.comhttp://www.nightvalepresents.com

    • 31 min
    Non-Lovecraftian Horror

    Non-Lovecraftian Horror

    There's so much more to horror, we couldn’t stop at Lovecraft.

    CONSUME: Watch any of the movies on Joseph’s horror movie recommendation list: https://twitter.com/PlanetofFinks/status/1311695218505379841?s=20

    CREATE: Think about an irrational fear you have of something real. This should not be a fear that is reasonable, but something like: fear of flying, fear of wasps, fear of the dark (these are all just fears Joseph has, I’m sure you have your own). Now instead of thinking about the source of that fear, think about your own feelings. What kinds of fears are activated by this phobia? Loss of control? Fear of the unknown? Fear of pain? Now write a 300-500 word story about that fear, but replace the focus of your fear (wasps, flying, etc.) with a supernatural entity. Could be a ghost or a zombie or a demon or an alien or whatever. But still, even though it’s now a supernatural story, try to recreate the exact feeling of fear your phobia gives you.

    Join the SWT Membership community to share your work, give feedback, and connect with other artists: https://www.patreon.com/startwiththis

    Help spread the word about our show by wearing our logo: https://topatoco.com/collections/startwiththisFollow us on Facebook and Twitter.

    Credits: Jeffrey Cranor (host) & Joseph Fink (host), Jeffrey Cranor (producer), Grant Stewart (editor), Vincent Cacchione (mixer). Rob Wilson (logo).

    Theme written and performed by Joseph Fink. If you'd like your own cover of the theme song featured on this show, email us at startwiththis@nightvalepresents.com or share it in our membership community.

    Produced by Night Vale Presents.

    http://www.startwiththispodcast.comhttp://www.nightvalepresents.com

    • 38 min
    Lovecraftian Horror

    Lovecraftian Horror

    Lovecraft was a racist and a bad writer, yet his ideas and his stories live on. So what do we do with them?

    CONSUME: “The Ballad of Black Tom” (novella) by Victor Lavalle, “Lovecraft Country” (tv series) on HBO, “The City We Became” (novel) by NK Jemisin

    CREATE: 1) Write 100-200 words about a hole that appears in the sky. Use this to explore fear of the unknown. When did the hole appear? What is it doing from our perspective? Don’t describe what’s in the hole or how it formed. Just describe how people react to its appearance. 2) Write 100-200 words about exactly what the hole is, and what it does. This second story can just be a sketch. Allow yourself to strip away all horror and just see the hole for exactly what it is.

    Join the SWT Membership community to share your work, give feedback, and connect with other artists: https://www.patreon.com/startwiththis

    Help spread the word about our show by wearing our logo: https://topatoco.com/collections/startwiththisFollow us on Facebook and Twitter.

    Credits: Jeffrey Cranor (host) & Joseph Fink (host), Jeffrey Cranor (producer), Grant Stewart (editor), Vincent Cacchione (mixer). Rob Wilson (logo).

    Theme written and performed by Joseph Fink. If you'd like your own cover of the theme song featured on this show, email us at startwiththis@nightvalepresents.com or share it in our membership community.

    Produced by Night Vale Presents.

    http://www.startwiththispodcast.comhttp://www.nightvalepresents.com

    • 40 min
    Agency

    Agency

    A character has a problem. As a result of that problem, they make a decision. As a result of that decision, they change.

    CONSUME: “Schitt’s Creek” on Netflix

    CREATE: Write a 200-word story about a super spy who has been incapacitated by a super villain. He’s chained to a conveyor belt on his way into an incinerator. Or locked inside a cage being lowered into the ocean. Then they make a decision based on their experience. Maybe it’s action, strength, wit, or intelligence. But they make a decision, and that decision has a consequence (they escape! They get injured! A bystander gets hurt!). And in the end, something significant has changed for them, and it’s because of that choice and the consequence.

    Join the SWT Membership community to share your work, give feedback, and connect with other artists: https://www.patreon.com/startwiththis

    Help spread the word about our show by wearing our logo: https://topatoco.com/collections/startwiththisFollow us on Facebook and Twitter.

    Credits: Jeffrey Cranor (host) & Joseph Fink (host), Jeffrey Cranor (producer), Grant Stewart (editor), Vincent Cacchione (mixer). Rob Wilson (logo).

    Theme written and performed by Joseph Fink. If you'd like your own cover of the theme song featured on this show, email us at startwiththis@nightvalepresents.com or share it in our membership community.

    Produced by Night Vale Presents.

    http://www.startwiththispodcast.comhttp://www.nightvalepresents.com

    • 38 min
    Exaggeration

    Exaggeration

    Fiction is a lie. Hopefully a good, fun lie.

    CONSUME: “Small Triumph Big Speech” podcast by Dylan Marron

    CREATE: Write a 200-word story about something mundane you did today (made toast, brushed your teeth, exercised for 30 minutes). But exaggerate the details. How did your toast change your day, your life, the world even? Put dramatic significance on your workout. What were you training for? Raise the stakes beyond just making a breakfast snack or personal health.

    Join the SWT Membership community to share your work, give feedback, and connect with other artists: https://www.patreon.com/startwiththis

    Help spread the word about our show by wearing our logo: https://topatoco.com/collections/startwiththisFollow us on Facebook and Twitter.

    Credits: Jeffrey Cranor (host) & Joseph Fink (host), Jeffrey Cranor (producer), Grant Stewart (editor), Vincent Cacchione (mixer). Rob Wilson (logo).

    Theme written and performed by Joseph Fink. If you'd like your own cover of the theme song featured on this show, email us at startwiththis@nightvalepresents.com or share it in our membership community.

    Produced by Night Vale Presents.

    http://www.startwiththispodcast.comhttp://www.nightvalepresents.com

    • 38 min
    Exposition

    Exposition

    What do you need to set the scene?

    CONSUME: "Anthropocene Reviewed" podcast by John Green

    CREATE: Write a 200 word story about a child. Give it a beginning, middle and an end. Something happened to this child. Maybe it was good. Maybe it was bad. But whatever it is clearly changes the child in the end of your story. Now write a 200-word story about that child as an adult. This adult is involved in a bank robbery. Maybe they’re the robber, or the cops, or a witness, or a get away driver, or a bank teller. Remember your first story when you write the second, but concentrate only on the bank robbery story.

    Join the SWT Membership community to share your work, give feedback, and connect with other artists: https://www.patreon.com/startwiththis

    Help spread the word about our show by wearing our logo: https://topatoco.com/collections/startwiththisFollow us on Facebook and Twitter.

    Credits: Jeffrey Cranor (host) & Joseph Fink (host), Jeffrey Cranor (producer), Grant Stewart (editor), Vincent Cacchione (mixer). Rob Wilson (logo).

    Theme written and performed by Joseph Fink. If you'd like your own cover of the theme song featured on this show, email us at startwiththis@nightvalepresents.com or share it in our membership community.

    Produced by Night Vale Presents.

    http://www.startwiththispodcast.comhttp://www.nightvalepresents.com

    • 41 min

Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5
248 Ratings

248 Ratings

stormyweather714 ,

Get ready

I finally listened. First one: 5 senses.
This is what I hoped this podcast would be.
Thank you for the ideas.
You guys are doing the world a service.

I am going to start writing.
Thanks

xpyxd ,

?

Explain

11Leonora1 ,

So helpful and inspiring!

I’ve loved Nightvale and Alice Isn’t Dead for ages. Getting writing insights from the geniuses behind those works has been insanely helpful. Every writer, podcaster and artist should listen!

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