Tag Archives: Writing

Ophira Eisenberg: Writer, Comedian

The Moth, Ask Me Another, Ophira Eisenberg, comedy,

Ophira Eisenberg is a writer and comedian, originally from Canada, now living in New York City.

In university Ophira studied Anthropology and English at McGill, which some people call the “Harvard of the North.”

Today she makes her living as a writer, stand up comedian, NPR host and regular contributor to The Moth – the popular storytelling event, podcast and radio program.

Her writing has been featured in an anthology of great comedy, alongside that of Jerry Seinfeld, Chris Rock, Dennis Miller and Joan Rivers.

I was so happy to meet with Ophira, who was back in Toronto, where she hosted a sold out performance of The Moth. While in Toronto Ophira was staying at one of Toronto’s finest hotels, a long way from her days schlepping from one comedy club to another, hoping to find appreciative audiences.

We talk about everything from how she started with nothing in New York, the evolution of her stand up comedy, and the influence of the Moth’s storytelling techniques on her writing.

Show Notes
Ophira’s story “The Accident” on Youtube.
NPR’s “Ask Me Another” trivia show, hosted by Ophira.
Ophira’s book: “Screw Everyone: Sleeping My Way to Monogamy” at Amazon.

Ophira’s CDs on iTunes
Click to go to iTunes store

Ophira Eisenberg, podcast interview, as ir

As Is

Ophira Eisenberg, Podcast Interview, Bangs


Laurie Elliott: Writer, Comedian

Laurie Elliott, Comedy, interviews, total drama

Laurie Elliott is a three-time Canadian Comedy Award-winner.

She had a recurring role on Much Music’s highly rated series “Video on Trial,” CBC TV’s “The Red Green Show” (for which she received a Gemini nomination for Best Ensemble Cast) and “The Jon Dore Television Show” (The Comedy Network/IFC) where she also worked as a story editor.

Prior to her life in comedy Laurie was a competitive diver.

During our chat I theorize that the discipline Laurie learned as a competitive diver is, in part, the secret to her success in comedy.

“I’ve Had Some Disturbing Moments in the Sack”

These days her comedy often revolves around relationships and we discuss how her husband feels about being the target of her jokes. She says her parents don’t mind the
fact that she gets into sexual material, but she admits she tells them the naughty bits are “just made up jokes.”

Laurie also writes and does voice work on animated TV series, including Total Drama, Skatoony, Detentionaire. We discus the difference between writing stand-up comedy and TV show scripts.

Show Notes
Follow Laurie on Twitter @ThaFloatingHead
Total Drama on Wikipedia
Kitchener Waterloo Comedy Festival
Fugget About It on Wikipedia

Jesse Brown: Canadaland Founder

This is a special episode recorded at Podcamp Toronto 2015, at the Rogers Com­mu­ni­ca­tions Cen­tre at Ryer­son Uni­ver­sity.

Jesse Brown is the founder of the podcast and website “”Canadaland” which generates over $200,000 annually on Patreon.

Jesse Brown, Podcast, Canadaland, podcamp

Jesse shares the details about how he launched Canadaland, secured a sponsor and produces each episode.

He also discusses how he navigates the fine line between soliciting listener donations while also running ads. Each episode of the podcast has at least two advertisements, as well as a call to action soliciting contributions.

I hadn’t planned on recording our chat, and by the time I thought of it the only memory card I had available was filled with family photos, so I didn’t record the entire interview.

The Podcamp 2015 schedule was loaded with interesting talks on a variety of subjects including, podcasting, digital marketing, design, social media and more.
Canadaland is Canada’s most listened to podcast (iTunes chart).

My highlights from Podcamp 2015
In random order

1 – Brian Cugelman, from AfterSpark, spoke about building websites and mobile apps that can change people’s behavior.
Follow Brian @cugelman

2- Martin Waxman.

Martin waxman, podcamp, Inside PR podcast, Certificate in Digital Strategy and Communications Management

Martin Waxman

Martin hosted a great discussion about the changing state of digital education, asking
are academic isntitutions able to keep up with the rapidly changing world of digital trends?
Martin Waxman is a social media, content marketing and communications strategist.
He is a regular on the podcast “Inside Pr.
Follow Martin @martinwaxman

3- Anthony Marco and Bob Goyetche
Their talk focused on every­thing you always wanted to know about starting a podcast.
Anthony publishes a bunch of podcasts including “The Marshall McLuhan Variety Hour” but is probably best know for his “beverage updates” on the podcast “TV eh?” which is all about Canadian television.
Follow Anthony @anthonymarco

Bob Goyetche, who spoke alongside Anthony, has been credited with helping create and develop the Canadian podcast community, he started podcasting in 2004.
Follow Bob @bobgoyetche

Here is an audio recording & images from their presentation “The Session at Podcamp That’s About Podcasting.

4- Corey Coates
Corey owns a business, Podfly, that produces podcasts & audio content for a variety of clients.
Corey’s session was all about using Adobe Audition for editing and more importantly – audio processing and clean up.
He demonstrated how to clean up bad sound recorded on Skype, which was very helpful for people like me, who care about audio quality.
Follow Corey @CoreyRyanCoates

5- Jeremy Taggart
Jeremy is a drummer, best known for playing with the band “Our Lady Peace” from 1993 until 2014.
These days he’s half of the dynamic podcasting duo “Taggart and Torrens.” Their podcast ranked
#4 on iTunes list of top podcasts in Canada.
Follow Taggart and Torrens @TAGGARTnTORRENS

6- Peter West
Peter’s presented “101 tips For Radically Better Photos.”
I didn’t get to attend his session but it was packed, and I heard from a few people that Peter was the best presenter at Podcamp.
Peter has published his list of 101 photography tips and he also offers a free “Photography 101” course suitable for photographers using iPhones, other smart phones and DSLRs, etc.
Peter’s tips come from years travelling the world with a variety of cameras & lenses.
Follow Peter @peterwest

Show Notes
Jesse mentions he was working on the animated film: 500 Pound Planet
FreshBooks – Jesse’s first sponsor
Mesh Conference
Squarespace unveils $40 million online marketing campaign‏
Libsyn – podcast hosting services

Here’s the radio editing software Andrew Norton, that the producer at Canadaland, uses Hindenberg.
Audio Highjack Pro is what he uses to grab all the audio from a variety of online sources.

As well as working in Radio I was a founding producer on CTV’s “Open Mike with Mike Bullard.” These days Mike’s on CFRB radio. Here’s my podcast interview with Bullard, discussing how he coped with his show being cancelled (he didn’t leave the house for 3 years) and how he got a job on radio.

Photos courtesy Peter West