Ta-dah: the new job.

book/daddy's new position -- the one that's been keeping him from blogging more consistently the past several weeks -- is "arts producer/reporter" for KERA, the NPR and PBS station for the Dallas-Fort Worth area. With a grant from arts patron Donna Wilhelm, KERA is doing something book/daddy has often argued is sorely needed from PBS and NPR, especially in this day of newspaper cutbacks: arts coverage, particularly arts coverage that is, to a large degree, locally based. And by arts coverage, book/daddy means not just a local talk show with a host who chats with touring authors or a music show that hosts area bands. Arts reporting, arts reviews, arts profiles -- the kind of journalism that only daily newspapers have done but are currently abandoning.

You can read the official press release here. KERA is using this grant to do something unusual -- establishing an "arts unit" that will combine web, radio and television coverage. In addition to weekly on-air book and theater and museum reviews, book/daddy has been posting at KERA's Arts + Culture blog, but Arts + Culture will soon be only one part of a new, multi-service arts site. Having checked around, looking for arts feature content on other NPR sites, we think KERA's arts unit, if it works as we hope, will be something exceptional. That's not so much a brag as it is a reflection on the current level of cultural discussion in America: We did not find a great deal in the way of useful, independent, locally-based, quality arts journalism, beyond newspaper websites and the aforementioned talk or music programs. Here's hoping we become a worthy model.

So: book/daddy is learning about broadcast production. Next up, web video training. If this all falls apart, at least he'll get some new skills out of it.

March 1, 2008 8:31 PM |



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Pat Barker, Frankenstein, Cass Sunstein on the internet, Samuel Johnson, Thrillers, Denis Johnson, Alan Furst, Caryl Phillips, Richard Flanagan, George Saunders, Michael Harvey, Larry McMurtry, Harry Potter and more ...


Big D between the sheets -- Dallas in fiction


Reviewing the state of reviewing


9/11 as a novel: Why?


How can critics say the things they do? And why does anyone pay attention? It's the issue of authority.

The disappearing book pages:  

Papers are cutting book coverage for little reason

Thrillers and Lists:  

Noir favorites, who makes the cut and why



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