Listening With My Eyes Open

Ever since I was a young girl I’ve had a fascination with talk radio. I have always been intrigued by the idea of hosting my own call-in show. My two brothers and I recorded several cassette tapes worth of original talk radio programming when we were young, bored, and stuck inside on many a rainy day. A love of all things talk radio followed me into adulthood. While I greatly enjoy working at the library, I choose to live vicariously through fictional radio personalities. Here are some stories worth checking out.

Growing up in the Midwest, Frasier granted me my first glimpse into life in Seattle—even if it was completely fictitious. At the time, though, I didn’t know I’d ever see the real Seattle, let alone live in its backyard. I was more concerned with Dr. Frasier Crane and how he conducted his call-in show. How difficult was it to psychoanalyze callers with just a brief introduction to their problems?

NewsRadio had everything: good writing, great comedic timing, amazing actors and an awesome set. When I was trying to picture what working in talk radio would be like, I was imagining something along the lines of the WNYX office. Absurd happenings and dysfunctional office relationships were common occurrences in this busy New York City news radio station. I still pop these DVDs in from time to time when I want a guaranteed laugh.

Mary Kennedy’s Talk Radio Mystery series follows Maggie Walsh, a psychiatrist who left her Manhattan clinical practice to take a job as host of her own radio show, On the Couch with Maggie Walsh, in Cypress Grove, Florida. So far there are three books in this series: Dead Air, Reel Murder, and Stay Tuned for Murder. In each book Maggie is involved in solving a murder or two, all while keeping things running at the radio station. Be sure to read them in order, as the characters change and grow over the course of the titles. Fans of cozy mysteries will relish this lighthearted series.


I enjoy podcasts as much as the next person, especially the ones the library has to offer. But I still like to curl up with a good talk radio story, whether it be on DVD or in a book, and imagine what might have been if only I’d gone to broadcasting school.


2 thoughts on “Listening With My Eyes Open

  1. I bet your taped talk shows with your brothers would fun to listen to now as adults…and how accurate did you find the Frasier show? He didn’t pronounce Lake Chelan correctly, he called it Chelane.


  2. I think all the local names went right over my head! As a young girl from the Midwest I was raised to say “Spoe-CANE” instead of how we all know “Spokane” is really pronounced. So I wouldn’t be a good judge even if I could remember! My talk shows I made with my brothers were so stupid but so much fun. If I can find a way to get the cassettes recorded digitally I’ll be one happy woman.


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