Creating a Podcast: Equipment, Resources, and Lessons Learned

Posted on July 11, 2017

Since it wasn’t clear whether or not Library Bytegeist would continue after the end of Molly’s fellowship at METRO, the entire process of creating the podcast was as DIY and iterative as possible.

Here are the basics:

Recording Equipment

Editing Software

We went with Reaper because it is really inexpensive for non-profits (only $60 for a license), but it has much more sophisticated functionality than free software like Audacity. Reaper is a great open source alternative to Pro Tools, and there are excellent community-created tutorials.

Transcription services

Transcribe helps you create transcriptions quickly by hand like Molly does, or using decent an automated speech-to-text tool. Transcriptions are time-consuming but essential for accessibility, discoverability, and editing!

Distribution / hosting

SoundCloud RSS feed, which we also submit to the iTunes store, Stitcher, and blubrry.


It is important to consider how you will collect data about how people download and listen to your podcast. By creating a Podtrac account from the beginning, you can add a string to the link where you post your podcast and get numbers about how many people download it on which platforms. Getting detailed metrics on how people listen to podcasts has been historically difficult because it’s impossible to know whether people listen to the track after they download it, and for how long, but Apple just made an important announcement that it will give podcast creators access to more detailed analytics. So things are changing!

Molly is no graphic designer, but necessity spurs invention. She designed the logo using Canva with icons from the Noun Project.

Education / Resources

Luckily audio / radio production is a really welcoming field, so the radio greats have been sharing their secrets for years! There are also super helpful networks of independent audio producers, many of whom are happy to share their experiences and help audio newbies out. Here are some resources Molly found helpful in the production of Library Bytegeist:

Online resources: websites / networks / festivals


Classes (in the NYC area and beyond)

Lessons learned

Be prepared to learn as you go along! We have experimented with length, style, and sound design. Molly has made every mistake in the books: recording distorted tracks, losing files, editing every speaker on a single track, not using compression … but it’s okay! The most important thing is the content. Everything else is just gravy. Also maybe don’t make the name of your podcast a double pun that is difficult to spell …

Read our retrospective of Library Bytegeist