Jacinta Tynan, author and founder of The Spiritual Book Club, shares her story about interviewing Dr Deepak Chopra for her new online book club.
Securing an interview with Dr. Deepak Chopra, that was the easy part.
Working out the tech to record the interview, not so much.
When I founded The Spiritual Book Club a few months ago – on-camera interviews with powerful spiritual teachers and authors and chats about inspirational books – naturally I had Deepak Chopra on my wish list.
He is, after all, a pioneer in personal transformation and consciousness, author of 93 spiritual books and was anointed by Time Magazine as ‘one of the top 100 heroes and icons of the century’.
He gets his fair share of interview requests.
But after three decades as a TV journalist and the author of five books, I have never been afraid to ask. The worst that can happen is they decline. Which can be frustrating, sure. But ascribing to teachings of spiritual leaders like Deepak Chopra himself, I do believe if something is meant for you it won’t pass you by.
So here I was with a locked in interview with Dr. Deepak Chopra. For many, that might have been the greatest challenge.
Yet I was panicking about tech.
I have always struggled with tech. I call myself a ‘tech luddite’. Often. (Which, if you pay heed to the doctrine that our thoughts create our reality, might be part of the problem).
I started my career as a journalist pre-internet and pre-mobile phone. This carbon dates me. For Gen-Xers like me, tech and creative output has only become a thing in our adult lifetimes.
For the first decade or so of my career as a reporter and news presenter, once I secured an interview, all I had to worry about was asking the questions. (And doing the research and writing the copy, of course. You know, the straightforward stuff). There was a camera crew and often a sound recordist responsible for getting the interview ‘on tape’. In the studio, we had robotic cameras putting the news to air live and an autocue for which I rolled the pedal.
Now that I’ve started my own business, the tech is on me. It takes up so much more of my brain capacity and I realise how easy I had it in the old days.
For my first interview for The Spiritual Book Club – with equally impressive spiritual author Gabby Bernstein – I hired someone to record the interview, such was my fear of stuffing it up.
I did the next few sessions on Zoom. That I can handle after it being our default comms portal during Covid lockdowns. (Still, I did hire a virtual assistant (VA) to moderate my first Zoom interview should anything go awry).
For Deepak, I called in the big guns.
I decided to use Riverside.fm – the predominant format for many of the podcasts I’ve been a guest on. It has uncompressed crystal clear audio (I had to look that up) and high-quality video too.
I signed up to Riverside.fm and watched tutorials on how to use it. I did a test run with a friend two days before and, as we were chatting, we were drowned out by static. I couldn’t work out where it was coming from so I contacted tech support who suggested it was the microphone. Only I didn’t have a mic connected. So they suggested I try that.
Backstory: I had bought a mic especially (Rode mini – recommended by a podcast host) but the dude at JB Hifi forgot to mention I needed an adapter for my MacBook Pro so I couldn’t use it.
One day before my Deepak interview, I raced to JB Hifi to buy said USB-C adapter and headphones. On the way home a friend called to discuss the Q&A I was hosting for her book launch the next night. (Microphone supplied; I could just focus on the questions).
When I mentioned the disaster I was trying to avert, she offered me the use of her home studio for her female empowerment business, Powerful Steps, with her ready-to-go Riverside.fm account.
That certainly took the pressure off. The only downside was that the screen had her name on it – not mine – which may have confused Deepak somewhat. But then again, as he said in the interview, all of our concerns exist only in our imagination.
After our chat, it was Deepak Chopra not me who reminded me to stick around to download it. He’s more tech savvy than me, clearly.
But then, true to form, I accidentally cut it short by pressing the wrong button, ending the call without even saying goodbye. Blessedly, the interview was saved.
I could learn to edit it myself and maybe one day I will. But for this one, I’ll enlist a VA. That’s enough tech trepidation for one interview
I just want to focus on getting Deepak’s powerful words out into the world.
That’s what all this is for, after all.
You can join The Spiritual Book Club here: https://www.thespiritualbookclub.com/