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11.17.14: Aasif Mandvi & No Plot? No Problem! Writing A Book In 30 Days

92Y Tribeca via flickr Creative Commons

Since his debut on The Daily Show, Aasif Mandvi has held such titles as “Senior Muslim Correspondent”, “Senior Middle East Correspondent” and “Senior Foreign Looking correspondent”. On today’s show, Aasif Mandvi tells us why he almost didn't take the job.

Plus, between Thanksgiving, holiday preparation, and dealing with a general lack of sunlight, the month of November can be overwhelming, but one writer is making the case that it’s a great month to finally write that novel you’ve been talking about.

Listen to the full show and click Read more for individual segments.

Aasif Mandvi: No Land's Man

  • It was never Aasif Mandvi’s goal to be a muck-raking “gotcha” journalist. Funny fake reporter is just one of the many roles he’s taken on as an actor. But then Mandvi had a number of identities thrust on him since he moved from India to England, and then to Florida as a high school junior. He writes about many of them in a new collection of essays called No Land’s Man.
  • We've got clips and more at this link.

11.17.14: Aasif Mandvi & No Plot? No Problem! Writing A Book In 30 Days


  • When a city or a town is growing, commercial development is bound to be a driver. For people who’ve deep roots in a place, it can be difficult to stand in the way of what many others see as progress – especially if you’re being offered lots of money to get out of the way.  Roman Mars and Katie Mingle of 99% Invisible bring us this story of one legendary development holdout.
  • You can listen to this episode at: 99% Invisible

No Plot? No Problem!

  • Chris Baty is a teacher, speaker, and writer and he’s the founder of NaNoWriMo, National Novel Writing Month. He has an updated edition of the book he wrote in 2004 to help writers finally take the plunge, it’s called No Plot? No Problem!
No Plot? No Problem!

Is Radio Drama Making A Comeback?

  • In the UK, it's like it never left. Caitlin Benedict is the radio drama columnist for Exeunt magazine and a podcast producer. She’s based in London where the radio drama still has a foothold on traditional radio airwaves.
  • Part one of her series on Radio Dramas: Radio Days
  • Part two of her series: Radio Waves
  • We weren't able to include all of Caitlin's recommendations in the interview, but here are some links for you to check out.
Is Radio Drama Making a Comeback?

  1. Home Front: "The ongoing WWI drama has the honour of being the largest ever drama serial, and will eventually clock in at almost six hundred episodes across the centenary of the conflict. The series is a (very) slowly-unfolding fictionalised history of life in Britain during the war, with each episode broadcast a hundred years to the day from the history it dramatises."
  2. Welcome to Night Vale: "After over two years, the narrative remains engaging and the range of characters that demand your emotional investment is masterful from a show that relies overwhelmingly on a single-voice format."
  3. Drama on 3: "Drama on 3 has the sort of space and audience that allows for radio drama with more weight to it, more philosophy and more meaningful silence."

We also found this charming conversation with David Tennant and Kenneth Branagh about why they love performing in radio dramas:

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