If you’re struggling to come up with a story idea, or your pitches keep bombing, and you live in the U.S., this tip is for you.
National Public Radio has a new feature called “This I Believe,” a national project that invites you to write about your core beliefs. The personal statements from listeners air each Monday on “Morning Edition” and “All Things Considered.”
Is this great publicity or what?
By inviting Americans from all walks of life to participate, series producers Dan Gediman and Jay Allison hope to create a picture of the American spirit in all its rich complexity.
“This I Believe” is based on a 1950s radio program of the same name, hosted by acclaimed journalist Edward R. Murrow. In spite of the fear of atomic warfare, increasing consumerism and loss of spiritual values, the essayists on Murrow’s series expressed tremendous hope.
Each day, millions of Americans gathered by their radios to hear compelling essays from the likes of Eleanor Roosevelt, Jackie Robinson, Helen Keller and Harry Truman as well as corporate leaders, cab drivers, scientists and secretaries–anyone able to distill into a few minutes the guiding principles by which they lived. Their words brought comfort and inspiration to a country worried about the Cold War, McCarthyism and racial division.
Allison and Gediman say their goal is not to persuade Americans to agree on the same beliefs. Rather, they hope to encourage people to begin the much more difficult task of developing respect for beliefs different from their own.
“We hear a country moving toward more equality among the races and between genders,” says Gediman. “We hear parents writing essays that are letters to their newborn children expressing the hopes and dreams they have for them. And we hear the stories of faith that guide people in their daily experiences.”
Thanks to Publicity Hound Leslie Paladino of Kregel Publications in Grand Rapids, Michigan, for alerting us to this great publicity op. You can submit an essay here.
Book publcist Lissa Warren says NPR’s producers, editors, reporters and hosts are always on the lookout for new stories, compelling guests and fresh ideas. But navigating the NPR labyrinth can be a nightmare if you don’t know what you’re doing. Lissa, who was my guest during a teleseminar called “How to Get Booked on National Public Radio,” has placed more than 100 of her clients on NPR shows and says the best place to start doing your research is at the NPR website to see which shows are the best fit for you.