There's nothing better than authors giving us insight into their own writing. Especially if they tell stories that are usually overlooked.
Local Human Rights medalist Yen Eriksen and author of No Country Woman Zoya Patel have released a new podcast, Margin Notes.
The six-part series that explores memoir through the lens of intersectionality; understanding issues through the lenses of race, gender, sexuality, disabilities and other forms of marginalisation and how they interact with each other.
Patel and Eriksen have previously collaborated on projects together, including the Read Like A Feminist book club series in Canberra.
The idea of collaborating together on a podcast floated for some time before Patel and Erikson got into a studio. The duo began recording and planning Margin Notes with their producer Kim Lester in early 2019.
The COVID-19 pandemic allowed Lester to finalise the editing of the podcast sooner than expected.
Patel said that releasing the podcast earlier than planned was 'prescient' timing due to the Black Lives Matter movement.
"It's been really interesting looking at the last month and how important it is to have these conversations about racial equality," Patel said.
The podcast is formatted to have a reading followed by a discussion about that reading later in the episode.
"When we do our book club events, one of the best parts is when the reading happens," Eriksen said.
"I just love when people read to me and perform ... the element of a writer using their own voice to express their own words in itself is a really luxurious experience."
"The podcast has a slightly different offering in that you're promised a story in the beginning and an opportunity to listen to someone read, but you're also promised insight into a personal conversation."
"The first episode looks at the representation of people of colour in pop culture, [I read a piece] that I accidentally forgot to put in my book," Patel said
"The next [episode] features a story by Yen that is about a lot of things but primarily about food and our connection to culture through food."
The last episode of the series is the first to feature a guest artist, with writer Naomi Barnbaum.
The duo aim to secure more funding to pay and platform more guests in their next season.
Patel and Eriksen said they aimed to make the podcast both in depth but also accessible to people who do not know about intersectionality.
"The whole point of this podcast is to give you a really clear insight into what life is like when you do live in the margins, when you are a part of multiple marginalised groups as both Yen and I are," Patel said.
"We don't want to ever make people feel bad for ignorance when they are coming from a good place."
New episodes of Margin notes will be released weekly each Tuesday. The podcast can be streamed online via Spotify and iTunes, or via marginnotes.libsyn.com/.