[Abridged] Presidential Histories

0.) Introduction

March 29, 2020 Kenny RYAN
[Abridged] Presidential Histories
0.) Introduction
Chapters
[Abridged] Presidential Histories
0.) Introduction
Mar 29, 2020
Kenny RYAN

What can listeners expect from the [Abridged] Presidential Histories podcast? What was the inspiration? And who's hosting it? This brief introduction answers those basic questions.
If you don't care about any of that and just want to get to the presidential history, skip ahead to episode 1 on George Washington!

https://www.patreon.com/AbridgedPresidentialHistories

Support the show (https://www.patreon.com/AbridgedPresidentialHistories)

Show Notes Transcript

What can listeners expect from the [Abridged] Presidential Histories podcast? What was the inspiration? And who's hosting it? This brief introduction answers those basic questions.
If you don't care about any of that and just want to get to the presidential history, skip ahead to episode 1 on George Washington!

https://www.patreon.com/AbridgedPresidentialHistories

Support the show (https://www.patreon.com/AbridgedPresidentialHistories)

Welcome to Abridged Presidential Histories with Kenny Ryan. I’m your host, Kenny Ryan. And this is episode 0 - my introductory episode. In this episode, I’m going to share what inspired this podcast, what you can expect from it, and a little about who I am. If you don’t care about any of that and just want to dive into presidential history, I can’t blame you! Go ahead, skip this episode, and tune in to episode 1 on George Washington. I won’t hold it against you.

For those of you who are still here, let’s get to all that stuff I just said I’d talk about.

First, what inspired the Abridged Presidential Histories podcast? One day I was hanging out with a friend and, because I’m really good at making conversation, I challenged them to name every American president, in order, and three things that each president should be known for. We got off to a decent start – George Washington, John Adams, Thomas Jefferson – then it’s Madison after that, right? We were able to at least name most of the presidents, but there were quite a few we knew nothing about.

o   That inspired me to do two things. First, read a biography on every American president. Second, create this podcast.

o   So what can you expect from this podcast? 

o   This is the abridged presidential histories, as in, not super long. So I’ll try to keep it abridged. My goal is for each episode to be between 30 and 60 minutes in length, though I wouldn’t be surprised if one or two goes longer – like FDR, the guy was elected four times. There’s lot’s to talk about there.

o   In every episode, I will look for the most interesting and insightful moments from each president’s life before, during, and after their presidencies. For example, did you know young George Washington had a knack for running battlefields like an action hero and kinda totally accidentally started the first global war? That’s crazy! Let’s talk about it.

§  I’ll also take a look around the country and the world at the start and end of each presidency to help place these guys in the larger historical narrative. Like, at the start of Washington’s administration, there’s a king on the throne of France, but at the end of Washington’s administration, the French revolution is swingin’ and the king has lost his head.

§  I’ll also do fun things call out my favorite inventions made during each administration, like the invention of the steamboat in 1807 or the invention of the cupcake in 1796. I think we all know which of those is a bigger deal.

§  I’ll close each episode by trying to find lessons in each president’s experiences. Why were they successful? Or why did they fail? What can we learn from them?

o   So that’s the content plan. To put this together, I will

§  Read one biography on every president. I will pick these biographies through a combination of book reviews, where I’ll lean quite heavily on the totally unaffiliated but totally awesome website bestpresidentialbios.com – I encourage any of you who are interested in presidential history to check it out – and my book selection will also be influenced by what’s available at my public library or for sale online. 

§  As I read, I’ll take copious notes about whatever I find interesting. 

§  After I’m done reading, I’ll go through my notes and write a first draft what stands out as most interesting. To help fill in any gaps that pop up, I’ll refer to the President’s Fact Book, by Roger Matuz, Britannica, or any other reputable resource I can find if those don’t do the trick. 

§  Most presidents get mentioned in each other’s biographies, so with this approach, I’ll probably end up with 3-5 sources on each president. Every time I read a new biography, I’ll revisit past scripts with new insights until past presidents stop getting mentioned any more, and then it will be time to record, edit, and publish that president’s episode.

o   As I start this, I’ve already read through our eighth president,  Martin Van Buren, also known as the little magician, and I have scripts in some state of readiness for the first four presidents. I’m going to try to pace my releases so I never catch up to my reading, so the pace of releases may vary.

o   That’s the plan! Read a ton of biographies, do a lot of writing, do a lot of cutting, record, edit, publish! And hopefully bask in the warm adulations of your 5-star reviews.

·      And who am I? My name is Kenny Ryan, and I’m the guy attempting this plan.

o   I’m a former journalist turned marketing professional who grew up in Texas and now lives in the Pacific northwest

o   And I absolutely love history

o   I love history so much that I accidentally earned a history minor in college. I basically kept taking cool-looking history classes to pad my schedule until one day it was time to graduate and I was told I’d earned a minor. Cool.

o   That does NOT make me a historian. This isn’t a work of scholarship. There’s no original research. I’m just a story teller who loves this stuff and I hope to share a bit of that passion with you.

·      I hope that answered any basic questions you have about the Abridged Presidential Histories and has you ready to go. If you’re curious how you can support the podcast, you can do so at www.patreon.com/AbridgedPresidentialHistories. That’s www.patreon.com/AbridgedPresidentialHistories. The goal of this podcast isn’t to raise money, but any donations will be spent on my podcast hosting service, books, equipment, music, etc. 

·      Thank you for listening. Enjoy the show, and please leave a 5-star review on your platform of choice if you enjoy the program.