Sometimes you have to do things you’re scared to do. Sometimes you have to take risks and challenge yourself to try something out of your comfort zone. Or sometimes you have an idea and think, “Yeah, I might could do that.”
That’s why I wanted to start a podcast.
Well, that’s part of why I wanted to start a podcast. There’s a little more to it than that. To be honest, I wanted and needed yet another side project, and learning something completely new from scratch seemed like a good idea.
I’ve always been a better writer than speaker. That’s largely why I opted for a blog six-ish years ago instead of another platform. Video has never been my thing, either; I chock that up to having little patience for editing. That half-semester video production course I took in grad school was my nightmare. But I digress.
In the latter half of 2017, I started thinking a lot about what my “next big steps” for the blog would be, especially in early 2018. My friend William and I had wrapped up our week-long Restaurant Week show on Instagram, and I’d made friends with a couple people who run podcasts in town. And you know what they say—the more time you spend with someone, the more their qualities, interests and quirks rub off on you.
So it would hardly seem like a surprise that, the more I hung out with podcast guys, the more I started to think that maybe I could pull off a podcast myself. The Nooga Belle Show was officially concepted and born shortly thereafter…because I clearly needed yet another side project.
So… why the “Nooga Belle”?
I call myself a Southern sweetheart or Southern belle. I like to think I live up to that character, and I wanted that to come across in my podcast. But a “Southern belle” podcast seemed too general. I wanted something that would stand out among the rest.
When I first told my closest friends I was planning my podcast, one of the most common questions I got was, “So, how many new recipes will I learn from your show?” I laughed along, but in all seriousness, I wasn’t sure I wanted to share recipes on my show. Recipe content is inherently more visual in nature, so I didn’t think a podcast was the best platform for showcasing those. But I’m a foodie; there would surely be some kind of food aspect to this project.
My brain started spinning in all kinds of directions. Southern belle… Chattanooga… Nooga… Foodie… Southern storytelling… okay, now we’re getting somewhere…
Everyone has a story to tell. Some people have lots of stories to tell. I love hearing other people’s stories and how they got to where they are. As any good writer would say, I like telling my own stories, even if not through the written word. And, as much as I like to write, other people like to talk.
Somewhere in all of that, I landed on The Nooga Belle Podcast—all about stories of the South, straight from the sources. I want the Nooga Belle Podcast to be the place and platform where people from all walks of life can tell their stories, and where they want to tell their stories. In Chattanooga alone, there are so many people I can’t wait to get on my show and hear what they have to say—fellow foodies, restauranteurs, dear friends, community leaders, business owners and more.
A huge huge shoutout and thank-you to everyone who’s been along for the ride. Whether you’ve offered me advice and guidance, helped me record an episode, brainstormed with me, listened to my beta episodes (or my nervous freakouts) or anything in between, I couldn’t have done it without y’all.
An extra special shoutout to my coworker and dear friend Jess for creating my logo and branding. Seriously y’all, she’s magical.
I’m super stoked about my podcast and can’t wait to see where it goes. Please give it a listen; you can find it on Podbean for now. Coming soon to iTunes and Stitcher—I’ll share updates when it’s live and available on other streaming platforms.
Let’s see where this little venture takes me.
Y’all can read more about how my podcast came to be in this Medium post.