As promised, this season on Show Your Work, we’ll be highlighting the work of people we admire, people who are doing great work. It’s our honour to feature on this week’s new episode the work of Helen Zaltzman. Helen is the host of The Allusionist and Answer Me This! podcasts. She’s an OG podcaster. At the British Podcast Awards earlier this year, she was named Podcast Champion and The Allusionist won the Smartest Podcast Award for 2018. 

Duana and I met up with Helen recently in Toronto, while she was on tour, to talk about the work that goes into building a career – a brand new career. Not too long ago, podcasting wasn’t a thing. Being a podcaster wasn’t a job. How do you go from a job that didn’t exist to being the Podcast Champion? What are the risks and challenges? What were her biggest decisions? And, now that she is an established name at a time when podcasting is THE media of the moment, what are her responsibilities both to her own audience and to the upcoming class of podcasters? Our conversation ranges from where Helen works to the technology behind her work – and sometimes working without technology – to the financial realities of her work. 

And, of course, we find time to gossip. Because, as established, Helen is smart. Which means she knows celebrity gossip. She does not discount celebrity gossip. So we get her thoughts on the gossip and her favourite celebrity portmanteaus. 

If you are familiar with Helen and her work, you don’t need us to tell you how awesome she is – thoughtful, kind, bright, and funny. If you are not familiar with Helen’s work, you’re about to meet and learn from a trailblazer, a woman who created a career out of her own personal passions, someone who, as we’ve talked about often on Show Your Work, made work out of “niche”, whose work is both universal and specific.  

Please note: we had an audio issue that only lasts about 10 minutes near the beginning of the show. Sorry for any inconvenience and thanks for your patience. We address it quickly, promise, and it’s not a problem for most of the podcast. 

Thank you so much to Helen for spending time with us when her schedule is already so full. She gave us so much insight and we hope that you will take away as much as we did from what she shared. 

As always, we appreciate your support of Show Your Work. Thanks for listening and for telling us about your work, about your goals, about your obstacles, about your wins. Please subscribe to Show Your Work on iTunes and Spotify and message us about work on Twitter @laineygossip and @duanaelise or on Instagram @laineygossip and @duanataha