The story podcast The Valley of Forever has a new episode up! Yesterday I posted Episode 10, which is titled “Twice Upon a Time in the West.” It’s been two weeks since the last episode, but I’ve been keeping to my release schedule so far. If you’re already subscribed on your favorite podcast platform you might already have heard it, but here are the links to the various ways to get it: Podomatic, iTunes, Google Play, TuneIn.com, and Stitcher.
As its name suggests, Episode 10 takes us far back into the past. Marcus, the narrator, has begun to describe what he read in the mysterious manuscript of the traveler he met in Mexico in 1994, a young (or young-looking) man named Dale. As he relates Dale’s story, written down in a manuscript called The Valley of Forever, it becomes clear that Dale is much older than he seems. He (Dale) describes growing up in Texas in the middle of the 19th century, his harrowing experiences in the Civil War, and his survival of a famous disaster in 1865 aboard the riverboat Sultana. Dale’s backstory will prove crucial for the rest of the podcast, which makes Episode 10 one of the most important installments of the show so far.
Production-wise, this episode presented a particular challenge. The sound montage at the opening depicts, in audio form, the Sultana disaster, which really happened; the account of it in the book is pretty accurate. (The graphic for this episode is a real photo of the ship). Compiling this effect from public-domain audio clips was quite a challenge, and I rank it on part with the “gladiator” effect at the beginning of Episode 4 as one of the bits I’m most proud of. Musically we have a new theme by George Kay, that being an acoustic musical signature for the character of Dale, who is arguably The Valley of Forever‘s most prominent character.
Please keep spreading the word about The Valley of Forever. It’s slowly gaining a following, and as the story develops, a lot of fascinating possibilities lie ahead!