An important part of producing audio drama is figuring out how to pay for it. Every audio drama producer we speak with is talking about how to (or whether to) make money from the productions that we put so much work into. As we talk to more and more people who are making modern audio drama there are a lot of different ideas, trials, errors and successes that are being discussed. In an attempt to learn more about the methods that people are using to generate or recoup funds, we rounded up a few producers to talk about the relationship between money and audio drama. We hope that sharing their experiences will be instructional for everyone facing the same challenges. This week we have KC Wayland of Wayland Productions sharing his experiences with us. KC is one of the creators and producers of We’re Alive, an action-packed, edge-of-your-seat series that puts a whole new spin on the zombie genre. We’re Alive.
We’re Alive is one of the most widely distributed modern audio drama and has won the 2010 Silver Ogle and 2009 Gold Ogle Awards and 4th Annual Dead Letter Award. It was named Best of 2012 in the iTunes Arts category and was nominated Best Speculative Fiction Audio Drama Long Form for four consecutive years.
Born in Orange CA, Kc Wayland attended Orange High School Media Arts program for both Acting and Film theory and production and graduated with the Principle’s Medallion. Kc won several awards while in the school’s media arts program including the Award of Excellence in Arts and Best Student Editor (KOCE Media Festival) in 2001. In this program Kc also worked as a cinematographer on a video poem titled Blue Doll, a short that went to play at Sundance Film Festival in 2001. He was also involved in drama, starring in several stage performances such as the Music Man (as the lead Harold Hill), and also Hannibal in The Curious Savage. During high school, Kc graduated with top honors in three animation field classes from CCROP and went to work developing special effects on several short films including Return to Innsmouth. In 2001 he was awarded an Academic scholarship and started attending Chapman University’s Film Program. There he continued to produce several short films including Love Lost, The Creature, Where Dolls Lie, Butterfly, and several others. In January of 2002, shortly after 9-11, Casey enlisted in the US ARMY. He took a leave of absence from Chapman and was sent to boot camp in Fort Jackson, South Carolina, and then to train at the Defense Information School in Fort Meade Maryland. He received two certifications in broadcast engineering and was awarded both Top Graduate and Distinguished Honor Graduate. In 2003 Kc returned to Chapman University to continue his degree, but was deployed to Iraq midway through his first semester. Kc spent over a year being deployed with the 222nd Broadcast Operations Detachment. He was nominated for a Bronze Star for meritorious service while stationed in the heart of Baghdad. He returned back to Chapman University in 2005 and went on to complete a documentary about his journeys overseas entitled 365 Boots on Ground. This feature length documentary went onto win Best Documentary at Chapman University 2005, Best Student Doc in the Bear Bear Film Festival, and Best Student Film at the Tiberon International Film festival. Kc continued to work and develop more shorts and scripts during his enrollment. Before graduating he worked as an editor and associate producer for another feature length documentary, Eastern State – Living Behind the Walls. His graduating thesis culminated with an 18 minute long self-animated short entitled Sopor that took over a year and a half to produce. He graduated in May of 2008 with the Cheverton Award (Valedictorian). Shortly after, Kc received a designated subjects credential and began teaching at Costa Mesa High School’s ROP program and also at OCHSA. After completing a year of instruction he received a full time staff position at Dodge College of Film and Media arts, where he currently works as the Digital Applications Specialist. In his time away from work he continues to write, produce, edit, and direct the award winning audio drama serial, We’re Alive.
*The views expressed in the following interview are that of the person doing the speaking. It’s not our fault if you don’t like what he or she is saying. If you want to get passive-aggressively confrontational with a computer screen about the contents of this interview please try to remember that you are also exercising the right to express your views in a public forum. Don’t be that person.
**The masculinized title of this series is not meant to imply that there are no other-gendered audio content producers, providers or listeners.