Brooklyn Driediger talks about success, her podcast, some of her favourite places to go in Kelowna and tips for someone wanting to pursue a career in radio.
Q: Where were you born/currently live?
A: I was born and raised in Langley, BC! I was raised on a farm for the first ten years of my young life, and have managed to escape my small farm town for my career. In July of 2016, I made the quick decision to move to Kelowna and I’ve fallen in love with the Okanagan.
Q: How did you get into radio?
A: Well, I went to BCIT for two years after graduating high school. I enrolled into the Radio Arts and Entertainment program where we ran our campus station Evolution 1079 and were basically married to the program. Shortly after I graduated college I accepted a part-time traffic reporter position. A year later, I made the move to be cruiser for Power 104 and Q1031, and worked my way up into my own evening show December of 2016! So it’s really just a case of choosing a program you love and never giving up after graduation.
Q: Talk about The Brooklyn Diaries? How did this evolve?
A: Well, I suppose ‘The Brooklyn Diaries,’ is an array of things now; it started off being a title to sum up my mumbles and muses. Since I was a kid, I’ve used writing as a healthy outlet. The love of sharing and writing has always been there. There was a six month stint after graduation where I thought I’d never get back into radio again, so I tried out blogging for size. It isn’t for me, not at this time of my life at least. I think I realized I prefer writing when it’s not forced - when it’s more of a hobby and less of time crunch. The Brooklyn Diaries is also my Instagram handle because I find it sounds cleaner and sums up my life - I talk for a living, I’m an open book, welcome to the story. Some chapters are exciting, some are a little messy. Why wouldn’t I also name my podcast that too?
Q: Where do you see yourself in 5 years?
A: This is so tricky - I’m trying to take life one day at a time and live in the “now.” I never live in the now, except for when I’m on air (hello, live radio!). I usually dwell about the past or worry about the future. So, my 5 year goal changes daily. In 5 years, I’ll be turning 27. I hope to be at a major market radio station - or possibly venture over to television. Maybe my podcast will still be strong, or I will try blogging again. I hope to be mentally and physically healthy and perhaps engaged with a like-minded soul?! I hope to be happy - however that looks like.
Q: How would you define success?
A: Success is so different to everyone, but I think if I wake up every morning happy to be doing what I do, then that is a life I wish to live. A life filled with love. Success is loving what you do - no matter what it is.
Q: Where are your favourite places to go in Kelowna?
A: I’ve made a personal goal for myself that every city my career takes me to, I will explore it and know it like the back of my hand before I move. For clothing, I adore FROCK! Second hand clothing is my jam - I don’t remember the last time I shopped at a mall. Cranberry Junction is so cute too! I love, love, love that we’re surrounded by mountains and water - I love taking drives down West Side Road out to Fintry or out to Peachland. I quite enjoy the Cactus Club by the water! For coffee; Marmalade Cat Cafe, The Bread Co. and Bean Scene of course! You can also find me at BNA, because who doesn’t love sipping some craft beer while on a hipster esque couch?
Q: What’s it been like working at Q1031?
A: I could not have asked for a better start to my career. Everyone in this building is a family - for both Q and our sister station Power104. We laugh, all the time. I think sometimes you find radio can be very corporate, and that’s fine. But I’m really enjoying being at a station where it’s community first. The team has been so supportive of me as this is my first gig - and I love being able to say we’re friends first. I was nervous moving away for the first time for a job, and it not going as well as I’d hope - but I can’t complain one bit. I’ll be sad whenever I do leave.
Q: What tips do you have for someone wanting to pursue a career within radio?
A: If you’re in British Columbia, I can not recommend BCIT’s two year program enough! If you’re in a program, I’m sure your teachers will tell you this but if not - don’t let the pay check scare you. The money will always work itself out - it’s about why you wanted to get into it in the first place and we all start somewhere. ALSO - MOVE! Don’t be afraid to move out and away! It may last 2 years, 6 months, who knows! It’s going to be nerve wracking but it’s needed to progress! If you don’t move for the job, someone else will.
Q: What is it like putting on somewhat of a different persona on radio than how you are in person?
A: Actually, the goal is to sound as authentic and ‘day to day,’ on air as possible. Sounding like a radio jock is kind of outdated now. In fact, BCIT forced us to drop that the moment we walked in the door. You kind of hope your listeners can confide in your as a pal.
Q: Have you had any setbacks in your career? if so can you talk about this?
A: Well, my career is just starting - however after I graduated BCIT, I was way too scared to move away for jobs. I was too nervous to even look, and therefore nothing happened for me. There are a lot of reasons why I didn’t want to move, so I just stayed in Langley and worked other jobs to make money and stay close to home and friends. I wasn’t feeling fulfilled though - it’s not like half-way through BCIT I decided radio wasn’t for me. I love radio, media, all of it. Why wasn’t I doing it? I had a hard 12 months after BCIT but I finally took the leap when my former instructor sent me the Kelowna job opening. Since then, I’ve been married to my career and it hasn’t failed me…..yet!
Q: You are on on air evenings + weekends. What do you discuss and how do you keep your audience engaged?
A: I always joke that I’m Q’s walking demographic - a kind of a broke kid in her 20’s who loves music, social media and staying up to date. So looking for show content isn’t hard for me. I try and make light of daily struggles that are relatable, pop-culture bits, and every day news. I also have segments throughout the week, where people can text in #ThisorThat, call in and confess their #DirtyLittleSecrets (less dirty than it sounds, I always have a specific question) and #NewMusicFriday is my favourite! Last week we played Chance the Rapper and I was reminded why I love my job.
Q: Do you have anything else you want your viewers to know about you?
A: Hmm! I suppose to just connect with me if they wish to!
And of course my show on Hot Hits Q1031 - evenings 7-12pm and weekends 9-3pm!