One filter in your prep process should be – is there audio we can play in this break that will help make it sparkle? There was a time (in the olden days!) when the only audio available came from the prep services you subscribed to. But with the internet, audio is everywhere. Breaks with the cast just talking about a TV show they watched are not as good as breaks that have audio from that TV show. This is for a few reasons: first, the audio provides much needed context for those who didn’t see the show (most of your listeners) so they understand better your comments. Second, listeners need “audio stimulation” so they don’t drift and audio inside a break provides that, helping keep their interest. So always look for audio for any topic you do. Here’s a simple, yet effective character break from Christine and Salt, WTIC-FM, Hartford. Christine got a letter from her son’s school and wondered if it was real. A local TV station confirmed it. Their use of that audio did the two critical things above, which made the break better perceptually.