Beyond the Byline: Getting to know Genna Short

Welcome back to Skirts and Scuffs for the second installment in the “Beyond the Byline” series. Beyond the Byline is designed to give Skirts and Scuffs readers a glimpse into the lives of some of our contributors beyond what you see in their submissions or on Twitter.

When I started Skirts and Scuffs last fall I knew I wanted today’s interview subject to be part of the team. She’s one of the first people I personally connected with on Twitter and has become a friend to me over the last year. Today I sit down with Skirts and Scuffs contributor and Hour of Horsepower Co-host Genesis (Genna) Short to get to know her a little better.

You will learn a little about Genna’s background, the struggles of finding an audience for her budding radio show, and her hopes for the future. Sit back and relax as we go “Beyond the Byline” with Genna.


First of all tell us about your background. Where are you from? What do you do for a living?
I'm 25 years old and I was born and raised in Tucson, Arizona. Never really been out of here much. I’m sort of a homebody. I’m half Mexican, my mother was born in Mexico and came here to Tucson as a young child. I’m really proud of both of my backgrounds. I think, sometimes, I’d like to be more Mexican than white. Mexicans are just more interesting, and we can dance better.

I’m also the proud mommy of a 3 year old Australian Shepherd and a very proud US Marine sister!

I am an finance escalations specialist at Sprint. It’s not as glamorous as it sounds, believe me! I basically take payments all day. One thing I really do enjoy is that I get to really help people. I help people who are in bad times by setting up payment plans for them to be able to pay their bills when it’s more convenient for them. I’ve always been the type that enjoys helping people, that’s one of the best parts of my job.

Some of our readers might not know that you co-host a radio show. Tell us a little about Hour of Horsepower and where we can listen and when you are live.

About a year ago when I met Aaron Rosser, who is now my co-host, I was on a couple of racing podcasts. It can be very addicting, once you get over the nerves. Aaron said he had always wanted to start his own, but he was not sure where to start.

Well, I went to Blog Talk Radio and opened an account. We never did anything with it because we thought we had to have special equipment so we were waiting until we could get some headsets and such. Well, one night we were on Summer Dreyer’s show, Next Time By, and we were hooked. We started our show, Hour of Horsepower, the very next day, January 14. It has been a really fun ride and we’ve had some amazing guests on the show. I feel very fortunate to be a part of something like this, something that not many other people are doing.

Podcasting is getting a lot more popular but Aaron and I pride ourselves on being one of the first NASCAR podcasts. Sure, we definitely weren’t the first, but we’re coming into this at a time when it’s becoming a little more popular, but it still has a unique feel to it. Our live shows are always on Mondays at 10:30pm EST, Wednesdays at 10pm EST, and Saturday nights/Sunday mornings at 12am EST, Fridays at 12am EST on weekends when we have night races. During the week, our shows are mostly news, discussing the races, previews, basically all your normal NASCAR coverage. On the weekends, our shows are raunchy, dirty, and generally off-color. Pretty much anything goes. Weekends we discuss off-beat and fun topics. Just a little disclaimer: if you’re naive, faint of heart, suffer from high blood pressure, are taking any drugs for a heart condition, undergoing chemotherapy, under the age of 27, pregnant, nursing, or elderly, then please do not tune in.

What's been the most difficult task in developing the show? Where have you found advice for how to make things work?
Wow, there have been a slew of issues to keep this show going. First of all, getting guests on the show is really not as easy as it seems! Sometimes, we’ve had to really jump through hoops to have some of the great guests that we’ve had. We really struggled after about 10 episodes or so with an identity issue, figuring out who we wanted to be as a show, as hosts. We finally worked out some things and found what really works for us. We really enjoy where we’re at now as hosts and as a show altogether. I feel we’ve really grown as hosts and our friendship has really improved as well. The very best part is that no one else that we know has a show quite like our weekend show. No one else out there discusses the things we do. I feel that makes us unique and fun.

Some advice on the show? If you’re out there wanting to start your own show, not quite sure of what to do, I say just jump into it. Write down some topics, get some good panelists, and just go for it! You can start a free podcast on Blog Talk Radio with a hosting account. All you need is a phone and a computer. As far as panelists go, try and choose 3-4 that you are familiar with and trust. Also pick people who’s opinions in NASCAR you greatly respect. Of course, a little debate is always fun.

Most of all, I can’t stress how important it is to have good control over the show. When you have guests and panelists on the show, make sure that you have a good format, whatever works for you, and don’t let people talk out of turn too often. Have your topics picked out beforehand and don’t try and discuss too many things in one night. Also, try to, respectably, ask your guests and panelists to try and keep their answers to a reasonable time frame.

One more thing to add is to try and start a companion blog or website for the show. Aaron and I have one,, and we have a site archive where we have a list of all of our shows. We also have links and posts that we put up, as a companion to our show.

I know you dabble in graphic design (see our awesome logo). photography, and pr. are you hoping to make one of those a full time career?
I’d really love to make a career out of graphic design but I just don’t see that in my future. This mostly being because I’m a terrible artist and drawing/painting is a pretty large part of graphic design. I still really enjoy making my own designs on my computer, I think I’m pretty good at it and, I guess, it’s still just a hobby.

I have done a little public relations for a driver in the K&N Pro Series West named Moses Smith. We were able to get him elected most popular driver in 2009. It was a good feeling to know that you’ve been able to help someone achieve their goal. I was proud and excited to be a part of Moses’ career in that way. I found some new friendships through the street team that I believe will really last.

Genna Music Photography is really my niche. I took a photography class in college and I found that I may really have a talent for it. Not only that but I really just adore photography. I definitely think it’s reasonable to try and make my future in photography. I mostly do fine art but I’ve dabbled in sports/action photography and will be looking into doing some photos at local race tracks. I really don’t like to photograph people. I know that sounds odd, but people don’t seem to hold my interest as far as photography goes. I suppose, if I want to get into sports, I’d better get used to it. But portraiture is definitely not something I’m interested in.

One thing that people may not be aware of is that I’m a novelist. I wrote a novel in 2008 for National Novel Writing Month. It is just what it sounds like: to write a novel in 30 days, around 1500 words a day. I finished mine in just 18, which is roughly 2777.7 words a day! I’m more of a dramatic fiction novelist than anything, although I have tested the waters in fantasy fiction. Both genres are really fun. I really have to say that it was my proudest moment when, at around 4pm on November 23, 2008, I finally typed out the 50,000th word to my novel. There was just no feeling like it in the world. As of right now, the novel has been put on hold and is still unfinished, but I plan to finish it one day.

if you could only ever interview one driver on your show who would it be? Who would be your ultimate interview and why?

Oh! That’s a great question. There are so many great guests we’ve had on our show so far that I’m not sure who I’d choose for my ultimate interview.

If I could only choose one driver, I think I’d choose Jeff Gordon. He really is a legend and there are so many questions I’d love to ask him. I know it seems like he’s really been eclipsed lately by Jimmie’s success, but I still think he is full of talent and I just love to watch him race. He really is one of the best racers out there and is exciting to watch.

I think my ultimate interview would be Bill France Sr. I mean, how cool would that be??

Tell us what drew you to write for Skirts & Scuffs? Do you contribute to other sites? Which ones?
I was drawn to write for Skirts and Scuffs because I just love NASCAR. I’m a fairly new fan to the sport and I love the concept of the site. I really love that us ladies can group together to dispel all the myths of female race fans and just connect on a personal level. I’ve made a few friends writing for the site.

I got to meet up with a couple of the ladies from the site in April out in Phoenix when they were in town for the race. Rebecca Kivak and Farrah Kaye were out there. As you know, Bec was one of he members of the Tweet Crew Team. We all hung out for a few hours, Bec and I visited a kart track in the Valley where we got to meet Michael McDowell (pictured with Genna and Rebecca), Brian Scott, and the Speed Freaks. I really love the friendships that I’ve made with these ladies and hope they last a long time.

I don’t really write for anyone else at the moment. I do plan on starting up some more writing, but I am so busy with my show right now that finding the time to write is very difficult.

When did you realize that NASCAR was your sport? What was your AHA! moment?
Oh this here’s a fun story. I was supposed to go with my ex fiancé to a demolition derby in 2003 or early 2004 and because I’m never on time anywhere, we missed the event. I felt really bad so, knowing how close we were to Tucson Raceway Park, I offered to take him to the race track. We got there and sat down and that was it, I was completely hooked. I started watching NASCAR the very next season, the 2004 Daytona 500. Ever since then, I’ve been watching racing.

It was definitely an odd moment when I became a racing fan because I grew up in a house that was devoid of all sports. We didn’t watch or really play. In fact, no one really watched any sports until my mom married my step dad. Then it was all NFL. My brother was a linebacker on the football team and also captain of the 943rd armed drill platoon at Catalina HS here in Tucson but even being a drill/football sister, racing was always my thing.

You are pretty active on twitter and it's a huge part of where our readership comes from. What driver do you think should have an account and who do you think should NEVER have one?
Oh I think Michael Waltrip and Kenny Wallace should never have had one. Their tweets are sometimes way too much information! I have to say though, they are fun and they reply to fans a lot. It is really neat just to watch their interactions with the fans on Twitter. It makes them seem more like real people instead of guys we watch on TV every week.

I’d love to see some guys like Dale Earnhardt Jr. and maybe Clint Bowyer open up some personal accounts. It would be really fun to get into their heads. I can understand why someone like Dale Jr wouldn’t really want to subject himself to something like that, but I still think he should do it.

Who are your role models?
My mom and grandmother. My nana worked so hard to bring her children here to the United States so they and their children could have a better life. I admire my mother because she raised three children for many years on her own until she married my step dad when I was 19.

They are two of the most amazing women I have ever had the privilege to know in my life. I get my love of traveling, tea, and books from my nana. I get my pride, ambition, and strength from my mother. I couldn’t have asked for two better people to learn from in my life. When my grandmother died in 2008, I felt like every little thing I did from that point forward was to be just like her.

My racing/media role model would have to be Nate Ryan. I really admire him as a person and would really like to find myself in a position like he is. I had the wonderful opportunity to meet him at a race in 2009 and I really loved that he is so down to earth. I also had the great joy of having him as a guest on my podcast. He will also be on the show again this week, Wednesday the 5th of May.

Also, I have to say I really love the Speed Freaks. Crash and Kenny had a vision and really made it happen. I look to them as some great role models to get into radio and I try and glean as much information as I can. Crash has been a wonderful source of information and advice for me. I always ask her advice when I need it for my show. She’s always willing to help me in any way that she can. I love all that she did for the show the week that I met her. Kenny is just bizarre but he is fun and hilarious. He has a really zany sense of humor and I feel like I can learn to let myself go just a little more from him.

Describe yourself in one sentence.
I’m a fun loving, bizarre, giggly, loud, obnoxious, loveable, cute, fat, half bred Mexican tomboy who loves NASCAR and heavy metal.

Thanks Genna for taking the time to tell us more about yourself. We wish you luck with Hour of Horsepower and can't wait to see what the future brings.

If you are enjoying this series don't forget to come back next Tuesday May 11 for the next installment. My next interview subject? The one and only Summer Dreyer

All photos used with the permission of Genna Short.

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Beyond the Byline: Getting to know Genna Short Beyond the Byline: Getting to know Genna Short Reviewed by Admin on Wednesday, May 05, 2010 Rating: 5