Megan Tan and Sophie Harper know about that ever-elusive pod/life balance. Both star as central characters in their own documentary-style podcasts Millennial (Megan) and Not By Accident (Sophie). Both have zero commute from bedroom to office. And both craft deeply personal stories they bravely unleash onto the world. For us, they’ll unpack the ‘how’ and ‘whys’ of their podcasting lives; how they got started, their production processes, and the +/- of putting themselves centrestage, and share bonus words of comfort for those who suffer from the mix of pain/exhilaration that comes with working on passion projects. You know who you are.
Good at making stuff, less so at making bank? Strap yourself in for this guide to freelance survival. Independent producers Honor Eastly (moderator), Miles Martignoni, Hannah Reich and Megan Tan will discuss how to carve out careers in audio that actually pay the bills. Hear about the all-important hustle—how to keep your ideas ship-shape, where to pitch, when to negotiate, and what your rate should look like. They’ll ask each other the nosey questions so you don’t have to.
Seeking new audiences and snap-fresh ideas? Seek no further! In this session Jess O'Callaghan (moderator), Jess Ong, Jessica Cox and Charmaine Ingram explore how best to craft audio that both creates and connects with listening communities. How do we burst media bubbles and take stories stratospheric? How can we engage in ways that are meaningful and respectful? These creators have each experimented with different forms of engagement, and in this session will share what has (and hasn’t) worked for them.
What do cub scouts and audio producers have in common? They’re always prepared. In this session, RN’s Steven Tilley fills you in on the smartest and savviest recording equipment to kit yourself up with. From the best handheld recorder to buy on a budget, to what kind of mic to use in different recording situations, to pulling off a pristine field recording—Steven’s got a heap of tips and tricks to share. This session is aimed at new and developing producers, but will also be great for those who want a refresher and love a bit of tech talk.
The very first thing Camilla Hannan does when she has a story idea is think about how it will sound. With a background in audio and fine arts, Camilla brings an artistic sensibility to her pieces, and in this session she shows you how you can too. From field recordings to the final mix, Camilla will reveal the building blocks of her work and demonstrate how carefully weaving sound into a story can leave your listener all tingly. Perfect for advanced producers or those itching for a dive deep into the possibilities of sound.
We’re happy your mum likes your podcast…but if you want to find ears beyond hers you might want to sit in on this session. Nova’s Head of Podcasting, Jay Walkerden, and Acast’s Director of Content, Caitlin Thompson, will dish on developing a digital strategy to muscle up your fanbase, expand your reach, and commercialise your podcast. (Don’t worry, mum will still love it). They’ll also showcase the winner of the recent PodQuest initiative, for added inspirational ka-ching.
Under the hood with This is About
This is about…This is About, an RN podcast that digs deep into issues that matter through the beautiful, awkward and messy stuff that happens to people. In this session, producers Belinda Lopez and Jesse Cox will revisit a few of their favourite stories and share techniques they’ve fine-tuned along the way. You’ll leave knowing more about how to produce compelling narratives, complete with top-notch pace, structure and sound—sans ‘reporter’. Plus, find out how to pitch to the podcast (and what a good pitch looks like).
There’s a lot of conversational podcasts out there—but what makes a good one? In this session, Tom Wright (moderator), Lee Tran Lam, Kamna Muddagouni and Andrew Levins will talk about how, in a sea of talk shows, you can help your podcast rise to the top. From bypassing tedium, to tackling niche topics, our four expert chatterboxes will tell you what they know about keeping a good conversation rolling.
Radio and beyond with Gina McKeon
Hear the success story of SBS’ My Grandmother’s Lingo from its chief creator, Gina McKeon. In 2012, while reporting in the Northern Territory, Gina met Angelina Joshua, a young Aboriginal woman from Ngukurr. She recorded an interview with Angelina about the plight of Indigenous languages, which laid the groundwork for My Grandmother’s Lingo. This online interactive documentary has recently picked up a slew of awards for innovation in storytelling. In this session, Gina talks about her journey from radio producer → digital storyteller, and shares the processes behind the My Grandmother’s Lingo project.
Every so often, a story will sink its teeth in…and not let go. Gather close and lend an ear to four producers who live and breathe these life-changing and life-challenging stories. They’ll traverse the tricky terrain of reporting sensitive issues, tackling trauma with a featherlight touch, and ensuring both interviewer and interviewee are cushioned from impact. They’ll also discuss the essential bedrock of ethics, journalistic codes and personal codes that form a foundation for it all.
Originally hailing from NPR and now at Audible as Senior Vice President of Original Content Development, this podcasting heavyweight will guide us through the rich landscape of audio today here and abroad, and reveal the key ingredients for fearless storytelling. What ideas warrant your grit and determination? How best to transform seed to story? Hear how to set your bar roof-high and spread premium sound content like syrup with a master of the trade.