Frequently Asked Questions

Here are a few questions you might like answered before embarking on this journey:

How long will it take?

This really depends on what kind of story you are making and your skill level with things like writing and editing. For a beginner a 10-to-15-minute story usually takes four to six weeks. During that time, you might be putting in a couple of hours a week emailing back and forth with your supervising producer and making edits. If there’s research to do or interviews to organise it might take a little longer

What do I need? 

We won’t expect you to spend any money on this! The digital audio software we recommend, Reaper, is free to trial for the first 60 days. If you decide you love audio making you might want to buy it after that, but that should get you through for your first story. For recording, if you don’t have a handheld recorder, you can use your mobile phone by changing a few settings. If you want a higher quality recording, we can try to organise access to a studio if one of our partner stations is near to you (Sydney, Melbourne, Adelaide, Brisbane, Alice Springs, Hobart).

What can I expect from my supervising producer?

Your supervising producer will tailor their support to your needs and skill level. They will look over ‘paper’ drafts and audio drafts, give you advice on story writing, editing and sound design. They will propose a timeline and give the editorial manager a date for publication. They will also consult with you and the editorial manager if any ethical issues arise during the story making process. Keep in mind though that they are volunteers! Most of our SPs work full time as audio professionals. It’s great if you can make things easier for them. For example, if you’re sending a draft script for a 10-minute story, make sure its somewhere in the vicinity of 600 words. Don’t expect them to cut down a 2000-word draft for you. 

What happens if I don’t finish my story?

We know that things don’t always go according to plan and life gets in the way! If something unexpected comes up and you need to put your story on indefinite hold, we’ll understand. You’re always welcome to pick it back up in the future. Saying all that, we ask that you have a think about whether you have time to make a story with us before you start. Your supervising producer is volunteering their time and they want something to show for it! Also if the story falls through we have to reshuffle our production schedule and ghost of Excel will be angered!  

If you have any more questions, you can reach out to the Editorial Manager Mell,

Free Resources

All The Best Story Making Guide

This will walk you through the usual story making process. This will give you a really good understanding of the amount of time and work your story might take!

Example Paper Draft 

If you like, you can use this to draft your script. Putting in descriptions of the music and sound design will help your SP get a sense of the style you’re going for and imagine how it mind sound in the audio version. Ps please make your own copy!

How To Use Reaper

This folder contains a detailed guide on how to use Reaper and some other instructions on file management, noise reduction and shortcuts that might be helpful. If you learn better watching though, we recommend this excellent tutorial series from Kenny Gioia.

Cue Sheet 

You’ll need to fill this out toward the end of the story making process. This has two purposes; it gives us the details we need for our host’s intro, website copy and social media posts and it also acts as a contract, laying out your rights and responsibilities as a story maker. Again, please make your own copy!  

That’s all for now! Make sure you listen to some past All The Best stories to get a sense of our style and standard. You can also ask the editorial manager to recommend some stories that might be similar to what you want to make.