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THE GOSPEL ACCORDING TO… Anna Priestland // Letters Of Love In WW2


THE GOSPEL ACCORDING TO… Anna Priestland // Letters Of Love In WW2

Anna is an Australian writer and producer. After writing a large collection of work for Casefile True Crime podcast and other global podcasts in the genre, Anna began producing a number of in depth projects of her own. In addition, she takes on extensive podcast writing projects for places such as Murdertown for Crime+Investigation at A+E Networks UK.

A few things she enjoyed in the last year were: spending two months working from a haunted Victorian jail cell, arriving in the middle of the Wyoming desert to the scene of a forty-year old murder, telling a family that their parents’ love story from the battlefields of WW2 would be brought to life as a podcast by HISTORY TV channel, and being given the opportunity by NASA to explore behind the curtain of the Kennedy Space Centre.

Tell us a little about your podcast…?

I have worked on many podcasts as a writer, but my first podcast of my own creation and partnership is The Letters of Love in WW2 with HISTORY UK. It was a podcast concept I’ve been working on for a couple of years, entirely told through real letters. When HISTORY said they were interested in producing it, I knew it was going to be an amazing collaboration, there is no better network than HISTORY for this production.

If you could go back to just before you recorded the first episode of your podcast and give yourself one piece of advice, what would it be?

I would tell myself to stop worrying if people would “get it” and just make what I feel is right for the story.

What makes a great podcast guest?

There are two things that make a great guest, one is a person who really knows their subject. Even if they are nervous, their words will come naturally and confidently if they know their stuff. The other thing is the importance of making a guest feel at ease. When a podcast guest is relaxed and you make sure they know there is no pressure, and it’s not a live broadcast (and can be edited) they often forget they are being interviewed. It’s more like a natural conversation.

What makes a great podcast host?

One that has a natural passion for their subject.

What’s been your worst podcast moment?

Probably when I was on the other side of the coin. I don’t enjoy public speaking so being interviewed myself was a nerve-wracking experience for me.

What is it about podcasts that appeals to you?

I love imaging the scenes people are describing or discussing in my mind. I also love the fact that really, anyone can make a podcast.

What annoys you about podcasts/other podcasters?

Nothing! As long as people support each other and appreciate everyone has different tastes and ideas, it’s a great industry to be in.

Is there anything you found annoying as a podcast listener… but then understood when you started making your own?

Not really, but it’s impossible to truly understand the time and energy that goes into a podcast until you actually work on one.

Which one podcast episode of your own means the most to you?

Oh that’s a toss up! The first podcast episode I ever wrote, which was Casefile True Crime Podcast #42 Sherri Rasmussen means a lot to me, because I knew from that moment on I had found my calling. But also, the first episode of Letters of Love In WW2 being released and having the family be truly happy with what I had put together meant the world to me.

Which one podcast episode not of your own means the most to you?

In 2015, Criminal Podcast released an episode called “The secret People of Carville”. There was a time in our history when 450 patients with Leprosy were quarantined in a low security prison in Louisiana with 500 criminals. Over a 100 year period, people with the disease were isolated there often against their will, and in a way treated like criminals.  It’s a story about human nature, misconceptions and how for many of these patients, the facility became a place of somewhat peace. This episode inspired me to be a storyteller.


Listen to Letters of Love in WW2 on Apple Podcasts, Acast & Spotify.


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