10 Questions with Adam Shand

Investigative journalist and writer Adam Shand has had a 30-year career that’s covered all spectrums of the media: print, TV and radio.

He’s written for The Australian and The Bulletin and has worked for the Nine Network, including stints at A Current Affair and the Today Show.

After a two-year stint doing drive on Perth’s 6PR, Shand returned to Melbourne at the end of 2016 and began working on a podcast idea that led him to a collaboration with SCA’s PodcastOne.

The 10-part The Trials Of The Vampire tells the true story of Shane Chartres-Abbott; a male prostitute accused of raping and mutilating a client.

Dubbed the “Vampire Gigolo”, Chartres-Abbott was murdered outside his home in 2003 on the day he was to give evidence at his trial.

Adam Shand answers Ten Questions from Radio Today.

  • What IS the Adam Shand ‘story’?

 A naughty boy who told stories and then made a career out of it.

  • You’ve established a successful print career and have worked in TV, so what led you to radio?

An offer to take the Drive time helm at 6PR and speak direct to the people.

  • Where has the radio journey taken you?

From Melbourne to Perth and into the world of podcasting. And from one unexpected pleasure to the next.

  • Was it a big jump moving from one ‘genre’ to another?

It’s all storytelling to me. If it can be writ, it can be spoken, or shot or broadcast.

  • You’ve recently collaborated with Southern Cross Austereo and Podcast One for a ‘true crime’ podcast:  Why ‘this’ story?

The Trials of the Vampire was a story that should have been told years ago but somehow wasn’t. It simply cried out to be told and yielded far more than I could have ever imagined.

  • Is there scope for more stories along those lines?

Yes absolutely, anyone who has a story as intriguing as this one, please see me after.

  • Besides time, what does it take to develop these stories in the podcast form?

Passion and collaboration. Editor, mixer and music composer Matt Nikolic (aka The Boy Genius) grasped the story from another end (the soundscape) and after much struggle we met at the centre of it.

  • Do you think podcasting, as it develops, will broaden the career options of journalists?

It should and 2017 is the year the change will begin to quicken. It’s a unique canvas which is not only broad but deep also.

  • Any hankering to get back behind the microphone in the more traditional sense?

Beyond regular karaoke sessions, no plans at this stage.

  • With the gift of hindsight, what advice would you give a young Adam Shand?

The people who tell you that you’re too close to a story are nearly always the ones who are too far away.

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