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Story Conversations

Story Conversations

Story Conversations is an interview program recorded live online for Social Media. The discussion centred around the art of story telling and we also explored how to engage people with stories about faith, spirituality and other existential themes.

In the first episode we interviewed Screenwriter and YouTuber Simon Kennedy. We chatted for just over an hour, about how Simon’s YouTube channel has helped support his professional writing career. We also discovered from Simon how critical it is to understand your audience when it comes to developing good engagement – skills we think are transferable to other business practices.

During the episode we talked about some helpful books for screenwriters, these included:

Save The Cat, Blake Snyder

The Hero with a Thousand Faces, Joseph Campbell

Story, Robert McKee

The Writers Journey, Christopher Vogler

We (Story Strategist) have read all these except for Vogler’s book, which is now on the list to read. So, thanks Simon for the recommendations. You can watch the interview with Simon below. We also referred to The Hero’s Journey and for those that are curious to learn more about what we were talking about here are a couple of short YouTube videos that explain what The Hero’s Journey is and how it applies to many of the Hollywood movies we watch. But, be warned… once you know it, it may spoil your movie viewing forever!

As we continue to search for interesting people to interview, we promise that Story Conversations will be more than just creativity and film making. We believe story and ideas are important in all contexts. Think of story as a product or something in business you want to trade and how you can engage your audience. At Story Strategist we hold stories up high and believe they are powerful vehicles for sharing ideas. Story is also an essential component of the strategic process. We have developed a whole methodology called the Story Audience Platform Explorer, or SAP for short. We believe what we learn from storytellers and other creatives can help all of us in business, and in just the same way, what we learn from business entrepreneurs is helpful to the business of creativity too. After all, our stories need to engage in order to provide a return on investment.

Our second episode of Story Conversations featured an expert panel representing broadcast television and streaming media in Australia, Europe, USA and the world.

We explored opportunities and pathways for screen media practitioners to get involved in Christian Media in Australia and event though we targeted people in Australia, we even had  guests join live from New Zealand, South Africa, Indonesia and Holland!

We asked how our expert panel of guests got involved in their field, and what screen media opportunities might exist. We also explored pathways for screen media practitioners, and discovered how our guests got involved in Christian Media and learned what they believe to be the future of Christian Media.

Stu Harris is CEO and co-founder of Story Strategist – a marketing strategy and media production company. He is a passionate communicator and has an extensive career in tech-marketing, film, television and the creative arts.

Ben Field is an award-winning producer and director, currently serving as Head of Programming for the Hillsong Channel, a television network broadcasting inspirational and uplifting shows to over 180 countries around the world.

Els Griffioen is a Senior Producer with New Faith Network, a Christian streaming service that started in 2018 in The Netherlands and recently expanded to Norway, Sweden, UK, Ireland, Australia and New Zealand.

Adam Niven is the Production Team Manager at ACCTV (GOOD) based on the Sunshine Coast in Queensland. In this role, he is involved with the development and production of content produced by ACCTV as well as working with others to co-produce content that meets the needs of ACCTV.

A massive thanks to CMAA for co-presenting this episode. Stay up-to-date with the latest in Christian Media by visiting

Meet other practitioners in Screen Media by joining the Facebook Group, Christians in Screen Media.

Next, we interviewed award-winning screenwriter, editor and director Vanessa Perdriau. Vanessa has over 13 years of experience in the London film industry across a variety of formats and genres, including fiction, documentary, short films, feature films, music videos, commercials and corporate films. Here is a link to the conversation we had with Vanessa.

Our first episode of 2022 was with Els Griffeon. We’d spoken with Els on a previous episode of Story Conversations, but this episode was special because Story Strategist had since been engaged by New Faith Network to produce the next four episodes of The Origin, an Australian production TV series created exclusively for New Faith Network’s on-demand streaming platform.

The first four episodes feature exclusively Australian pastors and leaders of different denominations across Australia, including Joel A’bell, formerly Hillsong, now Convoy of Hope, Grethe Stanley, founder of Daughters of the King, Daniel Hagen, Fire Church and Awakening Australia, and Darryl Lingwoodock, of Hope Centre. Each episode follows their faith journey from how they became a follower of Jesus, the high points and challenges of ministry, to the impact being a Christian has made on their life. Here is a link to the trailer and also the interview with Els.

We’re planning further episodes of Story Conversations, so stay tuned.

Christmas Holidays:

We’re taking a short break. Our office closes midday Friday 22 December and re-opens Monday 8 January. Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!