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M.A. Presents: How to Grow Your Podcast

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M.A. Presents - How to Grow Your Podcast
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How to Grow Your Podcast Transcript

Hero Bloopers

[sing-song, in the Presenter's voice] Let's sit up straight... and let's get podcasting!

[Title music: slow, bluesy jazz.]

Hero Bloopers

[in the Presenter's voice] Monstrous Agonies- [in normal voice] Ooh, no, I can do my normal voice. That's just me saying that, in't it. That's H.R. Owen, that's me!

H.R. Owen

Monstrous Agonies presents, How to Grow Your Podcast: An Intermediate Guide, Told Through the Medium of Bloopers

[The music fades out.]

H.R. Owen

So, you've been running your podcast for some time now and are looking to make the most of the skills and learning you've gained since you began. You've left behind the silly mistakes that plagued your early efforts, and have hit your stride at last.

Hero Bloopers

[in the Presenter's voice] We'll start things off tonight... [swallowing] with a whole lot of spit in my mouth.

[surprised sounds, followed by laughter] That's the sound of your favourite indie podcaster blinding themselves by pressing 'torch' instead of 'aeroplane mode'.

[lip popping sounds] I'm wile poppy tonight. [a clatter as Hero drops their phone] Ooh, don't! [laughing] Wile droppy tonight!

Monstrous Agonies. Episode [snorting through nose] Nine. [exaggeratedly snorting through nose] Nine. Episode Nine, guys. [beat. Then, in normal voice] Nine?! It's Fifty Nine! Jesus!

Monstrous Agonies. Episode Sixty Nine- [laughing] I can't believe I laughed at that! [bleep] me, what am I, twelve? Jesus...

[in the Presenter's voice] “Go back, back, back,” calls the mouse- [normal voice] Mouse? Nope. [squeaky voice] Mouse go eek eek.

[in the Presenter's voice] Firstly. [flubbering]

Some of them even tried to shoot me. [highly indignant] Me! In my- [snorting laughter]

[in the Presenter's voice] It's a poke uh... [normal voice] I keep nearly saying Pokémon.

Extort- [flubbering]

[in the Presenter's voice] We have something of a familial [lispy mouth sounds. Then, in a lispy voice] Famiwial theme tonight, lithenerth.

I'm a somnambu- I'm- I'm a sonam- Blegh! Hmm hmm. Thanks, Leslie, for giving me the word “somnambulist” [laughing] to read.

I visited a nice frictionless plane once. [trying not to laugh] Very clean, very modern.

[in a dragon's voice] I feel I should add for context that I am a mostly single- [laughing, in normal voice] I am a mostly single mother, yep. Lorelei Gilmore.

[in the Presenter's voice] Have you considered eating the rich- [bursts out laughing]

[in the Presenter's voice] 131.3FM. The voice of liminal Britain. I forgot to write the next bit [laughing] and I've only just realised.

[overenthusiastic] Episode Fif- Wooah!

Tonight's c- Tonight's firth- [flubbing] Tonight's fourth letter- Tonight's fourth letter- Tonight's- Tonight's fourth- Tonight's fourth letter- Tonight's fourth letter- Tonight's fourth caller was written and performed by William A. Wellman.

That shouldn't have taken as many takes as it did...

You can also s... You can also show your support by sh... Egh!

I hope it's OK. It's gonna [bleep]-ing have to be because I'm not doing it again.

H.R. Owen

One aspect of podcasting that is easy to overlook is the importance of the practical element. For example, you will likely by now have realised the importance of having proper refreshments with you as you record, to keep yourself hydrated and energised throughout your performance.

Hero Bloopers

Mmmm!! [swallowing] Every single week I swallow a bit of wet ginger!

[swallowing and spluttering]

Extra, extra! Read all about it! Podcaster murdered by root- Root! It's just a root, innit, it's not a root vegetable. [laughing] Podcaster murdered by root! [whisper shouting] I was rooting for you, Anakin! We were all rooting for you!

[swallowing and spluttering. The clink of mug being put down] Ginger strikes again.

Christ, I'm not kidding, I-I genuinely swallowed a huge lump of ginger just before recording. And it's sitting [laughing] in my throat... getting spicier and spicier!

[spitting, spluttering and coughing followed by the sound of a mug being put down] Keeps me on my toes!

God, I feel like a horse in a Terry Pratchett novel! [laughing]

[deep breath] I've been orally figged. [bursts out laughing]

I wish soup was an appropriate thing to drink while you're voice acting. [little voice] Little croutons... [vaguely American accent] I would like a little crouton. Get me a piece of toast but make it tiny. [more like a mob boss] Give me the tiniest piece of toast you ever saw. [beat] Smaller! [bursts out laughing]

H.R. Owen

Your physical space is also important to consider. As your podcast gains momentum, it's vitally important you have a calm, comfortable place in which to work, in order to bring your best self to your recordings.

Hero Bloopers

The real monsters are podcasters who set up their ramshackle recording studio [dramatic voice] next to a radiato-o-or!

[whiny] I'm so sweaty!

Oh my God. [laughing] I'm... so... sweaty! [with increasing despair] I haven't even started! And every bit of me that's touching another bit is damp! Urrggghhh!!

[clunking] It's hot as balls!

I'm already sweating my jebs off. [beat. Then, whispered] It's free top surgery.

Oh God it's so hot...

It's a hundred degrees and I'm full of peanut butter!

Lawks! [laughing] I'm so sweaty! Crumbs.

I'm very hot and angry. [clunking. Then, in a posh accent] It may not lead to my very best performance yet.

[vaguely German accent] My underboobs are sweating.

OK, my sweaty little pantsweater! [beat] “Pant sweater” not “pants wetter”.

Mmmmm, body smells. Body smells in close quarters! [lip smacking noises] Delicious.

Ugh. Let's get out of this sweaty little box!

H.R. Owen

If you're looking to take your podcast from “good” to “great”, you need to start with your vocal performance. Weed out problem areas such as poor pronunciation, shaky accents, or inconsistent character voices.

Hero Bloopers

[indeterminate accent] Oh, so many voices in this one. Not everybody gets a voice. Some of them just get bad David Tennant impressions.

[in the Presenter's voice] You ask what the rules- [normal voice] Oh God. She's back. [possibly French accent] The letter R!

If I'm bein' unreasonable- [country accent] Bein'? Ooh, 'ello.

[high voice] I met my girlfriend just- Ooh, hi! Yoo hoo! Yoo hoo, lesbians!

[London accent] Picked him up at the market that [Northern accent] afternoon. [stronger Northern accent] Afternoon?! 'Ey up! Hold the [bleep]-ing phone, this podcaster's from t'North!

[in the Presenter's voice] You might hire a pwoffessional applai- [flubbering. Then, in normal voice] I can't say the letter R!

[in the Presenter's voice] Whether you've recently acquired flight or are just looking to [Northern accent] brush up on your- [Southern accent] Brush up on your skills... Or are just- Just- [slowly and clearly in an exaggeratedly Southern accent] Just looking to brush up... Brush- [Northern accent] Brush- Brush up- [beat. Then, in normal voice] I should have made the Presenter Northern, really.

[in the Presenter's voice] You might hire a perfessional- [lisping] Pwoffessional.

[voice a little wobbly] Recently, I moved in- [singing a wobbly note] Wooo!

[in the Presenter's voice] Besides, it reaches him precisely the wrong lesson. Ruh. Vruh.

[clipped, energetic voice] I'll get straight to the point, I think. [normal voice] OK, I like that energy but... Pitch it up. Head voice. Hoi! [hoiking sounds. Then, higher than before] I'll get straight to the point, I think.

[in the Presenter's voice] As a kind of jigsaw puzzle. [normal voice] How do Southerners say “puzzle”?! [in the Presenter's voice] Puzzle. As a kind of jigsaw puzzle.

[Northern accent] People always expect me to be a- Ooh, I've gone Northern. I'm meant to be from London. [stronger Northern accent] I'm from London town! [posh London accent] London. London, London, London. But I'm not posh [transitioning to Cockney] I'm just a regular guy. [exaggeratedly Cockney] Awight. Awight, Mistah. [squeaky voice] Oi, Mistah! Touch ya todger for a pound, mistah? Are you me dad?

I think I should be allowed to opt out of the letter R, on mental health grounds. [baby voice] Is embarrassin'. Don't want to do it. Makes me look silly.

H.R. Owen

Fortunately, you will by now be well used to performing in the voices of long-standing, recurring characters such as your protagonist, and will be able to slip into their voice like putting on an old, comfortable coat.

Hero Bloopers [in the Presenter voice unless otherwise indicated]

[voice cracking] There's good news here. Whoo hoo hoo!

It's not easy, to find out you've been accident'ly off- [country accent] Accident'ly?!

[struggling to reach the lower regisiter on the word “pride”] And find someone who can stand beside you with pride- With pride- With pri- With- Eh- And find someone who can stand beside you with pride. That's the best we're gonna get.

It's almost two o'clock on Thursday morning, and time for a very special edition [voice cracking repeatedly] of our- Of our- Oh God, [bleep] me, Jesus Christ.

[voice cracking] Congratulations- Mmm! [to the tune of Wouldn't It Be Nice by The Beach Boys] Wouldn't it be nice if I could talk right!

First this evening, a listener whose authenticity is being challenged online. Ooh! [laughing] Too sexy!

You'd think they'd have the decency to give it up [dodgy accent] after you left the country. [Belfast accent] After. Where the [bleep] are you from? I'm the Presenter. [stronger accent and lisping slightly] I'm the Presenter of the Nightfolk Network, so I am.

[voice cracking] I wonder- Ooh! I wonder where my [bleep]-ing voice has gone!

The problem here, listener, is that there's a hard- [voice straining] Ooh I've gone to a weird place in my throat and I can't get out! [laughing]

You just have to get to your [voice failing] answer. [dry gasp]

H.R. Owen

As your podcast grows, you may even find new avenues of income opening to you, such as advertising. We'll hear more on this after this words from our sponsors.

Hero Bloopers

The Nightfolk Network. In association with... Icarus. Schmicarus. Flying school. [laughter]

In association with Speccy More Eyes. Designer glasses [laughing] for the multiply occular.

Untraceable and untrackable by even the most modern- [flubbering]

Kringle-based entrapment- [bleep] me, Sophie! [laughing] How do you expect me to say something like that with a straight face?!

For the perfect bite sni- [little voice] 's bite snized.

The Nightfolk Network. In association with- [coughing and choking. Then, in a silly voice] In association with the Plague.

Proud sponsors of the Nightfolk Network. [flubbering]

A-are we ready? OK. This is take one. Let's see. [deep breath] Ever wondered how much wood would a woodchuck chuck if a woodchuck could chuck wood? Get transformed into a woodchuck, and find out today at Chuck's Wood Chuckers. Located next to Sally's Seashore Seashell Store. Proud members of the Nightfolk Network. Warning: once transformed we cannot return you to your human state. Please read the terms and conditions carefully. [beat] [bleep]! Mother [bleep]-er! Fu- [laughing] I'm dabbing, you can't see, you- One, two, three! [unmistakable sounds of dabbing] That was me dabbing. That was me dabbing because I'm that [bleep]-ing good. You [bleep]-ing come for me, Art! You [bleep]-ing, you tried it! You tried it. Having none of your nonsense today, Art. You came up and you said, [mockingly] “Ooh, I'm gonna write a silly advert and it's gonna [bleep] 'em up.” Well who [bleep]-ed up now, huh? Who [bleep]-ed up now? [growl, and a clunk]

H.R. Owen

It can be difficult to push yourself as an artist when working alone. Fortunately, there is a whole community of other creatives just waiting for the chance to collaborate. This is an excellent chance to make new friends, as well as benefiting from the professionalism and artistry of your fellow podcasters.

Naomi Clarke

Stock it with some most- most- [flubbering]

Jonathan Tilley

You see, not only did the scrawny little [Siri bleeps in the background] solicitor I'd left in my castle live to tell the tale, but he and the lady I'd been seeing happened to know each other.


Is there something else I can help with?

Dom Guilfoyle

Gosh, you look different in the- No, that's... Gosh, you look different- [dissatisfied hum] Overthinking it now.

You can just call me the CE- You can just call me the CEO. [beat] You can just- Nope, I'm gonna start this whole section over again.

Hero Blooper

Dom is the creator of The Mistholme Museum of Mystery, Morbidity and Mortality, a podcast whose title I have to Google search every time I write it.

Matty O.K. Smith

OK, I hope that was OK. Um. Real quick. And... thank you so much, Hero, you are a real cool- You're a cool real person, really.

H.R. Owen

Do choose your guests wisely, however. Poor decision-making in the casting process could lead to frustration as unprofessional actors fail to bring the proper gravity to your beloved recurring characters.

Elizabeth Plant

Are you... doing anything on Monday? [flustered voice] Wha-? N-n-no. W-w-why?

Sophie B.

[in the Presenter's voice] Good luck, listener. [in normal voice] I can get as deep as you. I can't. I can't, I don't have the range.

I made myself a tea with some honey in it and it's not really doing its job, I feel like the tea is- the, the tannins in the tea are coating- coating the tongue. The tongue, the teeth and the lips! [lip trills] Mah!

Elizabeth Plant

Would you like to get dinner with me? [flustered] Oh my God. I think I just fell in love with myself a little bit there. [laughs]

Just kiss, you [bleep]-ing idiots! [despairing] Just kiss!

Sophie B.

Backlog, obliterated. Ubligation- Uh-Ubligation, uh-bligation.

Elizabeth Plant

Excuse me, what the [bleep] is that? Who is [laughing] blasting R&B outside? Can you not?!

Sophie B.

Presenting! S- Presenting, presenting. Presenting! Pre-e-e-esenting! [laughter]

Elizabeth Plant

And I asked myself why on earth there might be a pot plant where my previou- [flubbering] Shit.

Sophie B.

You messed this up about as much as it is physically possible to mess something up. [sniff] I- Oh, big sniff there! [sniffing and coughing] Oh and that'll be lovely for you to listen to, I'm sure.

Elizabeth Plant

[German accent] Und once more for luck.

Sophie B.

I've got phlegm. Hang on. I've got phlegm. Oh God, it's all going wrong.

Elizabeth Plant

[whining] I can't read!

Sophie B.

[singing to an improvised tune] Sophie, slow down. Sophie, you're going too fast! [humming] You're going too fast and the sibilance is killin' ya.

Elizabeth Plant

Beep beep beep beep beep beep beep.

Bleep blorp. Merry Christmas.

Sophie B.

You're gettin' all my best sounds now!

Elizabeth Plant

I'm going to name her [mispronounced] Angharad! [whining] Am I saying it right? Mum! Dad! Help me!

Sophie B.

Monstrous Agonies. Episode Seventy. I don't know why my episode couldn't have been Sixty Nine. I would have really enjoyed that.

Elizabeth Plant

Oh, if you're sick, go home! If you're not, stop complaining. [beat] Now kiss!

Sophie B.

I really wanna read that line quickly but I'm gonna do it again. I need to bring the (Not) Getting Married Today energy. That's a musical reference, it's Sondheim. Anyone who loves musicals, if you put this in the outtakes, will be like, “Yes, I know exactly what you're talking about,” but you, my dearest Hero, are like, [mockingly] “I don't know what that is! Musicals are fake! Blah blah blah!”

Elizabeth Plant

It's fine, darling, I compang- [flubbering] Shut up. You stupid little lesbian.

Sophie B.

Best book in the world, it'll make you laugh, it'll make you cry, it is of course... [beat] W-was I supposed to think of a book?

Elizabeth Plant

[pained] Look at them!! Look at them!!

Sophie B.

Why did I eat a chocolate before I needed to do this? [laughter] Why was I like, mm, yeah, let's coat it. Let's coat that throat!

Elizabeth Plant

Yes, they're gone. Effortless dismount, might I say? [laughing] That's what she's going to be saying later!

Sophie B.

Get away from me. There's a fly. [urgently] There's a fly.

Elizabeth Plant

[snorting inhale] OK. [sighing] That's enough, uh, for tonight, Liz.

Sophie B.

[singing a bluesy guitar riff] Bluesy guitar riff.

H.R. Owen

A word of warning, here. There is a danger that your success in voice acting could lead you to believe yourself capable of pursuing other vocal talents. Do yourself a favour and resist this misguided belief.

Hero Bloopers

[to the tune of When You Were Young by the Killers, in a kind of American country voice] And he doesn't look a thing like Jesus but he talks like a gentleman, like you imagined when you were [voice failing] young.

[to the tune of Kielbasa by Tenacious D] Tenacious D time, mother [bleep]-er, yeah!

[singing to an improvised tune] I need to be greasy. Oh I long to be greased. How I long to be greasy.

[to the tune of Dogs of War by The Sensational Alex Harvey Band, and in a Scottish accent] Whosoever... touches one hair... on yon... grey... head... [mouth guitar sounds] dies like a dog.

Oh, Mab and the Presenter karaoke. Who sings what?

[to the tune of White Wedding by Billy Idol]I've been inside for so long,

so long. I've been alone for so long. It's a nice day for a, a pandemic. It's a nice day to lock down again.

[singing a bluesy guitar riff]

[to the tune of Let Me Drown by Orville Peck] And I won't be kind since I lost my mind. And this town just ain't big enough for the both of us now, let me drown- [speaking] I could be a [bleep]-ing cowboy. I could be a sexy cowboy boy. Cow cow boy boy. Cow cow boy boy. Bon bon bon bon.

[Hero humming and attempting to beatbox No Limit by 2 Unlimited]

[to the tune of Don't Let Me Be Misunderstood by Nina Simone, and in the Presenter's voice] I'm just a soul whose intentions are good. Oh lord, please don't let me be misunderstood. [speaking] Singing in the Presenter voice sounds like you're doing a bad Elvis impression. [in the Presenter's voice] Thank you very much. Uh huh huh.

[to the tune of Fuck Her Gently by Tenacious D] What's your favourite dish? Not gonna cook it but I'll order it from Zanzibar! [laughter]

[singing to an improvised tune] That's the wrong episode, that's the script for the wrong episode. I've already made that episode. It's time to make the other episode.

H.R. Owen

Above all though, the best thing you can do to grow your podcast is trust your instincts and embrace your own creativity. In short: don't be afraid to get a little weird.

Hero Bloopers

[creaky throat noises, repeated. Then laughter. Throaty honk] Clearin' my throat. [honk] I'm just clearin' my throat. [honk, and laughter]

Episode Fifty Four of Monstrous Agonies- Fifty Four, mother [bleep]-ers!

[hands being rubbed together. Then, quiet and close to the microphone] Delicious.


Boys kissin' boys. Boy kissin' boys kissin' boys kissin' me kissin' boys kissin' boys kissin' boys kissin' me kissin' boys kissin' boys kissin' boy's kissin' me kissin' Darth Maul. [beat] That's my internal monologue at all times.

Hello- [burp, then a gargly moan]

Episode Forty Nine of Monstrous Agonies was written and performed by H.R. Owen. That's me!

You can support Monstrous Agonies- [blows a raspberry]

[rhythmic mouth sounds]

[in the voice of a cartoon Bostonian who smokes 50 a day] You're listening to the Nightfolk Network. Everywhere, every when, on 131.3FM. [laughter]

[repeated in the same intonation] Kind regards. Kind regards. Kind regards. [laughter] Kind regards. Kind regards. Oh I'm gonna be doing that all day now! Kind regards.Kind regards. Kind regards. Kind regards. Kind regards. [laughter] Kind regards. Ooh, I've gone up a bit. Kind regards. Kind regards. Kind regards. Kind regards. Kind. Kind regards. Kind. Kind regards. Regards-gards. Kind regards. Kind. Kind. Kind regards. Kind regards. Kind regards-gards. Kind. Gards. Kind. Kind regards.

[dodgy New York accent] Whaddya take me for, some kinda neurotypical?

[on a wobbly note] Uuaaerrhh!

Tonight's second letter is from a listener under pressure to move with the times. Chugga-chugga-chugga-chugga-chugga-chugga-chugga-chugga-chugga-chugga-chugga-chugga-chugga-choo choo! Ooh, I'm a sexy murder train! [laughter]

Well that's not making it into the [bleep]-ing blooper reel. [whispering] And you'll never know what it was.

[bleep] off, listener.

[deep sigh] Goodness me.

Kind regards.

H.R. Owen

You're well on your way to podcasting success. Keep up the hard work, and best of luck for the future!

[Title music: slow, bluesy jazz. It plays throughout the closing credits.]

H.R. Owen

Monstrous Agonies will be back to its regular schedule in a few weeks time. Follow us on Tumblr, @MonstrousAgonies, or on Twitter, @Monstrous_Pod, to keep up to date with announcements and news.

Submissions are still closed for the time being, but keep an eye on our social media accounts to find out when they reopen for Season Three.

You can support the show by sharing with your friends and familiars, making a monthly pledge at

Hero Bloopers

or make a one-off donation at What was I gonna say, “makeshift Owen”?

H.R. Owen

Or make a one-off donation at

This podcast is distributed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License. The theme tune is Dakota by Unheard Music Concepts.

[Music fades out]

Thanks for listening, and remember--

Hero Bloopers

The real monsters- [laughing] The real monsters are my tongue! [slurp]

The real monsters are the billionaires, that it's OK to kill and eat!

The real monsters are the [bleep]-ing itchy nose! Itchy nose goblins! [scratching sounds] Gah!

The real monsters are people who build a [bleep]-ing house next to a [bleep]-ing airport. [bleep]'s sake!

Thanks for listening, and remember – the real monsters are the friends we made on the way, who we rope in to doing our podcast with us. [laughter]


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