The Hits host Megan Banks chats to Mark Story about the pleasure and pain of life on air.

Given the high energy needed on air, how do you muster it at such an early hour?
Trying to muster the energy early is one of the biggest things I battle with. Particularly as I still have young children that have been known to wake up during the night! I find once I'm up it's okay with the help of coffee and the natural energy of the show but keeping my faculties about me in the afternoon and during that stressful dinner/bath/bed time is certainly always a battle and that's when you'll see my true character!

What was your first radio gig?
My first radio gig was as a copywriter at Radio Central in Alexandra. I arrived during their worst flood of the decade and pretty much went from writing commercials to doing live radio broadcasts in the space of 48 hours.

What's the best thing about radio?
I've been in radio now for over 20 years and still my biggest enjoyment of live radio is talking to our audience. I love finding out about people's lives and we're so lucky on The Hits Hawke's Bay that we get to meet some amazing people with incredible stories! I also love the fact that back in the day it didn't matter what you turned up to work wearing, but now we're producing video content almost daily so it has made me up my game a little when it comes to how much time I dedicate to laying out my clothes the night before.


Your worst on-air gaffe?
I have made many on-air gaffes and the older I get the more mistakes I'm tending to make which is depressing! With live radio things come out of your mouth sometimes without too much thought and it's incredibly embarrassing when you know you've used the wrong word and people text through to correct you. One mortifying moment was when I was reading the weather forecast once and I said "shattered scours" instead of scattered showers.

What's the biggest myth about the industry?
Probably the biggest myth about radio is that once your show is finished then you're done and dusted for the day. The reality is that every single segment of the show is planned, so after your live show finishes you are in planning mode for the next show. There's an incredible amount of work that goes into x4 hours of live radio to make it all sound completely off the cuff. People also think that we choose the music. I wish we did! My playlist would be a cross between Dolly Parton, Elton John, movie soundtracks and Ed Sheeran. My boss would kill me!