This group is BUSINESS...where are the jobs today that pay narrators? Who has these jobs? What are the sources we might contact with a demo to get narration jobs? Sure, we can talk about narration techniques too...
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A thought from Bettye.... You are entering the PUBLISHING INDUSTRY. Learn about it!

You must have a killer audio book demo to get paying work in this field especially from PUBLISHERS. You also must separate jobs you do on your own in your home studio from voicing for publishers, often in their studios. When you read for publishers, the pay is better and you often don't do the audio engineering. Mostly, they prefer readers in their own studios. The audio book jobs advertised on the online pay to play sites are usually from vanity publishers or the authors themselves or for other reasons...not publishing house jobs. Know the difference. And get used to the fact that audio books usually pay for THE FINISHED AUDIO HOUR. How long will it take you to get one finished audio hour that is perfect? That depends....could be two studio hours could be twenty studio hours with you engineering and voicing it too! Be very cautious on your price bidding.
Bettye Zoller

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  • The first requirement to get hired as an audio book narrator is to have a fabulous audio book CD demo and then send it with cover letter to publishers everywhere in this audio book field. Separate out the type of publisher they are: Childrens, self-help, religious, sports, female oriented, westerns etc. and then in your cover letter tell them why you feel you would fit what they publish. Ideally, and if you have a studio you do this yourself, you assemble for example Children's Cuts or a few Religious readings and send it along too showing how you do these. This is in addition to your general audio book demo which will contain literature excerpts of many genres. See? Target. Don't scatter shoot.

    Hope this helps

    My audio book day in Dallas is April 3 Sunday and will not be a day of copyreading,  but rather, vital business stuff although I will instruct in script interp in the literature field.

  • So do we just "cold call" these audio book publishers?
  • This is very useful.  Thank you.
  • One of my coaches during my graduate theatre study years spent one entire semester training us on switching between the "narrator" and "character voices." At first, this was very difficult for me but soon I improved. Also, I notice in my recording studio that some narrators have the annoying habit of speaking more softly as "narrator." It's not volume...it's tone of voice and voice attitude.
  • A narrator is just that...a storyteller reading a work of literature. Your style must fit the literature style. No one is good at every type. What's your type? If you don't know yet, you need to find out. Attend an audio book seminar or consult with a coach to determine this. More than one coach or seminar is always best. Train train train.
  • Do you know your niche? Find it. For example, are you great at being a cowboy or wrangler in the Old West or Texas good old boy? Are you a light voiced teen sound or a great young mom sound? Are you good at elderly approaches or older voices? Are your characters fabulous? Show them. But always make sure what you show is world class, the best, amazing. Get opinions from experts on what demo shows.
  • Ideally, you'll have more than one audio book demo to solicit publishers to hire you. For example, children's lit. for those who publish it; non-fiction only for publisher in that realm; historical older novels for those who publish it; Religious works, inspirational, meditation, See how this works? If you have your own studio, put these together yourself and send appropriate demo to each who might hire you.
  • My webinar Feb 8 featuring Robin Whitten, founder editor AudioBooks. http://conta.cc/AudBks2011 join us. Question time too. Robin is a pioneer in this industry and has amazing information to impart to you. Our phone conversation to prep for the webinar was truly wonderful. I learned so much from her in a short call. Don't miss it. Sponsor is Voiceoerxtra and you enroll with them. Click link.
  • Hey everyone, Joe Loesch is one of our greatest treasures. Voice coach, fab demo creator, audio book expert, and I'm so jazzed about teaching with Joe who has been my friend so long and colleague but this is our first workshop teaching together. Hope you come join in. All day Saturday Jan 29 at The Actors School in Nashville. Voice coaching, publisher lists nationwide who are hiring, so much more. And if you want private hour in Nashville with me to discuss your concerns, ideas, book it. My site has details but you enroll in the seminar on The Actors School site. I love Nashville and so excited!!!!
  • Bettye, Looking forward to teaching with you on the 29th here in Nashville! Getting everything in place...having the red carpet cleaned and ready to roll out for you. The Press is on standby. I'll contact you directly about specifics. Can't wait to see you!
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