A face made for audiobooks
May 14th, 2009 - 26 Comments
This is what I spent all day today doing.
It turns out that the publisher that bought the audio rights (they’re different than the book publisher) wanted to get this onto the market as quickly as possible using a professional voice actor. But I know you guys — and I talked to a ton of iwillteach readers on the media tour — and it would just be weird to have some dude reading my book. The publisher wasn’t convinced. It turns out that lots of authors think they should read their book, only to get in the studio and have the voice of the Kool-Aid Man after his bachelor party in Vegas. So get this: They made me audition by reading pages of my own book. This is when I knew I had not arrived.
Anyway, apparently it went ok, because I’m in studio for the next few days recording the audio book. I knocked out 65 pages today and the entire thing should be out in a few weeks. I’ll be releasing tons of audio excerpts as soon as I can.
Interesting notes about recording an audiobook:
- They typically estimate 3 minutes per page. I’m currently doing 2 minutes per page, about 4-6 hours/day
- Anytime there’s a mistake, we start on the prior sentence, rather than coming back later and re-recording
- There’s a separate set of audio editors and proofers who will literally compare every recorded word with the text in the book. If I ad-lib at all, a producer notes it so it’s not flagged as a mistake
- The microphone is extremely sensitive. “You know when you were on the radio for NPR?” they asked. “That was nothing compared to this mic.” If you crack your knuckles, it gets picked up clearly. If you move, the sound of your shirt gets picked up. I told them I’m going to wear a nylon track suit tomorrow to make them start crying.
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