June is Audiobook Month, and this is Audiobook Week!
To celebrate, a number of audiobook narrators are posting short recordings today in the Going Public project.
This audio project is the brainchild of narrator Xe Sands. Each Friday, new audio is offered for free download. Xe describes the project as pieces
recorded purely for the joy of reading something that truly resonates with the narrator and then sharing that joy with others. Pieces are offered gratis on a weekly basis, without compensation of any sort either to the narrator or author.
The project is also a brilliant way to further perfect and market our voices and our talents as audiobook narrators!
Today, I’m presenting the short story “Black Thursday”. Author Melissa F. Miller graciously gave me permission to record her award-winning short story, which is the prequel to the suspense/thriller audiobook IRREPARABLE HARM.
In this story, first-year legal associate Sasha McCandless learns that her blessings come at a cost.
When performing audiobooks, one large part of the narrator’s job is the preliminary preparation. You need to pre-read a fiction book to know how the story flows and find clues about each character that will help you make good choices about their voice.
You also need to look up pronunciations of words. Since this short story dealt with a law firm, I needed to find out how to pronounce some legal terms.
I usually start by Googling “word pronunciation”, for example, “qui tam pronunciation”. Usually, dictionaries pop up first in the results, and I may quickly find what I need.
In this example, I found an interesting document from the American Bar Association which explains that lawyers differ on the pronunciation of qui tam. This material was an exciting find since it allowed me to further develop the character in my mind and decide which way he would say the phrase based on the back story I imagined for him.
Narrators Judith West and Heather Henderson collected and created an exceptional resource of pronunciation dictionaries and research techniques that is a treasure trove for any audiobook narrator: AudioEloquence.com
If you have some free time, take a listen to the contributions in Going Public. Like researching pronunciations for your book, you’ll never know what you’ll find!