Saturday, May 15, 2010

What Voice Over Talents Talk About Most

Here are the topics that voice performers (voice over talents) discuss the most. The answers never are (or will be) definitive. The verdict's always 'out.' We might as well discuss 'how many angels could sit on the head of a pin' or 'how many individual M and M candies have I eaten in my lifetime so far. Anyway...just had to blog on this.

Rehash after rehash on dozens upon dozens of websites and blogs and nothing ever gets resolved. Why? Because every person and his or her voice and every person's business operation and every person's needs for an income, large to small, and every person's emotional and physical personality is unique. Thus, none of these topics which I deem to be "the most discussed" will ever be 'solved' but only discussed. There is a difference. So stop expecting answers. There are none.

Now here's my list, as I see it--the most-discussed topics voice over talents talk about:
  1. What to charge a client when the voice talent has to budget a job.
  2. Whether the online pay-to-play sites are good or bad and which site is the best one.
  3. Various voice potions and pills and folk remedies and old wives' tales one should gargle or swallow to (sometimes magically) make one's voice heal faster after damage or sound better. (Few if any of these are worth the money you spend on them. Stop abusing your voice and take better care of it and consult your ear nose throat physician more often!)
  4. How do I know if my voice is good enough to be a voice over professional?
  5. What should my voice over demo sound like?
  6. Is my current demo good, bad, or just plain awful?
  7. Why aren't I making more money at this?
  8. How can I start learning audio engineering (and be good at it in a week . . .)
  9. Why is there a buzz or knock or clang in my home recording studio?
  10. How can I get signed by agents who book me?
  11. How can I get audio book narration jobs (or movie trailer jobs, commercial jobs, any kind of job . . .) and why don't I win more auditions on the pay-to-play websites?
  12. How long will it take me to get rich?
  13. How do I know when it's time to quit this crazy endeavor?
  14. Should I study with this or that teacher or spend my money on this or that convention?
  15. How can I promote myself without spending any money on it?
  16. How can I make a demo for a very cheap price?
  17. How can I stop being depressed about my voice over career?
  18. When can I quit my day job?
  19. How do some talents make so much money and I hardly ever have a voiceover job?
  20. Why didn't I do this years before now?
Well, there it is folks. Read 'em and weep (or chuckle) and keep on keepin' on. Most people give up too soon. Stick with it. This is my 34th year as a voice over and studio singer professional and coach and I feel as if I've never worked a day in my life (except once, when I was Creative Director at a production house where we worked 24/7 with no overtime and no benefits! I resigned, but not soon enough, and went back to my freelance career as a voice, a teacher, a consultant, a recording studio owner, audio engineer, audio producer, and general all-around good broad.

All best...
Hope this helps.
Bettye Zoller

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