Elaine Clark VO November Newsletter

Audiobook Craze

Here’s Newsletter #7. If you missed the first six, go to ElaineClarkVO.com/News • Plus, check out my ElaineClarkVO website • @ElaineClarkVODemos talent database • Real Talking Tips podcast •  There’s Money Where Your Mouth Is & Voice-Overs For Podcasting books • and Activate Your Voice & Adding Melody to Your Voice apps.

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This year, I had the honor of judging the Society of Voice Arts and Sciences [SOVAS] Audiobook Narration - Best Voiceover Award. Each nominee had three sections for Jurors to assign a number ranking.  These were CLARITY, PERFORMANCE, and ENGAGEMENT. While I might have simplified the titles, it’s my memory and I’m sticking with it. 


For the most part, the submissions were anonymous.  After listening to 52 audiobook samples in a variety of categories, the area that (I believe) had the most room for improvement was engagement.  So, I came up with my own ranking system.


SFX: drum roll  🥁🥁🥁

INTRODUCING  

Elaine Clark’s Guide to Audience Engagement


Speakers and Narrators have 3 audience engagement choices:

  1. Speaking AT

  2. Speaking TO

  3. Speaking WITH

These three speech engagement styles are based on the relationship with the listener.  

  1. ‘AT’ is direct and unapproachable.  

  2. ‘TO’ is direct with emotion and empathy sprinkled in.  

  3. “WITH’ is a dialog with an individual or group.

All three styles are necessary and should be the narrator’s choice rather than arbitrary.  Below are reasons why and when you might use one or more of these performance engagement styles.  

🎙️ Speaking ‘AT’

Speaking at someone creates a distance or barrier between the speaker and listener. There’s little or no room for discussion or compromise.  It’s AUTHORITATIVE information that is expected to be received at face value and acted on as directed.  Often, the speaker believes they are superior, more informed, or of a higher status level.

 Speaking ‘TO’

Speaking to someone is a more CASUAL, AUTHORITATIVE style.  The intention is to share and receive information and ideas.  There’s a proper ‘business-like’ distance between the speaker and listener.  

  Speaking ‘WITH’

Speaking with someone creates a real or implied dialog with the listener.  There’s a shared familiarity with the characters, locations, and situations.  Speaking with a person or group promotes active listening, empathy, and imagination.  It allows the listener to put themselves in the story rather than observing from a distance.

🎙️ Speaking AT… TO… or WITH… Your Audience.

If you’re thinking about narrating books, check out ACX to find the style and book length that best suits your personality, performance strengths, time, budget, and audio engineering capabilities.  Audiences love it, too, when you remove mouth noises and triple check word pronunciations.  

🎙️ Know what isn’t an Audiobook? 🎙️Elaine Clark’s Real Talking Tips Podcast

🎙️ Need a REAL Voice-Over Talent or REEL Demo Producer?

ElaineClarkVO.com - Demo Production and Voice-Over Talent Database

@ElaineClarkVO YouTube Talent Database

Click below to hear more demos that I produced.  Plus, how this exciting free ElaineClarkVO VO talent database can be used by casting directors, agents & producers.  

Contact me at:  elaineclarkvo.com/contact or by email: elaineclarkvo@gmail.com.

Check Out Elaine Clark’s Books & Apps!  


Voice-Overs for Podcasting
is available as an Audiobook!


There’s Money Where Your Mouth Is
has audiobook scripts and interviews with top narrators!


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