Archive for November 2013

The Towel Needs Washing

towels-in-washing-machineI’ve been posting this blog nearly every week since I started a couple years ago. I’ve shared with you my tips, my thoughts, opinions, some of my experiences going to various voice over events, and anything and everything I’ve thought would interest you. As many other people have said, writing a regularly posted blog is pretty much a second job. I have to create content on a regular basis and try to make it interesting, sometimes funny, and useful in some way.

I’m not ‘throwing in the towel’ by any means–I enjoy writing to you guys very much, and I often get people who email or call me, or come up to me at events and tell me how much they’ve enjoyed my postings or found something useful. (One reader actually translated my post into Portuguese so she could share it!)

But I need a short break. I want to recharge my creative writing batteries, and have a fresh start in the New Year with new content, new perspective, and even more useful and interesting things to say to all of you. My goal is to use this time to polish my words and think about my writing process, to make this blog better than ever and a resource for those in the voice over community. So I will say here see you later, best to you all, and I look forward to writing to you again! 🙂

A Virtual Assistant’s Diary: Editing!

twisted-wave2x300This is a service that I hesitated to write about until now. The reason being, my intention with this blog series was to highlight the services I do that are not this. But, I do occasionally get asked if I’m an editor as well as the other things that I do. Now, first, I should clarify that I’m an editor, not an engineer. I am skilled and practiced at adjusting pacing, removing mouth noise, creating slides, and other such basic tasks. I don’t do any sort of processing to the audio except for a general de-noise. This is mostly because all the work I do has kept me busy enough that I haven’t had time to practice and be confident with it. It’s important to me to not offer a service that I’m not 100% sure that I can do, and do well.

This entry is also not about a specific client, since I’ve done editing for quite a few people since I got started. Much of it has been either audiobooks or e-learning of one kind or another. It never ceases to amaze me how much variation there is in the requirements people have. Every book I have done and every bit of e-learning has been a little different, not only between clients but between different projects per client. But experience has taught me the series of questions that I can ask to outline those. With each project I always do my best to turn it around before the deadline, and with care and dedication applied to each piece of audio.

A Virtual Assistant’s Diary: Proofing!

Kid-ReadingI’ve done this particular service for a number of clients, and often in conjunction with editing their audiobooks. It’s a habit at this point, and how I was trained by my Dad, Bob Souer. Dad home grew his assistants, and the lessons he taught (and is still teaching me) have stood me in good stead as I’ve built up my business.

But to the specifics-proofing! Two clients I’ve done this job for have been Darla Middlebrook and Barry Campbell. Both are very fine audiobook narrators, and have both used me for several books. The way our projects go are pretty simple–they get me edited files via Dropbox, I crank up the playback speed and zip through the books. I’ve always read pretty fast and have a pretty high reading comprehension level, which allows me (with a great deal of practice) to get a lot of the mistakes in an audiobook. I won’t claim to get everything, my eyes skip things sometimes, but I get a great deal. I send the marked script (highlighted mistakes with time signatures) to my clients, and they usually handle their own drop ins. (I can and have done this for people, it just saves a step so most people don’t ask me.) It’s simple, it’s quick, and it makes my narrators look great for their clients, since the product that they hand in is cleaner and more correct.

I love all of my work, but proofing is something I particularly enjoy. I blame genetics, as my mother was a book editor for a living!

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