June Came and June Went…

What the heck just happened? The month of June just sort of disappeared in a vortex of VO work. Which is a good thing, but makes it hard to find the time to compose something interesting, relevant or amusing as a blog post.

And that is the goal of keeping a blog – at least as I understand it.

My class blog is easier to keep up to date, but can become a tad boring and even repetitive for people who are not active students in the class. If there was a way to filter OUT the homework assignments, and only keep the interesting videos and articles that would be different, but I haven’t figured out a way to do that yet.

One of the things I talk to my introduction to voice acting students is that just because you are hired to record […]

Who will decide who comes in first in the ISDN Alternative Race – talent or studio?

There has been a LOT of buzz lately about the death of ISDN as a connection method for solid distance recording between talent and studio. New lines are impossible to get in certain parts of the United States (primarily on the East Coast at the moment) and the cost for the lines is skyrocketing in other parts of the country. The cost for my lines has remained steady for the past several years, but each month when the pre-paid bill arrives, I open the envelope with trepidation.

There are now several potential replacements for ISDN, which will at some point no longer be an optionSoundStreakipDTL, and Source-Connect NOW.

So far, I have “invested” in ipTDL and Source-Connect. Should I add SoundStreak too? Yes, I probably should. Will another technology come along that blows them […]

2018-02-06T06:48:07+00:00 May 25th, 2014|Categories: Business, Technology|Tags: , , , |

Success is all in your head – and maybe in the ear of the listener

I have had a bunch of cool things happen in the past year or so. It hasn’t been all rainbows and sunshine, but that is what makes life interesting.

Business has been good. I found that balance of marketing, work and another word that starts with “f” – Facebook. No, fun! (OK, maybe both Facebook and fun.) And I think my work has improved too.

A Free-lance Life for Me
For someone who is and always has been risk averse, you might wonder why I chose to be an independent business person where there is no steady paycheck.

Actually, because most of the people who read this blog are voiceover people too – or independent business people – you probably know the answer.

I don’t think I chose it, actually. My first real job was at a TV station in Iowa. I was a part-time graphic artist in the days just before computers and character […]

Is a monthly blog enough?

Just squeaking in under the wire to get a post completed before the end of March…

I don’t know about you, but this has been a very busy month – filled with many highs and a few lows. Moments of self-doubt. Moments of reaffirmation. Moments of utter confusion. And moments of crystal clarity. Invoicing for large $$. Writing checks for large $$ for taxes.

Pretty much a normal month, I guess…but I did find myself starting a post more than once and simply abandoning it to something else, promising myself that I would return to the keyboard and write something brilliant.

Best laid plans!

So, to return to the question at hand. Is it worth keeping a blog alive if you only post once a month or so? Or will that actually be detrimental to social media standings. I don’t know the answer to that and frankly, my blog isn’t all that popular, so […]

2018-02-06T06:48:07+00:00 March 30th, 2014|Categories: Musings, Technology|

Brain freeze

So, how is 2014 shaping up for you?

The rugged winter is certainly presenting challenges for my friends who live in the Arctic blast zone. I really haven’t heard a lot of whining though, so they must be a heartier stock of human than I. When I lived in Iowa and Indiana, I KNOW I was a whiner. Especially when I was in grad school trying to be stylish, because I was doing some on-camera work for WTIU. I wore thin leather coats and un-insulated boots with slick leather soles. Scraping the ice off the windows in that get-up was a numbing experience.

When I was in college in Cedar Rapids Iowa, there was not even the slightest attempt to be stylish – dark blue parkas with bright orange fuzzy lining in the hoods. Heavy boots. While I wasn’t much of an outdoor winter sports enthusiast, I don’t remember being cold walking […]

2018-02-06T06:48:07+00:00 February 22nd, 2014|Categories: Musings|

Did you make any New Year’s Resolutions?

That planning thing I mentioned in my last post – that’s still a plan, but after Kara Edwards posted that she was going to take a photo every day, I decided that I would draw a little picture every day. I’m up to day 5 and so far so good. Last night I was having dinner after a hike and decided to draw day 4’s picture on the napkin at the restaurant. (Day 3 is hidden under Day 5.)

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It has been a heck of a year for a lot of people and the past few months have seen loss after loss. Some losses come with a sense of relief – that suffering is over. Some losses come with outrage and disbelief. Some come with pain and terrible sorrow. If someone you know has […]

2018-02-06T06:48:08+00:00 January 5th, 2014|Categories: Musings|

A Plan for the Future

I think I have mentioned it before, but I have never really planned anything significant in my life. It has been one foot in front of the other with common sense, curiosity and initiative forging a steady yet unexpected path.

Last year, my new year’s resolution was to start to plan. By that I didn’t mean a business plan or a marketing plan, though I am constantly reminded by my compadres, blogs, experts that I should probably do that – especially a marketing plan.

No, it meant planning to meet people for dinner, or the movies, or a dinner party. Yes, that basic people kind of planning. My usual MOO (method of operation) is to be hard a work doing whatever I do all day and suddenly look up at the clock and realize that it is about 4 PM and wouldn’t it be nice to go out to dinner with someone? […]

2018-02-06T06:48:08+00:00 December 29th, 2013|Categories: Business, Marketing, Musings|

Never Assume – and you know why…

I don’t know about you, but when I get busy, and I start to tackle a new project that – on the surface – resembles so many of my other projects, I tend to slip into auto-pilot mode. I just KNOW what the producer wants. Well, maybe. Maybe not. Remember that old adage – “never assume – because it makes an ass out of you and me?” Slipping into what has been called Stage Four Learning can sometimes mean getting a project off on the wrong foot. Sometimes it can mean losing a client.

Here is a quick refresher on the Four Stages of Learning…

  1. Unconsciously incompetent
    You don’t understand how to do something – and probably don’t even realize that you don’t know how to do it. Relating this to voiceover work – you have been told you should be doing voiceover work, but you don’t know anything about the business, or […]

2018-02-06T06:48:08+00:00 December 8th, 2013|Categories: Business, Musings|

I Have 3 Lawn Mowers and 5 Mics

Scattered in the storage area behind the garage are three (yes, I said 3) lawn mowers. Two gas mowers and an electric mower. None of them work. Well, one can be coaxed into mowing, if you know the secret sequence of events that involves lots of starter fluid sprayed in the spark plug socket and the carburetor in just the right order. Only one person knows how to do that.

I should probably get rid of all three of them and get one that works right the first time you yank on the starter.

I have two weed whackers. One is gas powered and I don’t think that one works. The battery operated whacker works, but not for very long on a charge. That one I got on Craig’s List.

I had a couple of loppers to cut the branches off the fig tree every year in August when the figs have turned […]

2018-02-06T06:48:08+00:00 December 1st, 2013|Categories: Business, Marketing, Musings, Negotiating, Recording, Technology|

Give it away, give it away now

The Red Hot Chili Peppers’ “Give It Away” has a couple of lyrics that make me think about the way I live my life and do business. I’m pretty lucky to be doing what I am doing and make a living at it. Still looking to spend more time on the dancin’ part of it, and better do that soon before my agility runs out.

“Lucky me swimmin’ in my ability. Dancin’ down on life with agility.”

At least I am interpreting these lyrics in this way. Not being the type of person who plans, but someone who has a bit of common sense and intuition, I ended up being able to carve out a living doing something that I enjoy. In fact, enjoy to the point where I don’t really consider it work. This gets to be an issue when I don’t take the time to dance.

Later on in the song, we […]

2018-02-06T06:48:08+00:00 November 22nd, 2013|Categories: Business, Negotiating|Tags: , |