How to get started with audiobook narration
While the majority of our work in Epic Sound is in audio for games, film, television and product sound, we’ve also grown to become one of Denmark’s largest studios for audiobook recordings, with hundreds of titles recorded so far.
One of the questions we often get is: How do you, as an external voice actor, break into audiobook narration?
Well, if you’re an experienced voice actor, put together a reel that shows off your narrating skills and submit it. You can send it to us, and to publishers who specialize in audiobook production. They are usually the ones deciding what voice actor should be working on a given title.
But if you haven’t got a lot of experience in voice acting or narration, what’s the best way of getting started?
I usually recommend that budding audiobook narrators head over to a site called Librivox.org to hone their skills. Librivox is a volunteer project where books that are in the public domain (ie the copyright has expired) are recorded, and anyone can download and listen to the results for free. Everyone can join, and you can record in whatever language you want.
Librivox.org is a great way of getting the hang of narrating, and, ultimately, finding out if audiobook narration is your thing after all. They also have forums to help guide you along the way.
And a great bonus of getting involved with Librivox is that not only do you gain valuable experience in narration, you can also use the best bits of your recordings for that all-important voice-over demo reel.
As for equipment, you’ll of course get the best results by recording in a proper studio with a technician at hand, but if you’re just starting out, you can also get some usable results from setting up a small recording space at home or elsewhere. Peachpit has a fine guide to picking the right tools for podcasting – and many of these suggestions also apply to audiobook recording.
Oh, and while you’re here, you’re very welcome to pop on over to the demo section and check out some of our audio work – do have a listen!