My Week in Audio

This week has been all about speaking into a microphone.

I’ve been doing voiceovers, recordings, interviews… It couldn’t have been more varied.

Monday, after recording an airplane welcome message for a client, I ran back home to interview someone I met through Facebook, on teaching English as a foreign language. He was in Pennsylvania. This is one of the many interviews I’m doing with a view to including them in the podcast Spain Uncovered. Apart from learning how to interview people, that is, how to get them to tell their own story, I’m also getting over my fear of talking to strangers. Ah, you didn’t know that about me, did you…?

Tuesday morning also started with an interview, this time with Maya Middlemiss from Saros Consulting. Maya’s been running a virtual business for 14 years. She’s gone from setting up an enterprise in her front room to having 5 full-time employees and other associates. I had a great chat with her about how to recruit for a business like hers, which relies on independent people who are also willing and able to stay constantly in touch with other team members. This interview will be featured in the other podcast I’m working on, The World of Work is Changing. (But you’ll have to wait until October for that one.) Before the podcast is released, I’ll post the interview on the Virtual, not Distant site.

Tuesday evening ended with a very short voiceover session, where I, along with two other actors, had to pretend to be in the middle of a rural area selling chickens, pigs and salt.

Wednesday morning, instead of speaking into a mic, I spoke into a headset. I ran a webinar on Giving Feedback, as part of the work I do for IME. These webinars are really odd. I don’t see anyone and those attending only communicate with me via chat. So sometimes I go on and on, for ten minutes, talking about stuff. And then I ask, “Does anyone have any comments or questions?” Silence. Which is often followed by me saying, “If you’re still there and can still hear me, can you send me a quick message?” Most of the times, I do get a couple of people messaging through that yes, they are ok, sometimes even taking notes!

Today was great fun. More than anything, because I didn’t have to think much all day. In the morning, I was interviewed by Lissette Sutherland who is based in The Netherlands. Lissette connected with me via LinkedIn after she saw I had endorsed a book about virtual teams. Like me, she loves collaboration and is a little bit obsessed with spreading the word about the evolving workplace. I had a great chat with her over Google Hangouts, which she has recorded. I’ll share the link with you once she posts the chat – although you’ll have to bear with me touching my hair all the time, as I was starting to sweat in my London flat.

This afternoon, I met Lindsay Price from Theatrefolk, who are based in Canada. This time, I had been the one to reach out to Lindsay, to see whether they were interested in reviewing my book on physical theatre. I was then invited on for an interview for their podcast.

It was a bit strange. I was actually talking about teaching physical theatre and devising to high school students – something I haven’t done for about five or six years now. However, it was incredibly easy to go back into that world. When I finished the conversation, I felt like I had taken a trip down memory lane – I was back in random schools, with kids saying, “Can we do proper acting, please?” and with groups creating devised pieces based on Pinter and Hopper. Very strange – but again, a great conversation and so wonderful to speak to someone in Canada, it doesn’t happen every day.

Tomorrow will also be full of audio “stuff”. In the morning, I’m carrying out another interview for the Spain Uncovered podcast, this time with someone I went to school with. She is now an actress/director/writer/producer in Spain (I wonder who she reminds me of) and I think it will be interesting for people to hear about the theatre scene in Spain.

In the afternoon, after recording some telephone prompts for a corporation (you know: “To speak to someone, press 1; to carry on listening to me, press 2”), I will pick up the files for…. drum roll… the audiobook version of “The A to Z of Spanish Culture”! (Now a gasp, please.) It’s been an interesting project, especially as I hadn’t read the book for over a year. Some of it is quite good. I just hope I’ve done it justice.

So, that was my week in audio, and what a week it’s been. I think I needed to do a bit of writing as a detox activity. Puts the voices back in my head.

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