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The Local Library as a Source for Audiobook Narration Material

By Stephanie Ciccarelli

October 24, 2010

Comments (2)

Latin American / Hispanic young woman reading a book in the libraryHave you ever thought of your local library as being a resource for your voice acting career?

Whether you're borrowing materials to practice with, cut demos from or to gather industry data, your local library serves as a wonderful place to broaden your horizons.

Find out more in today's VOX Daily.

3 Ways Your Library Can Help Your Voice Acting Career

The local library is one destination where you can literally become educated for free and obtain materials that can lead you to a more fruitful career in character voice acting and long form narration work in audiobooks.

Here are 3 ways that your local library can benefit you as a voice artist. At the library, you can:

1. Source public domain material for reading
2. Listen to established narrators
3. Locate and contact audio publishers

1. Sourcing Material

There are countless books in the library, whether found within the brick and mortar walls or available as eBooks online, that can help you to build a repertory of texts to practice with or to incorporate into your audiobook narration demos. Choosing books or materials available that are in the public domain is the safest and easiest way to find copy for a voice over demo in this niche. Another site you may want to visit is Project Gutenberg.

2. Listening to Pro Narrators

If you want to hear work recorded by professionals to get a better understanding of their technique, your local library has audiobooks on CD or books on tape that you can borrow. Some libraries even make these recordings available online. One of the best exercises you can do as a voice artist is to listen. Listen to those who are booking and study their reads, how they characterize and also note their performance from beginning to end. A successful narrator narrates regularly and always has a project on the go. You can also listen to audiobook narrator interviews on AudioFile Magazine.

3. Read the Text

You might have noticed that for every audiobook that is produced and distributed, there is an audio publisher! The audio publisher is someone who hires voice talent to serve as the narrator of an audiobook. Audio publishers can be large corporations or independent producers. To learn more about audio publishers and what they do as well as get connected with this aspect of the market, you'll want to check out the Audio Publishers Association (APA).

How Has Your Local Library Helped Your VO Career?

Looking forward to hearing from you!

Best wishes,



Related Topics: acting, audiobooks, industry, libraries, library, narration, narrators, reading, voiceovers


    Library useful? You bet! My very first paid narration job was a traditional childrens story. No script, so with audition seconds ticking away I fossicked around on Google, getting about 100 conflicting versions.
    Meanwhile my wife was already out the door and heading for town. In ten minutes she was back with the ideal basis for a quick script - and the book illustrations helped visualisation. Got the job, client delighted. But, guess what, our libraries in England now struggle for resources and may yet be run entirely by volunteers. Good and bad, that.
    With thanks for constant inspiration and support from Stephanie and team.
    Howard Ellison

    Posted by:

      Stephanie--have to tell you this story. First stop after moving to Eugene, Or. was Library to get a library card. Nice young Librarian took my application--looked at it a moment, then exclaimed "My God, you're Del Roy!!" Yes, so?---My kids and I all love your "Mysterious Benedict Society" audiobooks. I'm brand new to Eugene, already a hero. Got my new Library card right away!!

      Love Del Roy

      Posted by:

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