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  • Carol Anne Shaw

Down the Rabbit Hole of Audiobook Narration!

I’ve been an audiobook fan for a long time. I love consuming stories this way. If the narrator is good, I am right there in the story, invested for a good 8-12 hours. I can also do stuff while I read. (Yay, for multi-tasking.) But does listening to an audiobook count as reading?


Psycholinguists (the study of how humans process language) agree that reading and listening to books engage different brain pathways, but the “mental machinery” involved in understanding a plot, narrative, etc., is the same regardless of how you consume a book. In other words, your brain lights up pretty much the same way. So yeah, audiobooks are reading.


Through some serendipitous woo-woo (including connecting with some excellent narrators online), I have descended the rabbit hole of audiobook narration. Because, among other things, what a pleasure it would be to bring stories to life this way for writers!


Learning about the industry was my summer project. It was overwhelming and taxing for my aging brain, but what the hell? I bought a mic and created a wonderful sound booth behind the bedroom door. I took a course to learn about DAW (sound-editing software) and had a little coaching. Most importantly, I read aloud to Gordon regularly. (He was very patient, although he informed me he would have liked me to read more stories with cats and rabbits in them.)


Audiobook narration is a fast-growing industry. Publishers are embracing audiobooks, and narrators are needed. But if the idea of spending hours inside a small, dark space by yourself every day makes your skin crawl, it probably isn’t for you. (I love hiding from the world, so...)


I might suck at this, but nothing ventured, nothing gained. And so far, so good. I have just completed my first audiobook gig, and I'm still here!


Stay tuned for updates, and if you feel like sending me some Vitamin D supplements, thank you. I might need them! (Booths are dark, sunless spaces.) LOL.


Happy reading, whichever way you choose to enjoy stories!



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