I’ve been working on an audiobook edition of Miss Wrong and Mr Right and I’m thrilled to say it’s now complete.
I’ve had a great time working with the audiobook narrator, Jan Cramer who is fantastic and has brought the characters to life in ways I hadn’t imagined. Jan trained at The Central School of Speech and Drama in London, and as well as narrating audiobooks is an experienced Actress and Voice Over artist. I caught up with her recently for a chat…
Rob: Hello Jan. I’ve had a wonderful time working with you, and hearing you bring the characters from Miss Wrong and Mr Right alive in the audiobook version. Who was your favourite character to play?
Jan: I loved Gran, she made me laugh so much – she has all the best lines – but I always find that there’s a smaller character that really appeals to me, and this time it was Xander. He’s sweet and innocent when he arrives at the beginning, but you get the sense he grows into himself as he gains confidence. I really warmed to him.
Rob: You certainly brought him to life in a way I hadn’t imagined. He grows up a lot during the book, and I hadn’t realised this until I heard your reading. You have a very versatile voice, and you are great at all kinds of accents. Did you know you could do this from an early age? Is there any accent you find hard?
Jan: Yes most actors that sing are good at accents. Its all part of the same territory. It’s a listening skill more than anything and one I’ve always enjoyed. I don’t think there’s an accent I wont try. Perhaps there should be.
Rob: Let me know if you ever read a Star Trek novel. I’d love to hear your take on a Klingon accent! After going through the recording process with you on Miss Wrong and Mr Right, the audio version is almost eight and a half hours long. I realise now that narration is a very specific art and it’s very demanding. How do you protect your voice? Do you record in bits, or all at once?
Jan: I like to record over a few days, recording in no longer than 2 hour sessions. I then go back and listen and edit out my ridiculous mistakes, and sometimes re-record sections when I think I can do better. It can take three times as long to record the book. I make sure I walk or dig my vegetable patch before recording so that physically the energy is there and the sinuses are clear. I’m also quite strict about diet. I don’t drink coffee or tea when recording but drink lots of water.
Rob: What advice would you give to actors who would like to pursue audiobook and voice over work?
Jan: I think narrating audiobooks is something you do when you have some experience in a recording studio doing lots of voiceovers and radio plays, so that you’re comfortable in a studio, knowing how the microphone can work in your favour. Once you’re not afraid of the technical side, you can immerse yourself in a book. But it’s a lot of work and I know it’s not for everyone. Personally I absolutely love it.
Rob: Is there a book out there you would love to narrate – if you like, your fantasy narration?
Jan: I can’t think of one. Sometimes a favorite book to read might not be the one to narrate. For me a good writer is what you need. Whatever the genre. And I enjoy changing from one genre to another, it keeps things interesting. When you get a book like Miss Wrong and Mr Right it’s hard work not to laugh out loud when recording. Even though you’ve read the book twice before. It was a joy to record. honestly. Mind you, I’ve never narrated a vampire romance yet. Or read one come to think of it. So maybe that would be something to look out for…
Rob: Maybe I should write one! Thanks so much Jan, it’s been great to talk to you.
You can download the Miss Wrong and Mr Right audiobook via the ‘Robert’s Books’ tab above.
Rob Bryndza x