I really hate to scare you but…

The scary part of voice acting?Even though Halloween has passed and all the stores are already running in full Christmas mode, I decided that I’d like to give you just one last scare — and it’s a biggie. This scare is for all of the people who are interested in becoming voice over actors. It’s especially for those who think that being a voice over actor is “easy money” or a “walk in the park”; for those who think that simply having a great voice and a killer demo is going to land you gig after gig after gig.

Are you ready for your scare? Here it is…

You have to audition constantly

Yep. That’s right: constant, daily auditions. Not just one a day, nor even two a day. But voice over auditions sometimes reaching into dozens a day. And guess what aspiring voice actors? You may not get a paying job for days or even weeks. Some novice (but trained) voice actors might only land a job every few months. Ouch!

Are you scared yet? You should be. Because even though some of the online voice talent websites make it sound like landing a job is quick and easy, the reality is: it’s not. You will be auditioning daily with the high chance of not landing a paying gig. That is the reality of the business, not only when you are first starting out, but also when you become a more experienced and recognized voice talent.

Test yourself

A few months ago I wrote a post called Wanna become a voice-over actor? In that post I challenged aspiring voice actors to practice reading for at least 30 minutes a day — longer if possible.

In this post, I now throw down a new challenge for you: practice auditioning every day. Not just one audition a day, nor even two. But try cranking out about half-a-dozen quality auditions every day to start.

Here’s what to do

Begin by grabbing any script. You can use free voice over scripts found on the Internet, scripts on the voice over audition websites, or simply use the copy found in newspaper and magazine ads.

The next step is to record yourself performing the script. Make sure you are getting the best possible sound. If you have to lay out some blankets or put together a sound booth, then do it. Go through the motions of what a real voice over actor must do every day. Don’t leave out anything.

After recording the script, edit it. Remove any mouth noises like clicks, pops, and lip smacks. Get rid of any annoying breath sounds. Make sure that the final recording is as close to perfect as you can get it. (This is great practice for learning how to use recording software.)

With that first audition done, now do it all again with totally different scripts. Like I said, about six auditions a day to help you get a basic feel for the job.

If you grabbed your scripts from a voice over audition website, then please DON’T submit them unless you have already received quality training and have a professional demo. The last thing you want to do is to make a bad name for yourself before you even had a chance to make a good name. Submit auditions ONLY when a professional voice acting coach says you are ready.

Did you pass the test?

How did you fair on the test? Could you do it for one day? How about a week? How about a whole month? Could you imagine yourself doing this every single day as your career?

If you answered yes to any of the above questions, then you’ve got what it takes to not only become successful as a voice over artist one day, but also to love doing it as well! 😀

7 Comments

  1. Simply put…. Word up.

    Best advice I have seen online in a long time.

    Good advice should not serve to scare anyone. They should appreciate it. You can only do what you know…until you know better.

    Best,
    Steven

  2. I’m definitely loving the Edge resource as far as a means of working out the kinks and practicing continually and daily. Great post, and great site! Bookmarking it and adding it to my Google Reader feed. 🙂

  3. Looking for basic voiceover books and getting an education in the process — quite a post — I’m one of the “new” folks — thanks for the info — and thanks for the beginners training program

  4. These articles are interesting, but what chance is there really for a 32 year-old living in the middle of nowhere in the Midwest with no voice training and no money to buy recording equipment? It seems an impossible goal to do v/o acting for animation.

  5. yes, super helpful and affirming honestly as I consider diving into this pool.

    also wondering, does anyone have advice about (eventually) getting an agent? Is this only necessary/beneficial at a certain point in one’s career as a voice actor?

    Any thoughts would be appreciated. thanks all

  6. I found this website to be perfect in the information i am looking for. I am hoping to become a voice over actor myself i love animation especially and have a huge variety of voices that i can do near perfectly without training. Thankyou for the information and hope fully one day you might hear me on the TV :).

    Any advice or tips for me would be outstanding thank you.

  7. Well, thank you for both articles. I am thinking about trying to start a career in this. I do read a lot, recently started to read out loud as you suggested. I even do it in english, with different accents. English is not my first languadem, but i do speak 4 languages , so that’s no problem. But im trying to do what you suggested, but i have no idea where i can tryu to audition, because i live in in Nothern Europe. Anyway, thank you for this.

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