Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Chapter 71: In Which I Discuss Recording

Recently got this beautiful blurb from Laura Kasischke, author of The Life Before Her Eyes and The Raising. She's an amazing poet and for three decades has built this wonderful bibliography blending urban legend, the literary and the poetic. She says:

"Elwin Cotman has written a book for our times--edgy and transcendent, surreal and bizarrely sweet.  You won't put this down after you've picked it up, and you won't be the same once you've finished it.  This is a new voice to listen to closely.  A writer with strange and exciting gifts."

Wow. So beautiful. As I've said, getting feedback and positivity from authors I admire is one of the best parts of this. Laura Kasischke? Cat Rambo? Charles Saunders? Karen Russell? Are you serious? Such a gift.

Jack Daniels Sessions EP audiobook

I made it into the studio yesterday. Last time was November, I think. It took us about an hour and a half to set up. The producer was trying to record straight into his computer, but the sound wouldn't come out clean. We ended up recording straight into the hard drive in the studio, as usual. Recording is all about positioning, as well. Your distance from the mic can modulate the sound. So I sit on a chair, with my laptop on a chair and opened to a .pdf of the book (keyboard clicking doesn't make as much noise as riffling through pages), and the mic hanging between us. Despite the late start, we got through the end of "Assistant." That's the whole book. Yay! I don't think I've ever read that portion out loud, so it was interesting getting deep into the dramatic part. I'm not a trained actor and I'm doing this all off of instinct. Definitely had to tone down the yelling, and I totally made one of the hardrive speakers go all frizzy. Other lessons: always stay hydrated, and doing call-and-response with YOURSELF does not work. Thinking I'll record the call and the response separately next time.

Still a lot to do. I need to go over all the recordings and check for consistency in voice. I'm particularly concerned about consistency of character voices, and I know I'll have to re-record a lot of hammy, poorly spoken Southern dialect. But it's good to go forward. I still owe Kickstarter contributors a recording of one of the stories, which I'm working on. Progress! It's a good thing.

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