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Recording Your Fiction: A New Approach

Everyone’s talking about e-book or print, self-publishing or traditional. I want to talk about something different. Following the advice of my favorite fortune cookie ever—try a different way or new approach—today, I’m beginning a conversation about a different approach: audio. That is, recording your work and making it available to listeners on-line.
I do not speak from a point of authority; I speak from experience. I am a long-time writer, winner of numerous contests, holder of a Special Mention from Pushcart Prize for a short story, contributor to Sue Silverman’s memoir-writing instructional book Fearless Confessions, author of a traditionally published book, Making Crosses: A Creative Connection to God. And I’ve just recorded a short story collection, Cain’t Do Nothing with Love, which is now available to the public.
The conversation will include questions to ask in deciding if recording is right for you, tips on getting started, truths I learned along the way, my experience with the listening public, etc. But today we are going to take a look at the fears that I encountered when I first clicked on the microphone and began to read my words aloud.
Thanks for listening, join in the discussion, share this blog with anyone who likes to try something new—glad to have you along.

Recording Fears, or Why Your Heart Might Skip a Beat

  1. Your voice will sound stupid
  2. Your voice will sound old
  3. Your voice will sound JUST LIKE YOU
  4. You will use a phrase that unbeknownst to you is slang for a pornographic sex act
  5. You will mispronounce a word and not know it and your ignorance will be recorded for all the world to hear
  6. You will no longer be able to pretend this thing isn’t important to you
  7. Those who run the charities you’ve paired with the stories will be offended—now, we don’t want our name associated with that
  8. A friend will ask to listen to the story while you’re sitting there, mortifying you to death
  9. A really good writer will listen to the story and use it as the foundation of a blog entry on why we shouldn’t let amateurs have microphones
  10. People will feel like they know you
  11. You will have spent all this money for NOTHING
  12. Someone will complain about your using Robb Pate’s music without compensating him even though he’s dead
  13. Those who know you from your cross book will be shocked—I thought she was a religious person . . .
  14. You will offend Black folk or gay folk or poor folk or Indian folk—what the hell were you thinking?!?
  15. Your mother will hear you say a very bad word, out loud
  16. People will give your upstanding husband the stink-eye just because his wife is strange
  17. No one will donate to the charities
  18. You are trying to market an approach (online, iTunes, YouTube, blog) to an audience too old (i.e. your age) to be interested, and the audience who gets the approach are too young to care about your work
  19. Listeners won’t think the stories are funny, they won’t get it, they will find it just plain offensive
  20. They won’t think anything at all because no one is listening, your voice echoing into nothingness

Stay Tuned for Part II: How to Overcome Your Fears and Forge Ahead

 

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Comments (0)

  • Personally, I think your endeavor is ingenious. I haven’t seen another author do what you’ve done with this type of multimedia release and marketing. The fact you’ve made these stories available on so many platforms not just for free, but to GIVE away proceeds to worthy charities is a pretty big deal. I hope you don’t lose enthusiasm for the project–it has been really inspiring to me. I guess sometimes giving doesn’t always involve control of those doing the taking, but the point is still in the giving. As for me, I’ll take politely and say thank you very much.

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