One of the most integral components to a successful audio book is the narrator, or reader. Much like an actor in a feature film, the reader is responsible for bringing the words of the storybook to life so the listener cannot only hear the story but see it in their mind as well.
A successful narrator is much more than just a pleasant voice. The basic skills needed of a narrator include the ability to combine natural communicative skills with the eloquence of emotional sensitivity. The meanings of words need to be clearly perpetuated in the context of their intention regarding the text at hand. It is also vitally important that proper and accurate pronunciations of both native and foreign words are delivered without pause.
narrator must maintain smooth, transitional balance and flow so that every
chapter remains consistent with the desired imagery and feeling being displayed
in each scene. Narration is genuinely received as an art form, as the narrator
holds the unique ability to take the listener on a trip through the pages of the
book. Narrators are responsible for successfully conveying the character's
emotions by using vocal tools such as pitch and tone. Good narrators always
effectively maintain rhythm and stamina delivering a consistent message or
feeling to the listeners mind. It is their job to keep the listener interested
in the book.
As you listen to an audio book you will notice much emphasis is placed on the intonations and rhythmic aspects of the language. The reader uses this to further develop the sensory perception. Narrators must maintain a dynamic voice range throughout their reading, which can, and should, naturally fluctuate to indicate an emotional stance or feeling such as a frown, smile, or shrug. Even a hug can be represented by sound. This needs to be done without breaking the natural rhythm of the narration. The listener needs to be able to hear the text and draw a picture in their mind based on the delivery methods of the narrator.
book narration is not as simple as just reading a script. Usually the material
is pre-read so that a complete script analysis can be given. The next step is
deciding which style of voice will best represent the characters intended
personality. Additionally, the script is screened for scenes where special
accents or emphasis will be needed to properly convey the mood behind the
The production team to record audio books typically consists of a narrator, sound monitor and a reviewer. They are done in a specially designed sound recording studio. It can take around 5 hours to complete one hour of voice recording. Since the audience strictly depends on the narrator to offer the mood, it is a difficult procedure to perfect.
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