Last week, I updated you on my stats, and made a comment about the ratio of auditions to projects. As mentioned several times, this is a standard metric referred to by myself and others to judge effectiveness, just like an online retailer will talk about conversions – people converting from browsing to buying.
But I have a confession to make regarding the above referenced ratio. It isn’t really accurate. That is, the math is – how could it not be – but the rating of my effectiveness in auditions is misleading. And this leads to the emotional ride that, to me, is Voice over Working.
One of the most frustrating emails I receive, all to often, is the “Regarding your ACX Audition” message that says, “Unfortunately, you were not chosen to produce this book.” Little consolation comes the next part of the message that says, basically, Hey, there are more books out there. Get to work!
Most auditions basically disappear into the bit bucket. The ether. The round file. Whatever metaphor fits the generation you grew up in. You send out a little bit of yourself in every audition (any one that is worth listening to, IMHO, should have a little bit of yourself in it), and if you ever hear a word back from it, it comes as quite a surprise. There are a few very conscientious Rights Holders on ACX that will acknowledge an audition, and occasionally you will get a response about your submission, but generally nothing. And that process can be very oppressive over the course of time. Link that process on ACX with something very similar on Voices.com, Upwork, and Fiverr, and a person could easily start to feel a little blue!
As I finished my second full week of Voice over Working only, having left my night job previously, I seemed to be receiving both a spate of audition rejections interspersed with return business offers. To my recollection, I haven’t gotten an offer on ACX from a “cold call” audition in the past two weeks. Despite that, I have remained fairly busy, recording longer lasting projects nearing their end, and more importantly getting requests to audition or produce books from Rights Holders for whom I have done previous work. And depending on the order in which these come in and the length of time between non-rejections, my mood varies accordingly. In a span of two days, I will go from Gloom and Doom to I Can Do This! Maybe even within a span of two hours…
I have recorded the introduction for Pack Dynamics by Julie Frost, a vampire/werewolf thriller. She recounts how writing, and I steal this sentiment to apply to Voice over Working as well, is a solitary, lonely occupation where you sent out words never knowing if anyone will ever read (hear) them. I am now of the opinion that if that kind of existence is not something you can deal with emotionally, the writing and/or Voice over Working may not be for you. More on this next week.