All acting is storytelling of one kind or another…
…but an Audiobook is storytelling in its purest form – no sets, costumes, lights, music or other voices to aid either the actor’s or the listener’s shared imaginative investment in a text. Everything is done by a single voice, which can be really liberating for a versatile performer.
For a bookworm like me, working as an Audiobook Director/Producer is a total joy. I have produced approx 400 titles so far, and counting. I respect the responsibility of bringing a book to life, whatever the genre or subject matter, and I get as much satisfaction from directing an interesting history book as from the most rip-roaring adventure.
I have worked for all the leading UK publishing houses, including Macmillan, Penguin, Harper Collins, Time Warner/Hachette, Naxos, Random House, Hodder Headline, Chivers Audio, Audible and BBC Worldwide, on everything from classic novels to brand new releases. I am lucky enough to work with some of the finest voice artists in the industry, but I also enjoy working with actors who are just starting to find their storytelling wings.
This year, Alex Calister’s debut thriller Winter Dark, which I directed the actor Ell Potter reading for the Audible Original imprint, was a finalist in the 2020 Audie Award Crime & Thrillers category (the Audies are the USA Audio Industry equivalent of the Emmys or Oscars). The three of us went over to New York for the event and a good time was had by all. We were beaten by Stephen King’s The Institute, but since it was his first win and he was also being given a Lifetime Achievement Award, we considered it an honourable defeat. Here are Ell and Alex with their finalists’ medals.
The sequel, Winter Rising, reached #No.1 on Audible’s Bestseller list and a 5* rating on Saturday May 31st 2020.