I’ve been away from the booth for a couple of weeks re-charging my batteries in Maui. Hawaii is a second home for me. After spending four years living there (and starting my voice over career there) I never really got it out of my system. So of course, when I’m looking for a place to slow down it’s my first choice for a vacation.
Yes indeed, even a freelancer can and should take a vacation. As a European I find the American attitude to vacations strange. Most of my American friends haven’t taken a vacation in years, which blows my mind. Vacations are proven to help you mentally and emotionally, it makes you more open-minded and independent. So yes, even though I run my own business, it’s important for me to unplug. I admit, I didn’t get to unplug as much as I’d wanted to. I needed to stay available because of an upcoming conference that needed arranging, and as it turned out, I had other personal reasons that meant I couldn’t turn off my email and Facebook completely. But it was still nice not to have to be available.
So what did I do on vacation? I read a lot and watched whales. One day we went paddling and had three humpback whales wander close to our kayak. It was a truly memorable experience, but one, I admit, that has happened to us before. I got to thinking about that. Were we lucky to have had whales appear by our kayak on multiple occasions? Yes. But was it pure luck that got us there? Not precisely.
One of the books I read on the plane had a line that has stuck with me: Luck follows preparation. That is pretty much how it was for us. It’s difficult to go seeking an encounter with a humpback whale, and frankly dangerous. But if you prepare; if you keep putting yourself out there, in the water, with an open mind and your eyes and ears open, ready to see what can happen you’ve got a better shot at seeing whales. In the same way, it’s very rare to get plucked out of nowhere to voice a role for a major game or audiobook. However, if you keep preparing, training, meeting people, putting yourself out there, it can happen.
Suffice it to say we were very reluctant to go home. But go home we did, and I’m back in the booth. One piece of good news I had when I got home was that I had received my Audible Approved status. It’s a seal of approval ACX awards based on your audio samples, how many titles you’ve done and the overall quality of your work. I don’t know at this time how that translates as far as getting work, but it does hopefully offer some reassurance to authors seeking out narrators to collaborate with.
And on that note, I shall say mahalo for reading this and aloha nui loa, until next time!