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if you’re not going to appreciate us, you better at least be aware of us


It’s a feisty night in Minneapolis and I’m already laughing at the calls I’m going to get on this post. But you know that won’t stop me 🙂

My friend and the kindest man in voice over (yes, he’s also still the best looking in the biz too, much cuter than Kara Edwards, whoever she is) Dave Courvoisier called about this time last August with the idea for National Voiceover Appreciation month. He wanted to do it in September and I helped a little and we did it in short order. Great events and great fun for those who understood the message of the idea.

Some sissy pants voice over talents got all squeamish about the word “appreciation” and how self-aggrandizing it all seemed (what?!). For those who made the mistake of telling me that, I told them to turn the channel if they didn’t like it cause the event was all about fun and awareness, not ego (which most everybody else understood). Oy!

Those same twits will probably get their knickers all twisted in a knot about Dave’s 2011 tweak to his original concept, now rebranded Voice Over Awareness Today. This one is all Dave and it looks to be terrific.

His revision is a great 2.0 concept tying in a weekly question on a VO related topic, prizes, sponsors and surprises. And it all kicks off September 1 and runs through the end of the month.

If you’re in voice over and you’re not a sissy pants (and I know YOU’RE not) I hope you’ll partake and enjoy the whole show that Dave has selflessly put together as a way to say thank you to the industry and peers (even the squeamish ones )who mean so much to him.

Excuse me while I now go to the phone after I hit the publish key in 3…2…1…”Ring!”

guest blogger- female voice talent natalie stanfield thomas

Female Voice Over Talent Natalie Stanfield Thomas

I met Natalie Stanfield Thomas at Faffcon 2 but I knew of her work before then.

She’s a wonderfully creative voice talent who brings alot of life experience to her voice over work and it make her audio great.

We were talking one day (as we New York State neighbors often do) and she mentioned how she felt how she was upset with herself and her faux communication skills. She said she’d been using social media as a way to communicate with her friends and family more than actually speaking with them.

I said you’ve got a blog post in that idea and you need to write it. She finally did. Here is my friend Natalie Stanfield Thomas:

In the past six months, I’ve witnessed the birth of my friends’ grandchildren on one side of the country and children of another within days of each other on the other side of the country, I’ve been there to offer support when a marriage fell apart a continent away, crashed a wedding and reception I didn’t even know about until some friends told me, gave moral support to a friend who was dealing with a child with emotional/behavioral struggles, cheered from the sidelines while another friend launched her book deal, drooled over the latest cuisines and tastings some of my cohorts saw fit to share, and witnessed countless career-making deals be made between friends in the entertainment industry.

I did all of this, and never left my desk, in fact, for the most part many of these exchanges occurred without any real human contact at all. I had all of these interchanges with my close personal friends and family members, through Facebook and Twitter.

It suddenly occurred to me that I have been lulled into the false sense that I was actually cultivating my relationships.

It was so astonishing, as a matter of fact, that one of my friends remarked in an email exchange that he too had just realized that since we often comment on one another’s pictures or status updates on Facebook, he had not realized until that very moment, in that very email, that this was the first intentional contact we’d had with one another in SIX MONTHS.

Our job is communication, it’s what we’re supposed to be good at, so why then am I sitting here making a ‘to do’ list of intentionality?

I am reminding myself that PERSONAL contact with the people important to me, friends and clients is something I have to cultivate. The electronic media that makes networking so simple, also has an insidious side. It has the ability to afford a false sense of connectivity, to make you believe you are staying involved, when in reality you are on auto pilot. Remember, the only time you can coast is when you are going down hill. So I’m awake now and pedaling forward. I’m making personal contact with the people I interact with in my social media.

So how about you?

When was the last time you had a real conversation with the people in your network? Think about it, and do me a favor will you? If you see yourself in any of this, don’t ‘tweet’,’plus’ or ‘like’ it until you’ve first called someone and told them about it.

the unblog

Voice Talent Doug Turkel - Unnouncer_Unblog

Doug Turkel is really tall.

He gets tons of big time voice over gigs.

Chicks dig him.

Now he has a cool new blog where he says cool things that are….cool.

Chicks dig him even more now.

In high school, I hated guys like Doug Turkel. 😉

why the hell do you want to be in voice over?!

voice over workshop presented by voice over talent peter k. o'connell

That’s what I feel like saying to every new person that calls me about the Voice Over Workshop and wants to get started in voice over. But I don’t say it; I try to be honest with people but I try not to be brutal.

Everyone….everyone is entitled to their dream and I am not the final arbitrator of talent or career choice. It’s just a dumb vocational decision fraught with lots of challenges, which can prove insurmountable to many. I think a VO newbie might enjoy a career in bomb disposal more.

But today, a Sunday of all days, I got two calls from folks wanting to get started with voice over training. Sunday being a day of reflection for many, these two folks may have reflected on voice over. Or maybe it was a rainy Sunday and they had nothing else to do except search the web, I dunno.

But because they seemed a little unsure of my training process (in spite of my wordy web exposition on the site), let me – again – briefly explain how this works.

1. I’m going to initially send you to www.voiceoverentranceexam.com and tell you to read my free book. I do this not as an exercise in ego but to give you a sense of how honest I will be as a voice over consiliere.

2. Then if you want to go forward, we will pick a Saturday and work for 2 hours on whatever voiceover topic you choose. Yes, YOU pick the agenda (I’m a voice over talent…planning to is too much like work…kidding!).

3. There are no minimum classes – you can do one class or one hundred…there are no discounts for multiple classes. My knowledge bank does not decrease the more frequently I work with you – hopefully you see even more value with more visits…that’s the feedback from my learners, anyway.

4. Yes, the guarantee is still in place…if we go through the lesson and I think you do not have what it takes to be in voice over, I’ll stop the first session, tell you why you suck as a voice talent in my opinion and you don’t pay me anything.

5. No, I really don’t just want to talk with you about voiceover for a few minutes. I know you are a nice person, so am I but I am also a very busy person and I have to draw the line somewhere. Family and finance come before sitting in a coffee shop giving free career advice to someone I’ve never met before. I know, I’m such a jerk even though I say I’m a nice person.

So there, that’s how the Voice Over Workshop operates. Wherever this information ends up on the web, hopefully that gives you a sense of how we would work together…and I hope we do get that opportunity.

audio’connell in cleveland

Voice Over Talents Trish Basanyi and Peter K. O'Connell

I thought I had a lot of work irons in the fire.

I’m a rank amateur compared to my friend, female voice talent Trish Basanyi, who I got to see on my trip to Cleveland.

Not only does she have her own freshly re-minted voice over web site cruising along, she also has her VoiceTweet site going and her new Spanish language voice over venture Voice Casa on line now.

Plus, she and Terry Daniel and Dave Courvoisier are hosting webinars on Social Media dubbed The Voice Over Super Socials. (Actually, the webinars will be in plain English, and will not be dubbed).

After listening to all that work, I need a nap.

deb munro and elley-ray hennessy invade toronto

Voice Talent Peter K. O'Connell with Voice Actor and Coach Deb Munro

“This is a workshop event that will shock you, grab you, educate you and literally change your life.”

Well that’s one hell of a promise, isn’t it?! These voice over coaches mean “bidnez’!

I’ve known Deb for some years (trained with her) and briefly met Elley-Ray last year. I think it sounds like a fun and insightful weekend of voiceover training.

It starts Friday evening, September 09, 2011 and wraps up Sunday evening, September 11th over at the Broadview Studios.

You can read all about it and make your reservations here.