It is time to over-simplify, that which has been made to sound confusing and complex for years…Copy reading skills:
1. It is necessary to know how to act in order to read copy efficiently, day after day.
2. Real and conversational voiceovers are popular because people feel like they are directly being spoken to, while hard sell and announcer voiceovers speak over people. There is always room in this world for both at various times. There is no absolute right, but there is an absolute wrong: Ignoring #3.
3. Practice, practice, practice, and practice more, but do so offline in improv classes, acting classes, and coaching classes. Website auditioning is not the time to practice. It is the time to represent yourself as a business.
4. Rinse and repeat step 3.
5. Remember to take care of your instrument; your vocal chords. How you treat yourself, will eventually be its own reward.
There will always be different styles of reading that some are better at than others. Just know that you can train yourself to do anything. It may take longer than others, but if you stay dedicated it will happen for you. This book, Word of Mouth by Susan Blu, is a book that, despite all technology, I still keep by me for inspiration for copy reading, even though I first read it in 1996. It still applies to copy reading today. Why? Out of all the things that have changed in doing business in the last 20 years, great original copy reading and audio quality has never gone out of style. If you think you should rush how you record or change the way you read copy, because you now work with a computer, it will show in your results. The game may be a bit faster now, but the ‘voice artist behind a mic’ is always in demand. If there was one sentence we could share to assist more than anything else, when it comes to reading copy:
“Copy reading is about being original and connecting to the audience by speaking to one person, for if you connect to one person while you speak into the mic, the whole world stops and thinks, “That person must be talking to me.”