The Storytelling Me

More than a year ago, I wrote a post on this very page saying that I had then discovered a great pleasure from a newly acquired habit of listening to audio books. It is time to expand on why it was so.

When I said it was a great and a pleasurable experience, it indeed was. It is much like saying, music is great. When we say music is great, we mean of course the good examples of music. There are a vast variety of noises that we can purchase from the i-Store or whatever that is people purchase their stuff from nowadays. We can not appreciate all that are for sale. I for instance completely ban noises like pop and Rap from my house and I even go as far as unfriend people who I know, enjoying that kind of stuff.

Before I get distracted the usual way and type a couple of pages about the state of music and struggle to conclude on what I started with, I want to go back to books. I spoke very highly of audio books because the ones I had in mind were those I was fortunate  enough to acquire. Stephen Fry whom I quoted last time had recorded a lot of books himself and he had made a wonderful job of making those books. I also had access to a lot of content by P.G.Wodehouse recorded in sixties and seventies and I love listening to those readers again and again. I said this before and I will say it again; all those great voices that I can never forget are like the voices of my grand parents, to me at least. It is like a personal story telling experience one on one.

In a way we can compare this art to music once again. The talent that is required to make good music differs vastly in each individual and so it the ability to narrate a story in a very captivating manner. A good books is like a good composition and the quality of language used in the book is much like the beauty of the composition and the performance of the tune is the person that reads it. It takes everything to be right to make a good listening experience. I am now able to appreciate the difficulty in doing so. I have recently volunteered for a domain that maintains audio versions of free content. I initially thought that it was going to be a walk over, you sit near your computer with a software turned on, open a book and read till you need a drink of water, read again and so forth and you end up in a book in a time that would be a bit more than you need to just read it yourself. I was way too wrong, it seems to take far more time than that, especially in my case, for I do not seem to have any talent for it.

With a lot of effort I could record a book that people can understand. There is an uncertainty as whether it would really provide a good listening experience to the listener like I enjoyed with a lot of good audio content. That also has much to do with the choice of literature as well. I found recordings of some of the other works of Wodehouse in the public domain and all of them were done by americans, some of them it felt like were from Southern portion of the country. That is completely wrong, it entirely ruins the experience. I am an Indian and I do not want to ever record a Wodehouse book and put someone else through similar horror. Being an amateur, I prefer stories where you can do most narrations as a third person. I cannot possibly do voice acting when I read, it is so hard to do.

Last week, I tried recording some samples. When I listened to them, it felt so appalling that I could not find a full satisfactory paragraph complete without any imperfections. It is going to be one of those momentary interest a lot of which I have taken on and given up after a short while. I won’t have that little detail discourage me from purchasing a good condenser microphone. I am feeling good about it, I can use it to record music anyways.

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