For this fourth part of my series called Invite the Avalanche, based on a talk I’ve given at Faffcon, I want to focus on the subject of persistence.
Persistence is important, but what most people don’t tell you is that it’s not just being persistent, but being wise about being persistent that is the real key. What do I mean? Simply plugging away, pursuing your dream of a full time voiceover business isn’t enough on its own. In fact, you can have a measure of success, doing what you’ve been doing that was successful and find yourself in the deep weeds with very little to show for your efforts if you’re not careful.
The thing you have to be persistent about, more than anything else, is continually improving.
Yes, I mean about how you do voiceover work. Styles change. One kind of voice or vocal style will be really hot for a while and then things will begin to shift and before long something else is the hottest thing going. Being able to deliver your very best performances is critically important. It’s because I want to keep my performance skills sharp that I continually study. I’ve worked with Nancy Wolfson and with Marice Tobias. I’ve taken workshops on audiobooks and performance skills with Pat Fraley. Whomever you choose to work with, keep your performance tools sharp.
But I would submit there’s something else that’s equally important. The way you approach and run your business must constantly improve. When I did my first voiceover job in 1974, the Internet didn’t yet exist. Personal computers were barely in their infancy. Almost all voiceover jobs were booked through agents. No one auditioned from home. The MP3 audio format wouldn’t be invented for almost 20 years.
Needless to say, much has changed. And those changes influence so many things about the way we run our businesses. Yes, I still book a bunch of work through agents, but I also do a huge amount of work that comes to me directly. However you elect to conduct your voiceover business, whether it’s anything like I do mine or not, you need to keep current with the tides of change that sweep through our business constantly. While some of the voiceover coaches I’ve mentioned about can help you, this is something you really have to stay in touch with on your own.
As you remain persistent at keeping your tools sharp, both your performance tools and your business tools, your avalanches will come.