Sunday, 12 December 2010

And this month's crisis is...

The audiobook. More precisely, the audiobook of Tyme's End, which - despite Tyme's End not actually being published until the 4th of January - I'm recording this week in the bath. No, sorry, in Bath. Sorry. Easy mistake to make.

The crisis is a two-parter - or a double whammy, or whatever the appropriate phrase is, for crises. Double-dip? Anyway. Firstly, I'm ill again, which is really annoying, and means I'm swigging echinacea tea and inhaling steam and OD'ing on vitamin C in a desperate attempt to have a voice by Thursday. Normally (one of the perks of being a writer) it doesn't really matter too much when I'm ill, because my daily life involves nothing that can't be put off or soldiered through without too much trouble. But this is the disadvantage of doing something exciting... Hmph. I blame my editors, because I was at the Bloomsbury Christmas party on Thursday and I'm convinced that's where I caught it. Every time I go to London I seem to get ill - maybe there's a lesson there... Such as, "The capital is a steaming cesspit of pestilence"?

The second bit was more foreseeable, and can be summed up in one word: accents.

Yes, accents. Of course, I am a Trained Actor, darling, but accents were never my strong point, and you'd think I'd know better than to put myself forward for an audiobook where they have any significant part to play. Yes, well. Think again. One of the characters - one of the main characters - has an American accent. Or rather he has a bit of an American accent, as he's English, but has been living in the US for ten years. I suppose I was hoping it wouldn't matter too much if it sounded weird and hybrid, because - well, it would. Wouldn't it? At least, I really hope so... But writing a scene with an American accent, a Welsh accent and an Iranian accent was just silly. (Not to mention sounding like the set-up for a joke.)


And to make matters worse, there's a clause in the contract which says they can sack me on the first day if I'm not reading it to an acceptable standard. So - this is a real cliffhanger, then. Will I come back having earnt some money and made an audiobook? Or will it be only a sad little sojourn in Bath? Tune in again next week to find out...

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