Yesterday was Help A Horse Day. In the next month we can celebrate Zipper Day, Lumpy Rug Day, Baby Day, Two Different Colored Shoes Day (I will personally be owning that one), Batman Day, Lei Day, No Pants Day (not going to be celebrating this one - you're welcome) . . . And this is a drop in the proverbial bucket. It seems there is a "day" for everything imaginable. Wait - no Audiobook Day? How can this happen? There's even a Cubicle Day, for crying out loud. Really, what is there about cubicles to celebrate?? (No offense to any cubicle fans out there.)
Luckily, there is Tell A Story Day (April 27 here in the US and October 27 is Scotland and the UK). And many of my fellow audiobook narrators have decided we will adopt this day as our Audiobook Day (until we can convince the world audiobooks deserve a day of their own).
To celebrate today, we have coined a hashtag (#Listen2aBook) and will be tweeting and blogging about some of our favorite, but not so well-known, reads. I want to start with a book released last July, "Where Bluebirds Fly" by Brynn Chapman. First, I must say I've truly enjoyed reading all of the audiobooks I've narrated. Some have enriched, some have challenged, some have entertained, some have educated, some have warmed my heart. The reason "Where Bluebirds Fly" is getting my first "favorite" is because it encompasses so many of these.
It has educated me. The protagonists in the story are synesthetics. Synesthetics' senses are intertwined in such a way that they can "hear" colors, or "see" music, or many other combinations of sensory blending. It is a trait that I have had little experience with, but because of my experience with "Where Bluebirds Fly", I want to continue to learn more about.
It has warmed my heart. Even through the loneliness and trauma in the lives of Verity and Truman, their longing for a sense of belonging and understanding, and the insurmountable obstacle that stands in their way, they stay strong and determined and hopeful.
It has enriched me. The telling of the struggles and conflict in the lives of Verity, Truman, and John, has helped me to understand that sometimes, the very thing that we believe is holding us back, is what gives us our uniqueness and can be our blessing.
It has challenged me. I had to portray characters from 17th century Salem, learning different speech patterns and varying levels of accents to portray the slave Tituba and her husband, the staid Paris family, Giles and Martha Corey, and other common folk in Salem. But I also had to switch the tone to present day, changing speech patterns and pacing to portray present day America. I am proficient in several accents and dialects, but I had never had the occasion to do an Indian accent until this book. I had to listen and study to perfect it and can now add that to my list. And I was able to work on my Scottish for Truman's character, which I had done before, but felt I needed more work to perfect it.
And, I was downright entertained. I am a long-time story lover, so naturally, when I narrate, I listen to the story. The more complex and well structured the story is, the more enjoyable my time reading it will be. "Where Bluebirds Fly" is paranormal romance, science fiction, fantasy, and historical fiction, broaching the subjects of Asperger syndrome, synesthesia, mass hysteria, and childhood trauma. It has a complex storyline, with time travel, witch trials, and mysterious portals.
In short, it was loads of fun.
Please feel free to comment and tell me about your favorite stories you've had told to you. And don't forget - search #Listen2aBook to see narrator faves!!
My name is Karen. My passions are theatre and books, and I've finally found a way to combine the two. My venue: audio books.