Posted by: whirlabout | December 7, 2008

Using the Internet as Your Classroom

One of my favorite things to do when researching a career in voice-over is to listen to podcasts, webinars and teleconferences from other VO professionals. You see, I live a long way from the booming media markets of Los Angeles, New York and Chicago. That would have been a career killer years ago – and sure, those are the places to be for true VO stars. But the internet has made it possible to do this type of work from just about anywhere, if – and this is a big if – you have a solid foundation of training and practice under your belt. For folks like me who live outside the big media towns, it’s amazing how many resources you can find online to give that process a jump.

For example, one of the top ten VO performers Read More…

Posted by: bluewave22 | December 7, 2008

Hurry Up and Wait

bluewavepostOur state legislature convenes January 12, 2009. There are many paid and volunteer opportunities available, and I would love to participate. It would provide me a much better working knowledge of our current legislature, and get my name and face out there. I feel like I really need to get something like this going, before  ??  before what? Before I’m too old? Before my brain has deteriorated even more? I’m not sure why I feel such a pull to get my flight started. I know my children will soon both be in school full time and I will mourn these years. Why can I not relax and enjoy my time with them? 


Posted by: penelopefly | December 2, 2008

Out of the Start Gate

ulyssespostThere are exactly 23 days until Christmas, 30 more until my daughter’s 6th birthday, and precisely 31 days until I board a plane for North Carolina to begin my graduate school experience at Warren Wilson’s MFA program for Writers. In my life before children, a month was ample time to prepare for a big event. But, these days, add two young girls to the mix and four weeks feels like one. My calendars still say October!

The materials: several books and twelve peer manuscripts, just in time for the holidays. I marvel at the idea that I will somehow Christmas shop, ho, ho, ho, prepare for a birthday, read all this material, make intelligent comments on them, and gather everything I need for a life-changing 11-day trip.

Yet, let me tell you this: by my desk at the window sits a stack of books by
, Graham Greene, HG Wells, Brothers Grimm, and Lydia Davis. In the mail, arriving any day, a package of fresh stories from bright and talented writers whom I will soon have the honor of meeting. Does it get any better  than this? All these years of thinking to myself, what if I could; what if I really tried to do this?  Can someone pinch me?

Posted by: whirlabout | November 25, 2008

Daring to Try… With a Sense of Humor

whirlaboutpostCurious thing about starting a new career 15 years into your old one is figuring out where to begin. You’re not really at entry-level — too much experience for that. You’re not automatically at high rank either — not enough skills or connections for that. So if your new profession doesn’t require a new degree, and you’ve done so much research that it all starts to look the same, the only place I can figure is jumping at every possible opportunity, no matter how unqualified or uncertain about it I might feel. And that means gearing up for a lot of risks, stumbles and (hopefully) laughs along the way.

For example, most of my voiceover jobs come from corporate contacts made while in TV news. These projects are industrials — typically instructional pieces, orientations, or sales presentations. I love doing them, but they’re not exactly riveting demo material.

More recently, though, Read More…

Posted by: bluewave22 | November 24, 2008

Politics Anyone?

bluewavepost In my state legislative district, lives the Majority Leader of the House. Although he’s made many decisions that have not been in the best interest of his constituents, or our state, he was uncontested the past two elections. People were either afraid of angering him, or too apathetic to care. I knew I should run against him, and had always thought that when my kids were too old to need me (does that ever happen??), I would run for office, but not now, not yet. Then, Barack Obama came to town.

Read More…

Posted by: penelopefly | November 20, 2008

Getting what you want out of life

ulyssespost For the past 48 hours I’ve been storming about.  I’ve been brusque with my children, snotty to my husband, and almost kicked my dog. There is a tornado of overwhelming responsibilities simmering beneath my nerves- sure to result in a nervous breakdown, or, more likely, my period. Hormones aside, I’m stressed.  Thanksgiving is next week and Christmas is sure to arrive the next day, and then comes my first day at the Warren Wilson MFA Program for Writers. I am woefully unprepared.  

There are presents to select, buy, wrap; cards to choose, sign, send; bills to pay; trips to take- which means packing, laundry, packing, laundry.  The day after my daughter’s birthday (New Year’s) I board a plane for North Caroline where I will begin my graduate program.  I already have work.  A book to read, critical analysis to write, and ten, 20 page manuscripts to critique by January 3rd. Have I mentioned that I’ve never left my children for more than two days in a row? (Much less twelve!)

This afternoon, while stuck Read More…

Posted by: bluewave22 | November 17, 2008

Call to Action

I never thought I would be a stay at home mom. Never. I liked my career and it was finally beginning to go in a direction I loved. When I had my son, I held that tiny little baby and could not for a minute imagine handing him over to someone else to raise. So I stayed home and was fortunate to be able to continue a bit of freelancing. After a couple of years and another baby, freelancing became stressful, so I began to cut back.

As a mother, I felt so much weight on every single decision I made. Read More…

Posted by: bluewave22 | November 17, 2008

Reinventing Myself

As I think about reinventing my career, I feel much like I did at the end of college. Very idealistic and optimistic. When I began my career path then, I truly wanted to do something that would make the world a better place.

I got sidetracked by easy options, money, men. In the flurry to get ahead, I lost my idealism. I was having fun, making money and moving in a direction that wasn’t necessarily bad, just not what I’d intended. This time, when I start anew, I will stick to my ideals…I hope.

Posted by: whirlabout | November 13, 2008

Metamorphosis – In Life, Science, and Writing a Blog

Funny how we came up with the name “Blog of the Butterfly.” It was one of those Aha! moments that Oprah always talks about.

We were on a trail run, Penelopyfly and I, discussing how to reinvent our careers. It’s a favorite topic of ours – has been for more than a year – and is something we continually encourage each other to squeeze into the daily grind.

Read More…

Posted by: penelopefly | November 12, 2008

Between Kids and Food Prep, Distractions are My Life

ulyssespostWhen my girls started school this fall, I expected that the three hours gifted to me each morning would open a whole new world. In my fantasy, this window of time would find me wearing chic clothing- deep cut shirts, cashmere, a heel maybe? All items I avoided in my daily food flinging, running after, bending over mommy life. While my girls were happily finger painting and learning their letters, I imagined myself heading downtown to the independent coffee shop where community activists, homosexuals, drum circle members, liberal professionals and artists hang out (typically without their children). There I would power on my computer and sit for the entire time, sipping espresso and polishing a story until it was as perfect as a tumbled stone. Read More…

Posted by: whirlabout | November 10, 2008

Taking the Dread out of Going Back to Work

whirlaboutpostOne of the most frequent conversations I have with girlfriends (other than how to deal with temper tantrums and those embarrassing – but truthful – shout-outs about strangers in the grocery store) is how much we dread going back to work. If you take that statement literally, though, it’s not true at all. In fact I feel the opposite. I really look forward to working again. What I dread is returning to what I did before.

How can I endure that rigid drudgery of someone else defining my duties and prioritizing when they should be done? The mundane days and inability to move forward. Sitting in a cube, whispering into the phone, knowing that others can hear every word and move I make. Taking promotions that steer me further from my passion, simply because they are promotions.

How can I go back to that?

Read More…

Posted by: whirlabout | November 6, 2008

Recording Session Postponed

My cold lingers. The nasal hum continues. Another recording session postponed due to illness (sigh). But there is a bright side. My boys sure will have hefty immune systems when they grow up.

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