Thursday, January 10, 2019

Narrator Interview with John Solo


Greetings and happy 2019 to all!  This week, we're talking to FSC founder, narrator, John Solo.  Funny sounds, monsters and hunters, selkies and selfies, and DARK chocolate chips await us.  Enjoy, and join us on Facebook to request a review copy of one of John's newest releases.  Have a great Thursday!



FSC: What is your coffee house beverage of choice? 

John: Black. But maybe with some creamer. Or creamer and sugar. Or milk and sugar. Can a brother

get a cookie ‘round here?

FSC: Can you talk a little about your professional background? What are some of your favorite projects you've worked on?

John: I have been a narrator and audiobook producer for 6 years. I am also one of the founders of Falcon Sound Company. We (FSC) have produced over 400 audiobooks, countless e-learning courses, several cartoons, a few apps, and a lot of funny sounds. It is hard to name a favorite project… typically it is the one I’m currently working on. So… this week I’m finishing up “Shades of Grey - A Bubba the Monster Hunter Novella” by John G. Hartness, “The Selkie Princes Unexpected Omega - The Selkie Princes Book 3” by J.J. Masters, and prepping “Roommates” by Ann-Katrin Byrde. And I love all of them!

FSC; How did you get started as a narrator?

John: A friend referred us to a website called ACX. Several of us submitted auditions to a few books and received offers to produce said books. I acted as more of a producer in the beginning, while learning off of some of the fantastic narrators that we hired to come in and read. Slowly, I made the transition from producer to narrator, although I still often times wear both hats (to cover my bald head).

FSC: One thing that surprises many audiobook listeners is how long it takes to create an audiobook. What's the longest day you have spent recording?

John: Actually recording (he asks to no one in particular)? 10 hours. But that is very much not the norm. A normal day of recording is 3-4 hours of actual recording, which, with breaks, takes approximately 5-6 hours.

FSC: How long did your most recent project take you, and how long is the finished book?

John: I just hit send on “Shades of Grey - A Bubba the Monster Hunter Novella” by John G. Hartness yesterday. It came out to around 3.5 finished hours. Production took around 20 hours, about 7 of which were spent “in the booth”. That 20 hours doesn’t include preproduction time (prereading the book, prepping voices, research, etc…).

FSC: When you record, how do you break it up? Do you, for instance, read multiple chapters in one sitting?

John: I try and record for 30-45 minutes at a time, but I will only stop at a logical break in the story
(scene break, chapter break). So… if I’ve been recording for 45 minutes and I’m not to one of those things, I keep going.

FSC: How do you decide what kind of tone to take with each new book? What is it like reading different characters' dialogue lines?

John: How do you decide what constitutes ONE question? Jeesh! Hahahahahaha. I determine what the point of the story is during my preread. Is it a romance? A comedy? A farce? A drama? A mystery? That is not a hard and fast rule; some romance’s have a lot of comedy, some drama has a lot of mystery, and so on. But that will help me determine the overall tone of the book. As far as reading different characters’ dialogue lines… Being an audiobook narrator is like getting ALL of the acting roles in a play or movie, so for me, I get to make believe that I am ALL of the characters. It helps that I already hear multiple voices in my head.

FSC: What do you enjoy the most about narrating?

John: The travel. The adventure. Crazy days and wild nights!!! No, seriously, there are spans of days when I don’t change out of my pajama pants. I guess what I like most is that I get to tell stories all day long. I have been a fan of storytelling since I was a child. Now I get to do it for a living. What could be better?

FSC: When can we expect to hear from you with a new book?


John: Just calm down. It’ll be alright. I will have a new release next week! Hahahahaha. I had a very, very busy December, so I would imagine January should be filled with new audiobook releases from me. Also, don’t forget to check out some of my friends, Drew Bacca, Seb Yarrick, Nick J. Russo, Kenneth Obi, Colin Darcy… Did I forget anyone?


Check out this new release from author K.C. Wells. John Solo narrates "Truth and Betrayal.". Happy listening!


Find John and Falcon Sound Company on Facebook or on Audible.

Wednesday, January 9, 2019

Ask Andrew - Stress


Dear Andrew

What do you do to destress when you're on a deadline?

Dawn

Dear Dawn

When I'm on a deadline, which is almost always, I set daily goals for myself and then break the down into manageable pieces to work on during the day.  When I achieve each writing step, I allow myself some time to relax.  Often I get to read for half an hour or I work in the yard.

But quite often, yeah I know I'm showing my nerdy side, I play Pokémon Go.  I find it fun and it gets
me out of the house to walk and search for Pokémon.  I have been playing almost wince the game was released and I have two accounts.  The one account has collected one of almost every Pokémon available and the other isn't far behind.  Dominic thinks I'm completely nuts and obsessed, but it lets my mind relax and I have walked nearly 5000 kilometers playing the game.

I have a group of people in town that I play with.  We do raids together.  They're my Poke-friends, and one of them is going to have a baby soon, so he's the Poke-daddy.  You get the idea.  After playing for a half hour or so, I'm ready to go home and back to work.






Ask Andrew is your chance to ask questions of a gay romance author.  The questions can be about the writing process in general, writing sex scenes, gay men, sex, characters in romance, characters having sex... okay you probably get the picture.    I promise to answer your questions as frankly and with as much humor as I possibly can.

So if you have a question, please send it to andrewgreybooks@comcast.net.  This is different from my usual email so your questions don't get lost.  I will answer one question a week.

Please remember this is meant to be all in fun.  (I was going to say good, clean fun, but who wants that.)    So send me your questions and let's see what mischief we can get into.

Visit Andrew on Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/andrewgreybooks  and you can join Andrew's fan group All The Way With Andrew Grey.

Tuesday, January 8, 2019

Happy Birthday to BA from BA, Julia, Kiernan, and Sean


Tomorrow is BA's birthday! Wish her a happy!

XXOO

Julia

Visit our websites:

Sean's is http://www.seanmichaelwrites.com

Julia’s is http://www.juliatalbot.com

BA’s is http://www.batortuga.com

Kiernan's is www.KiernanKelly.com

Evil Plot Bunny: http://www.evilplotbunny.com/

Julia's Etsy Shop: https://www.etsy.com/shop/TurtlehatStudio

Facebook:

Sean -- https://www.facebook.com/SeanMichaelWrites

Julia -- https://www.facebook.com/juliatalbotauthor

BA -- https://www.facebook.com/batortuga

Kiernan -- https://www.facebook.com/kiernan.kelly

Saturday, January 5, 2019

BookBub Sale for Memories Follow By S.C. Wynne





Morning friends!
I have a book on sale right now that's only 99 cents for a few more days. It will go back up to $3.99 on Monday, January 7th. This story was written in Felice Steven's Kindle World.


Blurb:
Scottie Kinland works as the Kennel Manager for the Paws For Care veterinary clinic. Spending his days with animals is the only way he can feel safe. He has first-hand knowledge of how cold and calculating humans can be. How could he ever forget? He wears the scars on his face and his heart.

Lance Franklin likes to play the field. Still reeling from a lying cheating fiancée, he’s plowing through men like aspirin; only the pain of betrayal still stings. When he takes his mom’s dog in to the Paws For Care clinic, he’s immediately drawn to the quiet loner Scottie. But Scottie wants nothing to do with Lance.

Lance persists and he manages to forge a fragile relationship with Scottie. But just as both men begin to believe perhaps fate has something beautiful in store for them; the past collides with their future in a shocking way.



Chapter One

I knew better than to stick my hand anywhere near a frightened stray, so I kept my distance. I held the terrified German shepherd’s wary gaze, hesitating to push him too far in case he bolted past me into the street.
“It’s okay, boy.” I kept my voice calm and steady as I wiped my sweaty hands on my jeans. “I don’t mean to scare you.” I had the dog boxed in between me and the trash bin that he apparently called home, but I knew he could get around me if he really tried.
“You gotta get this mutt out of here,” the shop owner behind me grumbled.
“Shhhh.”
“He’s scaring all my customers.” The man glared at the dog. “He’s been here for two days, and he’s a public menace.”
“Keep your voice down,” I hissed. “Go back inside.”
“Why? Maybe I can help.” The guy sounded breathless.
“No, thanks.” His energy was all wrong. No way would he make the situation any better. “Let me handle this,” I growled.
The dog shifted and lowered his head. His black-and-caramel-colored coat was matted, and his hip bones jutted through the fur. He’d obviously been on the streets a while, and from his skittish behavior, I had a feeling he hadn’t been treated with kid gloves even before that.
“What are you, some kind of a dog expert?”
“Sort of.” I wasn’t a professional with a degree, but I worked as the kennel manager at Paws For Care, a veterinary clinic just down the street. “You made it worse by throwing that soda at him.”
“He barked at me.”
“He’s terrified. Can’t you see that?” I shook my head and tried to tune out the man. Jesus, humans were a pain in the ass sometimes. A thought occurred to me, and I spoke to the shop owner, who still hovered behind me. “Do you sell dog biscuits by any chance?”
“No.”
Damn.
“How about bagels?” I said the first food item that came to mind. Probably because I was starving and would have loved to have had a fresh cup of coffee and some breakfast before wrangling freaked-out dogs this early in the morning.
“Oh, yeah, I have some of those.”
“Could you get me a pack?”
“Cream cheese?”
I scowled. “What? No. Just the bagels.”
“Wait. Are you going to feed them to the dog?”
“I’m gonna try.” If I ever get them.
“Who’s going to pay for that?”
I turned my head and gave him an exasperated glance. “I’m trying to help this poor dog.”
“Buddy, bagels don’t grow on trees.”
I counted to ten and spoke as calmly as possible. “I’ll pay for them as soon as I have the dog in my custody. Okay?”
“Deal.” The guy disappeared around the corner toward his store.
Now that it was just me and the dog, I felt like maybe I would have more success. “Hey, boy. It’s okay. I promise.” The dog flicked his ears toward me, and he sat down. I took that as a good sign that maybe I could get through to him. His calmer demeanor also gave me comfort that he wasn’t a dog mad with rabies. I tightened my grip on the leash I held and inched closer. The dog cocked his head and pinned his golden gaze on me. “I’m not gonna hurt you. I just want to take you somewhere safe.” I knew my boss would never turn away any stray I brought in. Dr. Rafe Hazelton had a soft heart toward animals and people.
The dog stayed where he was as I took another step closer. He didn’t growl, just watched me with suspicion. The store owner stomped up behind me, and I tensed my muscles in case the animal tried to race past me.
“All I had left were blueberry bagels.”
I shot him a look over my shoulder as he held the bag out to me. “I don’t think he’s choosy.”
I took the food from him and tore through the plastic with my teeth. Then I tucked the package under my arm, pulling out one of the bagels with the hand that held the leash. The little clip on the lead jangled loudly and the dog shifted uneasily. I moved a step closer and dropped slowly to my haunches. When I held the bagel out, the dog licked its lips and stood up.
“Come on, baby. Give me a chance. I’m a nice guy when you get to know me,” I muttered.
A string of drool hung from the dog’s mouth, and he licked his chops again, whining softly.
“That’s right. Come to Uncle Scottie.” I pushed the bread closer to the dog. He stretched his neck and tried to get a bite of the bagel without coming closer. I grinned and pulled the food back a little so he’d have to get nearer to me. “Nice try.” He whined again and stomped his front paws as if he was annoyed.
“Ain’t you afraid he’s going to bite you?” The guy’s grating voice made the animal take a step back.
I clenched my jaw with irritation. The guy was useless. Why was he still hanging around? “No.” My tone was clipped. “Why don’t you go inside your store? I’ll come pay you when I’m done here.”
“Hey, if he rips your throat out don’t you want a witness? The dog ain’t going to call you an ambulance.”
“He’s not going to hurt me.”
“Famous last words.” He snorted. “I guess we’ll see.”
Go away, you annoying buffoon.
“Feel free to leave the area,” I said between gritted teeth.
“I don’t need a wild dog and a dead body near my store. I ain’t going anywhere until you have that crazy beast on the leash.” He exhaled roughly. “In fact, maybe I should just call animal control.”
“No!” I scared the dog when I spoke sharply and he retreated a few spaces. I licked my lips and tried to continue more calmly. “Please don’t do that. I have this under control.” Sweat broke out on my forehead as I spoke, and I tried to focus all my positive energy toward the shaking dog. The worst thing that could happen to this poor dog would be if he was taken to the pound. There was little doubt in my mind they’d put him down. He was a slightly older dog, and all anyone wanted were puppies.
“Calm down. I’ll give you a few more minutes.”
“Thanks,” I said curtly. What kind of an asshole called the pound on a dog? I took a bite of the bagel, and then I held the rest out to the dog. I knew it wasn’t typically how you got a dog to eat. But I was desperate. I’d seen Rafe do that with his son, Dylan, before to get him to eat, and I figured it couldn’t hurt. The dog licked his lips but stayed where he was.
My shoulder muscles burned from holding the food out to the animal, but I kept coaxing him softly and wiggling the bagel under his nose. I could feel impatient vibes coming off the store owner, but I did my best to ignore him. Animals took time to win over, and I wasn’t going to give up on this dog. I could tell he wasn’t a bad dog; he was just starving and overwhelmed.
Car horns honked and people yelled on the street, but the dog and I continued to face each other in a battle of wills. Perspiration rolled down my face and my arm ached, but still I held the bagel out to the dog. He inched closer, minute by minute, licking his lips and whining.
“I don’t blame you for not trusting me. I wouldn’t trust a stranger either.” I swallowed hard. “That’s probably why you’re still alive,” I muttered under my breath.
When the dog stepped forward and started nibbling on the bread I felt like I’d won the lottery. My chest tightened as the dog gnawed on the soft bread, watching me intently. “That’s it… that’s right.” I slowly raised the lead and slipped it over the dog’s head. I expected him to start jerking and going crazy, but he didn’t. When I dropped the bagel on the ground, he just kept attacking it hungrily.
“I’m glad that’s over.”
I jumped when the store owner spoke. I’d almost forgotten he was there. I reached in my pocket and pulled out a five-dollar bill. My face warmed when the guy’s gaze dropped to the six-inch scar on my cheek that ran along my jaw. “Here.”
The guy grabbed the cash. “You want change?”
With him staring at me so intently, I was too embarrassed to say yes, even though it was the last five dollars in my wallet. “No.” I just wanted to get out of there. The dog had devoured the bread, so I tugged gently on his collar and clucked my tongue. “Come on, boy. Let’s go.”
He licked the ground and looked up at me expectantly, his eyes locked on the package of bagels still tucked under my arm. I laughed and turned to leave the alley. He followed me hesitantly, jumping at the car horns and raised voices. I kept talking to him quietly, keeping the lead short so he didn’t have a chance to slip off. When we reached the clinic, I opened the door and breathed a sigh of relief that the waiting area was empty. It was still early enough the patients hadn’t started arriving yet.
“Morning, Scottie,” Patty the receptionist greeted me cheerfully. She’d worked for Dr. Hazelton for years and years. She’d once told me it was the best job she’d ever had, and unless she died or got fired, she was never leaving. Her gaze dropped to the dog I had with me. “Who do we have here?”
“I found him.” I hated that I sounded stiff and unfriendly. It wasn’t my intention. Patty was one of the nicest people I’d ever met, but I just had trouble talking to people. That was one reason I liked animals so much. They didn’t care if I said one word or not.
Patty didn’t seem to notice my tone. She just came around the counter and spoke softly to the dog. “Aww, poor baby. You look like you’ve had a hard time of it.” She winced. “He’s so skinny.”
“I know.”
“Hey, fella,” she cooed to the dog.
“I’m… I’m gonna separate him from the other animals and keep an eye on him for ten days. Make sure he’s not sick.”
“Okay.” She sighed. “He certainly doesn’t look like a sick dog. He’s filthy and thin, but his eyes look clear.”
“That’s what I thought too.” I gestured to the dog. “If he checks out okay, Dr. Hazelton probably won’t mind if we fatten him up and try to find him a home, right?”
Her eyes twinkled. “I’ve never known Dr. Hazelton to turn anyone away. Man or beast.” She smiled at me, and her gaze dropped to the bagels. “Did you bring breakfast?”
I grimaced. “I bribed the dog with food.”
“Good thinking.” The phone rang and she moved to answer it. I led the dog toward the back of the clinic where the kennel area was.
I put a muzzle on the dog just in case, and I bathed him gently in warm water and flea shampoo. He shook like a jackhammer as I rubbed his ears and lathered him up thoroughly, but he didn’t behave aggressively at all. He was horribly lean, but I could tell he was most likely a purebred. I wondered how such a fine animal had ended up starving on the busy, noisy streets of New York. Once he was rinsed off, I towel-dried him and pulled off the muzzle.
He wagged his tail and jumped around like a puppy for a few seconds, which made my heart happy. “I knew there was a real dog in there somewhere.” He flicked his ears and moved away from me to sit in the corner. He obviously wasn’t a hundred percent sure about me yet. I smiled and nodded knowingly. “I get it, boy. Trust is earned.” I pushed ugly memories away. “And even then, sometimes it isn’t deserved.”
I took him to a large clean cage and then headed off to tend to the rest of the animals.


Hope you enjoyed that! If you're interested in buying the book I'll drop some links below!
S.C.


Tuesday, January 1, 2019

Happy New year!


Visit our websites:

Sean's is http://www.seanmichaelwrites.com

Julia’s is http://www.juliatalbot.com

BA’s is http://www.batortuga.com

Kiernan's is www.KiernanKelly.com

Evil Plot Bunny: http://www.evilplotbunny.com/

Julia's Etsy Shop: https://www.etsy.com/shop/TurtlehatStudio

Facebook:

Sean -- https://www.facebook.com/SeanMichaelWrites

Julia -- https://www.facebook.com/juliatalbotauthor

BA -- https://www.facebook.com/batortuga

Kiernan -- https://www.facebook.com/kiernan.kelly

Saturday, December 22, 2018

Happy Holidays By S.C. Wynne



Image result for merry christmas

Good Morning, all!

This is my last post before Christmas, and I wanted to wish you all a Merry Christmas, Happy Holiday!

I hope you have family or friends you can spend time with, and I hope you get a few days off during this season. It's important that we remember the good things in life because there are always plenty of reminders about the bad. Why is it we have to work harder to focus on the good? I'd love to change that about myself.

I'll spend Christmas day with my whole family, and we will no doubt eat too much. I hope everybody gets along, and that there is much merriment to be had. :) As I get older Christmas truly isn't about the gifts, it really is about spending time with the people I love.

So from my family to yours, Merry Christmas!

S.C.
www. scwynne.com


Thursday, December 20, 2018

Narrator Interview with Drew Bacca


Good day in the cafe!  This week we get the chance to talk with narrator Drew Bacca.  We'll be giving away one of his most recent (and favorite) narrations, Suzi Hawke's "Peppermint Spiced Omega."  A sweet treat just in time for the holidays! We'd also like to wish you a fun, happy and safe holiday season!



FSC: What is your coffee house beverage of choice?

Drew: Does making coffee at my house count? My prescription: Peet’s Aged Sumatra, dark roast, whole beans. Grind a cup’s worth, heat water to 180°, brew in a press pot for 3 minutes stirring frequently. Add two sugars, and half & half or evaporated milk until it’s roughly the color of milk chocolate.

FSC: Can you talk a little about your professional background? What are some of your favorite projects you've worked on?


Drew: I actually have very little formal training at any of this—I’ve had to learn by trial and error what works as I went along. I’m kind of awed that people have responded so well.

As for favorite projects, right now it’s probably Peppermint Spiced Omega from Susi Hawke’s Hollydale series. One of the leads, Tom Collins, is a total force of nature who goes from being this kind of puckish scene-stealer in the other books to being a three-dimensional character in his own right. Learning to cultivate my Inner Tom has been very good for me.

FSC: How did you get started as a narrator?

Drew: One moment I was delivering pizza to you guys at Falcon, the next I was in a recording booth in front of a mic and a screen. I’m still not sure exactly what went down, my therapist says it’s probably best not to dig too deep.

FSC: And you haven't brought us pizza since! One thing that surprises many audiobook listeners is how long it takes to create an audiobook. What's the longest day you have spent recording?

Drew: Actually sitting in the booth talking? Maybe three hours max. My voice starts to conk if I try to push it, and my performance goes pfft because then I’m thinking about technique instead of letting myself be the character moment to moment. But then my workflow is unusual in that whatever I record any given morning, I like to have it done and mastered by the time I knock off for the night. Makes for an 8-10 hour workday, depending on what else I’ve got going.

FSC: How long did your most recent project take you, and how long is the finished book?

Drew: My most recent project came out around 3 hours of finished audio. Production was done over the span of 5 workdays or so, in between podcasts and doctor appointments and critter-sitting for my mom.

FSC: When you record, how do you break it up? Do you, for instance, read multiple chapters in one sitting?  

Drew: Single sitting, absolutely. It’s a lot easier for me to wake up, caffinate, and get right into the zone than if I tried to have other parts of my day happen first. And once I get in I’m staying there, cause who knows what baggage I’ll bring with me when I come back? If I need to clear my mind between chapters I’ll pick up my bass or a video game for 10 minutes or so, but nothing too thinky.

FSC: How do you decide what kind of tone to take with each new book? What is it like reading different characters' dialogue lines?

Drew: Really, everything I need to know is already there on the page. The author made those decisions when they created the world and story, I just try to pick up on their voice and interpret it. And sometimes they’ll leave room for me to improvise which is one of my favorite things to do, but it’s always within the context of this is the author’s show. I’m just a player in the band.

With dialogue, I make a pretty detailed set of notes for each character—where the sound resonates from, facial expressions, even body language sometimes. It’s the voice actor’s version of getting into costume. So when I cock an eyebrow just so, put on a warm smirk, and murmur “Very good. I must say, I’m amazed,” that gives my mind the signal that Hot Daddy Colin is about to speak and it’s time to get out his way and let it happen. I really try to think about it as little as possible while I’m narrating.

FSC: What do you enjoy the most about narrating?

Drew: Sheesh. What don’t I enjoy? I enjoy having the freedom to be creative every day, and the flexibility to lead the strange life I do. I enjoy the challenge of learning how people think who aren’t necessarily like me, and the profound empathy that engenders. I love the way narrating has brought me together with so many amazing people, authors and listeners included. It’s awe-inspiring, and humbling.

FSC: When can we expect to hear from you with a new book?

Drew: As I type this I just wrapped on Champagne Spiced Omega, the fourth book in Susi Hawke’s Hollydale series, yesterday. I’m not sure exactly how the wheels turn at Audible, but the thought is that it’ll be available in time for New Year’s.

We're giving away a copy of "Peppermint Spiced Omega!" Tell us on Facebook What your favorite holiday tradition is, spicy or not, for your chance to win. Thanks for playing, and as always, happy listening!

Find Drew and Falcon Sound Company on Facebook, or at www.falconsoundcompany.com. To find more of Drew's work, check out his narrator page on Audible.