Monday, August 25, 2008

GKN Weekly Update 8/25/08

Good Monday to Ya!

Can you believe that Labor Day Weekend is almost here? Then it's back to school! The only thing I miss about school is buying new stuff. I love office supplies!

We had some good things happen last week...

I had a great recording session for my buddy Chad Orr of Rennert Translation Group. I narrated a commercial for their website at CKP Media. I'll post it when it's ready!

Speaking of stuff that's ready to post, here is the online tutorial I narrated for Knovel courtesy of Eyeview Digital.

I also had a great audition for Computer Associates at Acting Management courtesy of Ingrid French. While there I ran into fellow GKN member Tiffany Clementi. It was great seeing you, Tiff!

I recorded more lines and Foley stuff for Angelo's latest sci-fi radio drama "The Empress Blair Project". I got to play a soap opera actor! Saying that I was over-the-top was an understatement...

TIP OF THE WEEK: My personal highlight of the week was watching my friend Carly's three-month old girl Asha for a day.

Isn't she beautiful? I called that day "baby-daddy training". Mostly we danced to Beatles tunes and she slept a lot, but it meant a lot to me. For those of you who don't know, I am "clinically single" but would very much like to have a child someday. Why? For a bunch of reasons, but one of the big ones is that life is meant to be shared. To be alone is both safe and scary at the same time and I'm very happy that so many people are willing to share their lives and the lives of their children with me. Be thankful that you are, too.

QUOTE OF THE WEEK: He attacked everything in life with a mix of extraordinary genius and naive incompetence, and it was often difficult to tell which was which. Douglas Adams

FOOD FOR THOUGHT: Who shares their life with you? When was the last time you thanked them for it?

Have a great week!

Monday, August 18, 2008

GKN Weekly Update 8/18/08

Good morning!

Man, is the summer just ripping by or what? I hope you've been able to hit the beach/lake/park or whatever floats your boat. I was supposed to go to a BBQ yesterday but I had to redo a project since I recorded it in mono and they needed it in stereo. Whoops!

Here's the latest entry in the "Saga of the Stone"; the good news is that it moved, a lot! So that means surgery is held off for three more weeks since they want to give it time to pass. The bad news is three more weeks of power-chugging water, cranberry juice, etc. and the occasional bouts of discomfort and (hopefully not!) pain. OK then, on to less icky things!

Last week I had two VO sessions for ETS in Princeton and I landed a new client! Have any of you heard of Obama Girl? She makes these goofy videos where she sings about how much she loves Barack Obama. I've watched some of them and they're pretty funny! Anyway, "Obama Girl" is Amber Lee Ettinger and she released a song online which has gotten some attention. They're shooting a music video to go with it as well as a promo video promoting the whole thing. I was hired to narrate the promo video! I recorded it at Young & Rubicam last week and it should air online soon.

We had a lot of Project TERRA action last week! The EPK has been overhauled and it looks great! We also have an updated storyboard which also looks great. We found a production company in California to produce the series once we raise the funds. Now all we need is the money. So, does anyone have $5.4 million on them?

TIP OF THE WEEK: Many of my fellow VO talents returned from the VOICE 2008 conference in LA. I heard that a wonderful time was had by all, including some fellow GKN members. We would love to hear your stories so please share!

Anyway, some interesting dialogues have popped up on various blogs & forums as a result. In one of the threads came up those pesky traits which we all have: fear and ego. It's amazing how many of our choices are influenced by them. For some people, ALL of their decisions are fear/ego-driven. This year one of my focuses has been to determine how many of my decisions are based on those lovely attributes. The answer is: less than there used to be but still far more than I'd like. I won't bore you with which parts of my life they dominate but needless to say they get in my way more than I care to admit.

So here's the tip: don't let fear and your ego control your life. Both are good in small doses but too much drives other people & opportunities away from you. Don't restrict your life!

QUOTE OF THE WEEK: If you can't be a muse, at least be amusing! Anonymous

FOOD FOR THOUGHT: What are you afraid of?

Have a great week!

Monday, August 11, 2008

GKN Weekly Update 8/11/08

Good Morning To Ya!

I hope everyone had a pleasant weekend. Mine was sublimely uneventful. I'm still taking it easy since the "you know what" still hasn't left the building. Fortunately I see my urologist in about an hour so I'll keep you posted.

Last week definitely picked up! I had three gigs:

I landed a new client! Eyeview hired me to narrate three scripts for an online tutorial about Knovel, a new search engine designed for scientists & engineers.

I narrated three more scripts for Rider University's "Top Careers" video series, courtesy of Films Media Group.

I had an ETS gig in Princeton but this one was a little different. I narrated some ESL tests specifically for the nation of Qatar. I played roles ranging between 10 and 13 years of age. I sounded squeaky!

I also took the time to overhaul my VO rate sheet. Thanks to many of the Voiceover Bulletin Board members for their input, especially Dave Courvosier!

I added two websites to my daily job search: and I'll let you know if I get any bites...

TIP OF THE WEEK: The reason why I overhauled my rate sheet is because I put a bid in for a project recently and was told that it was "outrageous". Submitting an appropriate bid in the voiceover industry can be a bit of a sticky wicket. There are so many different kinds of VO gigs and the rate can be determined by the word, the page, the minute, or the hour. You also have to take into account whether you're recording from your home or a remote studio. If you record from home, you may be asked to edit it, add music, add sound effects, etc. On top of all that, the rates change depending on the location (local, regional, national). That's a lot to take into account!

That leads me to the tip: know your value in the marketplace. Do your homework. Ask questions. Don't be afraid to ask what your peers charge. Come up with a rate sheet that works for you. Once you determine your value, stick to it. Have a spine, as the great Phillip Banks would say. Don't work below your value!

QUOTE OF THE WEEK: It takes considerable knowledge just to realize the extent of your ignorance. Thomas Sowell

FOOD FOR THOUGHT: What is your value in the marketplace? Have you ever sold yourself short?

Have a great week!

Monday, August 4, 2008

GKN Weekly Update 8/4/08

Good Monday to ya!

How's tricks? I feel better today than I have in a while! I'm back to my old energy level (which is pretty damn high) even though that stone is still wriggling about. I'm really looking forward to getting back on track this week.

Career-wise, July was the slowest month I've ever had. It kind of worked out since I was laid up for a good part of it. The strange part was that June was one of my best months ever so it kind of balanced out. Go figure!

A couple of good things did happen last week. Ingrid French sent me on a VO audition for the National Park Association.

The big news is that I was reviewed for my narration of "Mini-Masterpieces of Science Fiction". Here's an excerpt...

"...his performance of 'Kin' by Bruce McAllister, is stunning..."

"Dheere uses pacing and tone to create a memorable alien that is both menacing and sympathetic at the same time. His narration makes the story come alive... "

"Another story skillfully handled by Dheere is 'None So Blind,' by Joe Haldeman. This story presents some intriguing ideas and narrator Dheere amazes by easily phrasing such texts as, 'Where Cletus divided his time between the musky charms of his beloved and the sterile cubicles of Institute Marey, learning how squids learn things, which was by serotonin pushing adeylate cyclase to catalyze the synthesis of cylic adenosine monophosphate in just the right place.' Wonder how many times he had to record that sentence to get it exactly right?"

Actually, it only took two takes! To hear "Kin" in its entirety you can go here. To hear a sample of "The Days Between", click here. A big "thank you" goes out to Allen Kaster of Infinivox for casting me!

TIP OF THE WEEK: Last week I mentioned that my friend Kara Edwards expressed concern over blog traffic. It started a wonderful exchange of ideas among about a dozen of us via email. We decided that we will help increase each others internet presence. Every week we will make it a point to visit each others blogs and post comments to either start or maintain thoughtful discussions. We won't go crazy, just a few a week to get the ball rolling. We also agreed to link up to each others online communities, whether it's Facebook, My Blog Log, etc.

I think this is a great idea! It's so important for us to do whatever we can to increase our sense of community in our industry. With that in mind, I humbly ask you to go to my home page At the bottom of the page are icons with links to all of the networking sites I'm a part of. Please add me to your friends list and I will reciprocate.

Also, please share with the GKN if you post blogs and we will make an effort to contribute to yours. I would love nothing more than to be a part of some great discussions generated by you. Why should I do all the talking?!

QUOTE OF THE WEEK: All things have an end; except for sausages, which have two ends. Viking Proverb

FOOD FOR THOUGHT:How can you contribute to our industry community? Do you have any interesting ideas to share?

Have a great week!