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Relearning Old Lessons

I remember the first time that I ever had to write a piece for radio.

It was a script for a package I was making for BBC News in Glasgow about kids activities during the Easter Holidays. I had gone out to the location got lots of great audio came back and edited it up into a package.

But I had no idea how to begin writing the script.

Luckily one of my colleagues in the newsroom, Sandy Murray, took time out of his busy day to sit down and find out what I wanted to say. Within 20 minutes we’d knocked up a few lines of script and I was able to record them and it sounded fine.

The takeaway for me wasn’t about writing style. Instead I learned not to be afraid to try something new. People are invariably helpful and generous with their knowledge and time. So thanks to Sandy’s help I was started and over the years I’ve written countless scripts.  Most of them have been alright!

This lesson come back to me in the last couple of months while I’ve been trying to reinvent myself as a voice over.

I know what I want to do. Heck, I’ve made a living with my voice since the mid 1980s. But there is no replacement for reaching out to talented colleagues and friends for tips and advice on converting myself from a “radio presenter” to somebody who can use his voice in a variety of ways.

As before I’ve learned that the key is not to do what I’ve always done, get past my nerves and try something altogether new.

So I’ve spent weeks with scripts, a revised posture and all manner of different settings trying to find a different voice. One that still recognisably me but is slightly less DJ-ish.

I’m not quite at the point where I want to advertise myself with a showreel or for that matter share where I feel I’ve got to with a few people.

But I know I’m making progress and I’ll soon be able to tout for work in the field I always thought I was not quite good enough to get work in.

All thanks to advice and support from friends and colleagues – for which I thank you.

Author: johnco

Born in 1963, been involved in radio since 1977.

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