VooDoo vs. VO Do’s

by | Jul 25, 2011 | VO Community | 7 comments


Maybe the mention of Haiti on the news so much has addle-pated my brain.

Maybe 4am is NOT such a great time to get to bed day after day.

Maybe it’s the odd shooting pains in my foot, neck, and eyes.

Whatever the reason, I’ve had this idea that won’t leave me alone, so maybe if I put it down on virtual paper, I’ll finally find relief.

‘So many illusions surround the business of voice-over.  To get a really – and I mean SOLID – grip on what lies ahead when you accept VO as a field of endeavour, you should certainly consult the excellent online publication that Peter O’Connell has authored called  “The VoiceOver Entrance Exam”.  It’s the long version of what I’m about to foist on you.

Below, you’ll find a short-hand version I concocted on my own called VooDoo vs. VO Do’s.

You’ll probably find that my little chart below is irreverent, a stretch, kinda kooky (honestly), but there are some “bones” of truth therein if you decide to chance a look.

Basically it follows the trail of VO development from start to finish, and whether you want to depend on Voodoo to succeed, or just “do” the right things from the start.

Let me know what you think.



VO Do’s

Consulting the Oracle

I know! I’ll be a voice-actor Everybody tells me I have a great voice and I did some radio once.It’s so easy, and sacks of money will be delivered to my door.

Research, consider available financial resources, Google everything VO, ask questions, hang out in forums, talk to pros, and don’t quit your day job.

Yes, I want to stick pins in dolls

Tell significant other you’re gonna make millions, brag to your friends on FaceBook, practice your best Morgan Freeman imitation

Do business plan, begin making contacts in the business, read everything out loud, do NOT skip past commercials on TIVO, and hang out at VO-BB and VU constantly

Finding the right Doll

Buy a hand-held mic at Radio Shack, use your iPhone earplugs,some K-mart speakers, and record in the bathroom

Go to Guitar Center and try out affordable mics till you find one that works for you. Get a decent set of medium-priced Sony or Sennheiser cans, and treat a corner of your office with Aurelex

Finding the right pins

Use YouTube, Vimeo, or Stickam to record your voice while sporting your new haircut ‘n’ shades

Download the latest version of Audacity or invest <$50 in any one of a dozen or more decent audio-editing software packages

Getting word out to the Tribe

Tweet endlessly about how great you are. Brag on FaceBook, make a fool of yourself on YouTube and MySpace

Make a few practiced cold-calls. Consider launching an e-mail campaign to logical leads. Maybe begin a blog or a newsletter

Getting inspiration from the great Spirit

You don’t need this step, ‘cause you’ve been imbued with God-given powers of articulation

Begin seeking coaching immediately. Never stop. Ask for critiques, go to conferences, attend seminars

Attaining Apprentice VooDoo Doc status

Repeat lines from video games as you play, and occasionally practice the announcer voice from auto dealer ads on TV

Read everything out loud, read for the blind, read for your friends, download online practice copy, work on mic technique, listen to others

Proving your Powers

Produce your own demo using kick-ass hip-hop tracks, and copy you stole off of MTV. Include spot from Budweiser

Find a decent studio + coach + producer who is willing to walk you through a professional demo after considerable coaching

Choosing the right Loincloth

Grab a pic of a mic on Google images. Find a word that rhymes with voice. Colors: blue if you’re a guy, pink/purple for women.

Ask your friends to describe you In 3 words, decide on your niche and your best qualities. Find a tasteful way to represent that while getting out your message.



Seeking Victims

Join every subscription service and Pay-to-Play site based solely on the promises they make, and how good their website looks

Listen other’s advice, but find your own way by matching your best talents with the best opportunities. Curry relationships, plant seeds, be persistent.

Word of your Magic gets around because….

Well…you actually can’t depend on this, so you’re constantly searching for new suckers customers

You are professional, timely, and considerate. You produce consistently good work, & you follow-up and call back.

Your Divine Reputation is Sealed for all time

Mostly because you realize you never had the freelancing enterprising spirit to carry this off in the first place, and got a job as a Network Marketing “expert” instead.

You’re a person of your word.
You strive to always be better.
You give as much or more than you get.
You help and mentor others.
You take pride in your craft, your profession and your peers.



CourVO Newsletter


  1. Karen Commins

    Greetings, Dave! This post cracks me up! I don’t know which is funnier — the picture or the text. Just because it’s funny doesn’t mean it isn’t TRUE.

    You forgot one thing for your chart that goes somewhere around the “Seeking Victims”/”Word of Your Magic” phases — LIGHT THE CANDLE.

    VooDoo: By chanting a few words over a lit candle, your dreams of megastardom are sure to materialize. No action is required. This is the common view of the Law of Attraction, as people choose to completely ignore the fact that the dictionary is the only place where SUCCESS comes before WORK.

    VO Do: When you burn the candle at both ends, you’ll soon run out of wick!

    I’m concerned about your comments about pain and your lack of sleep. Pain is your body’s way of telling you something. By working so hard with a day job and a busy voice-over career — not to mention your family, religious, civic, and other responsibilities — I’m concerned that you may be putting your health in jeopardy.

    It’s important to note on the VO Do side that a voice talent can still enter/maintain the exalted “Divine Reputation” phase while enjoying balance in their life! 🙂

    Thanks for a great post, and best wishes always for your continued success!

    Karen Commins

  2. Rick Lance

    Yeah… I think you covered it all, Dave!

    • CourVO

      Thanks for stopping by, Rick…I was in a strange mood, I think, when I wrote that.

      warm regards,

      Dave C

  3. steven

    I love this…simply love it.

    • CourVO

      That means a lot coming from you, Steve….thanks!


  4. Martin

    This is funny as hell, Dave. I loved it! Everyone should read this…good job.


    • CourVO


      ‘Glad you liked it…I had fun putting it together…and hey!….there’s even a little truth to it! :))

      Thanks for stopping by and commenting.

      Dave C


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