Last week’s blogs were the intellectual overflow of VO Atlanta. When you’re around that much inspiration, the mind just churns with ideas.
And while the blog saw one of the highest readerships EVAR last week…there wasn’t universal agreement to what I had to say. That’s alright. I don’t expect 100% acceptance…just hope to provoke some thought.
Later, the gentleman who posted that reaction emailed me personally to share his story and say: “…I took umbrage with the post because I felt that the way I operate and grow my business as a “newbie” was being condescended to, and I am absolutely positive that that is not where you come from…”
He’s right. Condescension is never my intention.
I’m glad he came to that conclusion, and we’ve been emailing back ‘n’ forth ever since. In fact, I’m very grateful for this voice actor’s point of view. Heck, in many ways I still think of myself as a newbie. But now I realize that my blogs and my position in WoVO might carry more weight than I intend. I’m pretty sure I’m starting to take some of my progress for granted. Immersing myself in VO-land for about 9 years now has made me somewhat jaded.
In those 9 years, I’ve never seen a universally satisfying answer to the rates question. If anything, it’s gotten more complicated. Labels don’t help:
…and yet it’s hard not to find some sort of descriptive term for our peers. As humans and voice actors, we tend to put people into tribes: Union members, New Yorkers, the LA crowd, audiobook narrators, gamers, and so forth. All of which only underscores that there’s no easy answer, there’s no monolithically correct epitome of a voice actor…AND…that there’s room for everybody without any one segment getting their panties in a wad.
That goes for rates, too. I’ve been going back ‘n’ forth lately with the supporters of Bill DeWees’ Fiverr “find”. You’ll remember Bill’s more-than-coincidental contact with Lance Tamashiro resulted in DeWees launching a program called the VO Success Formula. The program is predicated on the discovery that Tamashiro (admittedly not a voice actor) has devised a method for reportedly making thousands from Fiverr leads, concentrating only an hour-a-day on the process.
Without taking sides here ‘n’ now on this claim, I CAN tell you that I’m on the schedule to do a half-hour podcast with Lance next week. Tamashiro is a bit of a phenom in the world of entrepreneurial/freelance business people, and I look forward to the conversation.
It all comes back to this notion of the marketplace being big enough to accommodate many points of view. You don’t have to agree with all other approaches. You can even militate against certain POV’s. At WoVO, we’ve published our best practices for coaches, talent, and producers. But WoVO’s line of reasoning is that a person educated to, and aware of the many vectors to success can choose their own path, and then they’ve only got themselves to blame if it doesn’t work out. We further posit that an educated and aware voice actor will see the sense in seeking rates that lift the entire community of their peers.