One of the country’s top voice-over talents shares his secrets to success in this insider’s guide to the voice-over industry.Not only does veteran actor Harlan Hogan offer a fascinating personal account of the crazed clients, practical jokes, and amazing coincidences encountered during his twenty-five year career, he also provides a wealth of tested tips for surviving and thriving as a voice-over actor.
This indispensable guide features dozens of techniques to help readers train their voices, gain experience, make a demo, join unions, get an agent, and more. It also includes strategies for finding work in venues outside film and television, including games, automated telephone systems, and even Web sites. Actors, broadcasters, and anyone else who longs to make money speaking into a microphone will cherish this informative, insightful, and often hilarious glimpse at the business.
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29 of 30 found the following review helpful:
The Real Deal Dec 04, 2002
By Jay Rose
I never met Harlan Hogan, but I also started in radio and soon switched to commercial production. Only I was doing it from the other side of the glass, as engineer--and then director--of quite a few thousand national and regional spots, working with hundreds of VO talents on the East Coast and LA. So I know what these guys go through.
Everything Harlan writes is true: the techniques, the way the business works, the friendships that form between actors competing for the same jobs, the life. Except his way of telling it is funnier than real life.
This is actually two books, interleaved. Chapters alternate between sage (and hard-earned) advice on polishing voice-acting performing and job-getting skills, and some of the things Harlan had to go through to learn these lesions. If you're an announcer, engineer, or sharp producer, you'll chuckle over the war stories. If you're trying to break into the business, you couldn't have a better teacher.
15 of 15 found the following review helpful:
VO: Tales and Techniques of a Voice-Over Actor Aug 07, 2003
I am a new vo actor. A wanna-be. I have a good voice, or have always been told, and was ready to knock everyone dead. I enrolled in a class for vo's and I was horrible. I did everything wrong. I needed to do something. So, I bought Harlan's book, VO: Tales and Techniques of a Voice Over Actor. It is laugh out loud funny as he describes his first days and the entire history of his experience in the business.
Not only is it thouroughly entertaining and funny, I learned so much. After I read the book and went back to class, my teacher was shocked! I am sure that prior to having read the book, my performance warranted the, "You better find a new career choice" speech. However, instead of the speech, I was told how much I had grown and how funny I was. This is due the book.
Buy it and enjoy it!
6 of 6 found the following review helpful:
Harlan's insights and tips are crucial for all v/o and commercial actors May 05, 2006
By Kenneth Calhoun
Harlan's tips and insights are great to learn from; as a master voiceover actor and personality, I found it useful to read his tales and techniques. Largely autobiographical, Harlan's book explains what it's like, the "real world" of commercial v/o, and provides a realistic perspective on how to approach and manage your career; in v/o and/or commercial acting.
The techniques he shares are insightful, on how to read and interpret your copy, and connect with the listener.
Plus, he's an interesting "character" ... I read this book cover to cover, it was that interesting. And useful.
Excellent job, Harlan!
5 of 5 found the following review helpful:
It kept me up all night! Mar 13, 2003
By Julie Williams, VO and VO Instructor
In my 25 years as a VO talent and instructor (author of How To Make Money in Voice-Overs Even if You Don't Live in NY or LA) THIS is the best VO book I've ever read. Harlan not only entertains with hilarious stories --one after another-- that every professional talent can relate to... he mixes his entertainment with more "how to" facts than the straight "how to" VO books! He's direct, to the point, informative, and entertaining, all at the same time! I recommend it for talent of ALL levels. In fact, I want to make it available at my future VO workshops. Harlan --what you did here was amazing! Thank you for the laughs.. and for another fabulous resource to recommend to those who ask me about getting into voiceovers!
5 of 5 found the following review helpful:
Like talking with a friend May 15, 2007
By G. Littlefield
Harlan Hogan provides a lot of explanation of how things work in the VO world (or at least as they did in 2002, when this book was written). He gives great advice while lightly touching on subjects like running your business, jargon, union vs. "pre-union", etc. However, he also offers some insight that beginning voice actors aren't likely to find in a lot of other books. Harlan does this by recounting stories from his own experience that not only entertain, but relate to the major points of each section. He also lets the reader in on inside jokes of the trade like "Blooper's Soap" and the infamous Findus Foods session with Orson Welles. Sure, they're easily Google-able, but how are they woven into the fabric of the industry?
I've done radio for a dozen years, switched to the computer tech side
for another half-dozen and now I'm studying and working on figuring out
where I will best fit into the VO market. This book not only confirmed
a lot of things I felt instinctively, but it also helped me to not
listen so much to the "what if" voice that we all carry with us.
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