The Voice Over
My mom is a ham. She's sociable, funny, and dramatic. Could she have been an actor? After her recent stint in the recording booth, I think so.
She's 80 and has Alzheimer's. But that didn't stop her from agreeing to appear in my book trailer or doing the voice over for the 30-second teaser.
The idea of remembering a speaking part was, of course, daunting. I had to remind her a couple of times she'd be reading from the script and didn't have to memorize anything. I also had to promise to make dinner and get her a glass of Chardonnay.
On the way to the studio, she was chatty and nervous. When we got there, I could see just a bit of apprehension and fear in her eyes. At that moment, if not for the sausage and peppers, pasta, and wine, she would've turned back.
When she sat in front of the microphone and held up the script, the apprehension and fear vanished under an avalanche of directives and questions.
(grabs chair) "This is my chair."
(grabs and reads script) "Is this it? That's all I have to say?"
(points to editor/filmmaker) "I'm practicing, don't record, yet."
(looks at editor/filmmaker) "Is that loud enough?"
(pushes editor/filmmaker's hand away) "The mic is close enough! I have to see the script."
"Is this all the light?" (looks around booth) "Is there more light in here?"
It might be pertinent to note here that I had to pour wine for the editor/filmmaker after the session, as well. The editor/filmmaker was, in fact, my son. Her grandson.
Three generations in the booth and the youngest was in charge. He graciously asked me for notes after the first take. Other than that, I let the two of them, grandson and grandmother, work it out. And work it out they did. I couldn't be prouder of their efforts and the quality of work they produced. Especially my mom, who didn't let the fear and darkness of Alzheimer's keep her from shining in the recording booth.
As any debut novelist would be, I'm over-the-moon excited about the book trailer. I can't wait to use it to drive pre-sales ahead of my book's release.
To also have the honor of working with the creative talents of my mom and son to make it happen was a rare gift. It's a memory I'll cherish and for which I'll be eternally grateful.