So I had dinner with my family last night in honor of my brother's 40th birthday. Our parents were there, and I was seated across from them in a noisy chain restaurant, so that's pretty much who I talked to. Like any good son, I want my parents to know I'm doing well in the world and that I want to make them proud. Now, I've been a voice actor for 16 months, and doing it exclusively for a month and a half. I know that's not a lot of time, but I'm wondering how much longer it'll have to be before I stop having to follow up "Things are going well, I've got work lined up!" with "..in voiceover. Because I'm a voice actor." I think I've gotten to the point where I've explained what I do enough times and have fielded enough odd questions that my folks finally kind of understand what I do. The daily marketing routine, the maintaining a web presence, the myriad of types of voiceover I perform...it's kind of tough to sum up, or even to sell as a "real" job. One of The big thing I have to combat, of course, is that the encouragement I get is usually "This'll be your big break!" to pretty much anything that gets aired.
So despite having a pretty good first year in VO, my dinner table accolades include background work in two TV shows and a rushed political ad (PRO-tip: if you plan to specialize in industrials, realize that it's very difficult to even acquire copies of the work you do, let alone have anybody see it). Which is still cool, I guess. At least I don't have to talk about DJ'ing weddings anymore.
Oh, and audiobooks. They get audiobooks too. I know that because for some reason, instead of asking how work's going, my folks ask, "What book are you reading?" So now I'm just going to pretend that all VO is "reading books" and let them in on what's happening.
Also, my mom asked if I do all the cooking now that my wife's business has taken off.
So I guess the moral is don't seek fame at any level, even at the dinner table. A lot of my career is just going to be between my clients and me, and that's fine. We can just skip the work talk next time and go straight into telling the story of my birth that I can believe we're still recounting.