Voicing a Character

If you’d like to do the voice of a minor character, please send a sample of a few lines to hpmorpodcast@gmail.com Any file type will do, I have converters.

If you have any sort of microphone (many laptops come with them built-in, and most gamers will have a headset) and a computer you can record your voice. Windows comes with Sound Recorder, the link explains how to use it (basically click-and-record). I don’t own a Mac, but I hear it comes with SimpleSound. If you want to get fancy, you can download Audacity for free, which is what I use for recording and editing, but that’s probably overkill.

All the lines for available minor parts can be found in this file:

Misc HPMoR Roles

I’ve been asked if I prefer each line in its own file or all lines in a single file. I honestly have no preference, there’s plenty of alt-tabbing in either case. Do whichever is easier for you.

There are two things you can do to help sound quality. First, do what you can to minimize echo. Recording in a room with lots of stuff on the walls is preferable (just hanging a sheet up can help). The ideal situation is recording in a walk-in closet (all those hanging clothes absorb the sound beautifully) but I realize most people don’t have those. In any case, almost every recording has some echo in it, it’s not a huge deal.

Second, do not speak directly into the microphone. Have it off to the side a bit, so your words go past it. The microphone will still pick up the sound just fine, and this will prevent the air you force out while speaking from impacting too forcefully on the microphone pick-ups. You can actually feel this yourself if you put your hand in front of your mouth and say “pop” – that brush of air you feel will cause popping and cracking in the sound file.

Minimizing background noise is also good.

Don’t worry about being too histrionic, I’ve found that it’s actually pretty hard for most people to over-act, generally people tend to be too reserved and not get enough emotion in the voice. Typical Illusion of Transparency stuff, no one else can feel what you’re feeling so you really gotta work hard to put it into the voice. It’ll feel like you’re overacting, but you’re not.

One piece of advice I give almost everyone: slow down, you’re reading too fast. Seems to be a common thing people do when reading text, especially if they’ve already read it before. Go slower.

All that being said, these are just suggestions – I accept the majority of submissions. The most important thing is to sit down, click that record button, read a few lines, and send it off. That is always the hardest step, once you have that out of the way the rest is easy.

13 Responses to Voicing a Character

  1. Breanna says:

    Hi! I’ve recently started listening to the podcast and I’m interested in voicing a character. Are there any characters that haven’t been claimed yet? Thanks!

    -Bree

    • Eneasz says:

      Yes, there are quite a few, but no major ones anymore. I’m in the process of updating the “Available Roles” file, it should be ready in about a week. I’ll reply here again when it is. :)

    • Eneasz says:

      OK, I’ve updated the file, please see the link “Misc HPMoR Roles” in the page above. Any and all of these are available. As roles get taken I will update the file to remove them. If you want to do more than one please make sure there’s plenty of chapters between the two voices. Thanks!

  2. Nettle says:

    I don’t suppose there are any lines left now that the podcast is caught up, but once a new chapter is released I’d love to get in on it.

  3. Chris says:

    Congrats, Lord Greengrass. You beat me to the finish line, so I look forward to your work. :-)

  4. Austin says:

    Now that we’re well in to 2015, I assumed that there wouldn’t be any parts left… but the “available roles” file still had 3 listed so I went ahead and sent mine in anyway!

  5. Charles Jude Prestia says:

    Now that the new chapters will be coming out, do you have an update on open voice roles?

    Also – thank you so much for taking the initiative to create the podcast. This has created so much value in my life over the past year and it’s unlikely I would have encountered (let alone make it a priority to read) Yudkowsky’s text without prior exposure.

    • Eneasz says:

      I’m very glad to hear that it’s been of use, and people have enjoyed it! :)

      As for roles – no more back-roles will be accepted, so anything in a chapter that’s already come out is closed. However the text version is now ahead of the audio version, and soon will be out in its entirety, and I will accept voice for anyone who has not yet appeared in the podcast. For example, there is a Hufflepuff in chapter 104 who is currently available. I’ll be keeping the Open Roles file fairly current with these up-coming parts for anyone who is interested.

      • Charles Jude Prestia says:

        Thanks Eneasz!

        Do you have a preferred method for sending in samples or for individuals to select characters they’d like to lend their voice to – or has it been more of a spontaneous order approach to all the submission, selection, and logistics for voice actors?

        If my friends and I are current with the latest chapters of the text version, should we just jump on identifying open/likely-open characters and recording samples of how we imagine they’d sound in the context of the story?

        • Eneasz says:

          That is the best way to do it, yes. Generally if someone gets something to me before I can update the Available Roles file, and I can use it, it won’t even get into the file. I’m a sucker for having a usable file ready to go. :)

      • Guest says:

        Honesty time: I love your podcast and HPMOR. I think your readings are fantastic, and I’m glad I got to discover the story through this channel. I just finished your most recent episode, having listened to all of them in <2 weeks.

        I almost didn't become a listener, because some of the audio quality, especially the guest voices in the beginning, was very poor. Do you have any plans to have the original actors re-record their parts? If not, do your long term plans include finding actors with proper recording equipment? I'd hate for anyone like me to get prematurely turned off and miss out on your awesome work.

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