Wired Love by Ella Cheever Thayer
What brought you to working on this project?
I had been a part time audiobook narrator before Covid, but then got laid off from my safety net jobs and suddenly had a lot of free time. I wanted to learn audiobook production from the rights holder side and I had recently read this story, which sounded like a fun, old-timey version of “You’ve Got Mail”. I love rom-coms and this was perfect!
What was the hardest part of bringing this story to life?
There is a lot of archaic language and old spellings that I had to almost translate. Also, many old authors, and this one in particular, used a lot of very long sentences, and seemed to under punctuate. I had to go through the script and add a lot of extra commas, and even parentheses in order to remind myself of the inflection that the author intended.
Do you have a favorite character voice from the project? Why/ why not?
Oh my gosh, there were three that I absolutely loved! Two of them because of their quirkiness, and one, named “Cyn”, who was the kind of best friend character, who was just really cool and optimistic. I wanted her to be MY best friend!
Do you have a favorite chapter from the project? Why/ why not?
Yes! I can’t remember whether it was “The Feast” or “Unexpected Visitors”, as they almost could have been one big chapter, and I don’t want to give too much away, but it was such a fun and quirky scene where you really get to know the characters’ unique personalities.
Is there anything you’d like listeners to know about this work before they hear your performance?
The book was a best seller for 10 years and was the only novel by Ella Cheever Thayer.
Me: Cool. Thanks for sharing that.
About your other works:
What was the most challenging other work you’ve voiced? Easiest? Most fun? What made it hard, easy, fun??
I would say this (Wired Love) was the most challenging, for the reasons I said before. The most fun (other than this one) was probably another classic novel I did recently called “Patty Went to College” by Jean Webster. It is almost more like a series of vignettes than a single story, which meant I got a lot of closure all the way through, and I really loved playing the main character who kept getting herself into trouble. The characters were so well developed that I could clearly see and hear them in my mind.
What do you love about what you do?
I love getting to play all of the characters in a story. When I do theater, I am limited to just one (or a small handful if it is improv). I get to play characters of all different ages and genders, and I am responsible for telling the whole story, rather than just part of it which makes it so much more fulfilling than stage work.
Which work are you most proud to have been a part of? Why?
Whichever is my newest release is always what I am the most proud of. It is great to be able to say I contributed to a piece of art that is accessible to so many people, not just a couple hundred people in a theater.
Me: So, that was all about your work. Now, tell us more about Rebecca the person.
What drew you to voice acting?
I think it started when my family would play around with a tape recorder when I was a kid and do pretend radio shows and commercials. I always loved performing, and majored in Drama and Music in college. It was probably inevitable that I would eventually end up back in front of the “tape recorder”.
Me: What’s a tape recorder? (Kidding! They were around when I was a kid.)
Is this the only acting you do? If you do other forms of acting, which is your favorite and why?
I still do improv, even online improv currently during lockdown. I love to be able to play a wide range of characters, and comedy has always been my favorite genre of art. It also scratches a writing itch that I have, since you are simultaneously writing and acting. Other than that, I love performing musical theater, but it takes a huge commitment, and a LOT of memorization, which, to be honest, I am less enthusiastic about since having improv and audiobooks to fulfill me.
Me: That does sound like a lot of work.
Do you have a process when you approach a work? Please describe it for us.
I always skim the entire book before accepting a project. Once we decide to go forward with it, I read it and highlight the dialogue in different colors for each character, underline and look up words I don’t know how to pronounce, and make bold any words I think need a bit more emphasis. I never italicise because I don’t want to confuse them with words that the author actually italicized. Same with punctuation. I may add an extra space or two in long sentences so that I know I should take a breath, but I never add extra commas.
I usually don’t plan ahead with character “voices” but I let my improv instincts do the work. I record the first line of dialogue of each character into my phone so that if they disappear for a few chapters, I can quickly refer to it to remind myself if they come back.
Me: That’s super interesting. Most narrators I know are like “I have 8 pages of notes on this character.” (At least in spirit, even if they haven’t told me that to my face.)
What’s one random thing people don’t really know about you?
I have had a lot of different jobs in entertainment, and people I meet always comment on that. I think they may believe that I change my mind about what I want to do with my life or something, but to me, everything is the next progression of my journey of storytelling. I developed a lot of acting skills from working as a theme park character performer. I learned public speaking and got to know people from all around the world while working as an emcee on cruise ships. I use all of the skills and experiences when I narrate audiobooks. One day, I might even write my own books, but for now, I find this work extremely fulfilling.
Do you get to read for fun? Do you have a favorite genre to read for fun?
I listen to audiobooks for fun. Mostly cozy mysteries, rom-coms, and non-fiction, but honestly, any genre as long as it is well written.
Me: You should get on the Audiobooks Edge Reader’s list. I’ve gotten a lot of cozies of ate.
Do you have other hobbies? What do you do to relax?
I love hiking (in the woods). I tried hiking in the desert when I lived in LA and I was not a fan! To relax, I do yoga, and spend time with my husband-figure and my pets.
What kind of movies do you enjoy?
Comedies, currently I’m on a Taika Waitiii kick.
If you could meet one person from history or present time, who would it be and why?
Robin Williams. He was such a unique individual and a comedy legend. Also, I used to have dreams that he was my uncle for some reason.
How can readers and prospective clients reach you?
Social Media Links:
Audiobook Promotions …
Many of my 42 audible titles are listed on Audiobooks Unleashed.
Whether you’re looking for mystery or suspense or fantasy, I’ve got a title for you. Free codes are probably on audiobooks unleashed.
Normal links go to audible. *The Amazon labeled links are affiliate links. That means I get a very small payment from Amazon if you go through with a purchase.*
Note: Filter by US if you’re looking for those codes as many titles are out.
Ones I think may still have US codes: Innova, The Golden City Captives, Treachery Makes it Tense, Ashlynn’s Dreams Shorts, The Dark Side of Science
There are plenty of UK codes, but not many US ones left.
Redeemer Chronicles (Fantasy)
Awakening – Redeemer Chronicles Book 1, MG fantasy (Amazon) (free codes)
The Holy War – Redeemer Chronicles Book 2, MG fantasy (Amazon) (free codes)
Reclaim the Darklands – Redeemer Chronicles Book 3, MG fantasy (Amazon) (free codes)
River’s Edge Ransom – Prequel to Redeemer Chronicles (Amazon) (email devyaschildren @ gmail.com for free codes)
Devya’s Children Series Links:
Ashlynn’s Dreams Shorts – short stories featuring Jillian. (Amazon) (free codes)
The Dark Side of Science – official prequel to Devya’s Children; Genetically altered kids fight for the right to live. (Amazon) (Please email devyaschildren @ gmail.com for free codes)
Ashlynn’s Dreams – Genetically altered Dream Shaper learns her gift. (Amazon) (free codes)
Nadia’s Tears – Jillian tries to awaken her sister, Nadia, from a coma. (Amazon) (free codes)
Malia’s Miracles – Jillian and her siblings try to save a friend’s mother. (Amazon) (free codes)
Varick’s Quest – Jillian and Danielle get kidnapped. Nadia’s also in trouble. (Amazon) (free codes)
Reshner’s Royal Ranger (epic sci-fi) just made it there. (Amazon) (free codes)
Guardian Angel Files:
Spirit’s Bane – Allister and Mina are training to be Guardians. Satan’s out to get them. (Amazon) (free codes)
Kindred Spirits – Mina’s exiled to Earth. Allister’s stuck in the Heavens. (Amazon) (free codes)