Today I’m sharing my first Behind the Scenes Interview, a series celebrating June is Audiobook Month 2012 (JIAM2012). I chose to share my interview with Tanya Perez from Blackstone Audio for the first post because, as you’ll see, she has so many jobs in the industry!
I have had quite a few interactions with Tanya over the years: asking for assistance on everything from getting copies of books I’ve recorded to where to upload files, plus I follow her on Twitter and read her blog where she writes on many topics audiobook. So I do believe she deserves her requested title…
KW: What is your job title and what are your responsibilities?
TP: Quite seriously, I did ask if I could have “Queen of the Audiobook Universe” put on my business card; but the Graphics Department showed a remarkable lack of a sense of humor. Perhaps they thought I wasn’t serious… Anyway, not really having a job title per se, I came up with “Studio Services,” which is a rather euphemistic term to cover the array of different things that I do for Blackstone Audio, Inc.: Studio Technician, Studio Administrative Support, Liason to Listener Advisory Services, Casting Consultant and every once in a while, a Secret Producer. My work day varies depending on what needs to be done; but I’m in either the studio or a brilliant green box known as my office, from 8:am- 2:00 p.m. PST. At other times, I’m online, working from home or discussing things with Grover Gardner in the “off-hours.” It’s pretty much become a 24/7/365 thing these days!
KW: How did you end up working in the audiobook industry?
(Two titles for which I was a “Secret” (uncredited) Producer”)
TP: I started working the audio book industry as a proofer for Grover Gardner and, a little bit later, as a studio monitor for the narrators who would use the booths set up at his house. My dream job would be either to be a full-out producer (I love, love, love the process!) or, if it couldn’t be in the audio book industry, to be a subsidiary rights agent. I wouldn’t go back to being a proofer now. I actually really like the work; but I’ve developed hyper-acute hearing and the physical and psychological effects are counter-productive to being efficacious in the position.
KW: What do you love most about the work you do?
TP: I love the fact the audiobooks require a synthesis of artistic and technical knowledge, that it requires the use of both halves of my brain. In some ways, I feel like every other job I’ve had has been “prep” for this one: my major in Theater Arts and work in theaters (lights & sound technician, board operator, and designer, as well as my exposure and involvement in the theater communities), a UNIX/pCode programmer (for its requirement to think in logical syntaxes; plus the corporate culture taught me a professional language that’s been invaluable in awkward situations); and even my work as a bookkeeper (which not only helps me understand productions costs and budgets; but makes me fairly adept with spreadsheets.) My work experience both in and out of the audiobook industry, plus my love of reading, makes me feel like I was made for this job. I just wished it paid more J
KW: Do you have a favorite audiobook?
I have a Personal Pantheon of All-Time Great Audiobooks, which currently has ten titles (there are two trilogies, each of which I count as one entry) in it. The list covers a range of genres, audiobook publishers, authors and narrators. The most recent addition was Matterhorn (by Karl Marlantes; narrated by Bronson Pinchot.) I love any book that makes me feel like I’ve experienced the story, actually lived it as opposed to having just been told the story.
KW: Anything else you’d like to share?
dogearedcopy May 11, 11:31am via HootSuite
OK, so @Snacky_Smorez works to my right in the office. Every once in awhile I like to try and break his serious demeanor…
dogearedcopy May 11, 11:32am via HootSuite
So, I’m very tempted to put this up on my computer and check out for the week-end: youtu.be/6GggY4TEYbk @Snacky_Smorez
[It worked – He cracked a smile J]
You can also follow me on twitter (@dogearedcopy) where I usually have something to say about something just about every day – and it’s usually about audiobooks and/or check out my audiobook reviews at dogearedcopy.blogspot.com.
KW: I’m imagining that many of you might have further questions for Tanya – ask away in a comment below and she will do her best to comment back soon! Check back Monday for my next interview, with audiobook editor Becky Nieman.