Tag Archives: Audiobook

“American Gods” Voting Is Over…Thanks, Everyone!

Voting for the Neil Gaiman Audio Contest is over! And thanks to you guys, yes, I did indeed land somewhere in the Top 20.

You guys…

(turns away)

(dabs at eyes)

(turns back)

(clears throat)


Now the contest moves on to Stage 2, in which the Panel of Harper-Collins Judges chooses the one they like the most.

And I do think that’s the operative phrase. I think what happens now is that each judge will listen to all 20 and then vote for the one that they flat-out Liked for whatever reason. The nature of the contest gives them a lot of freedom. There’ll be reactions like “That guy sounds like he’s just been in a bar fight. That’s kind of cool.” or “Wow, doesn’t [name of finalist] sound perfect for [unnamed incidental character]?”

Or even: “#6 is dressed in an awesome troll costume in his entry photo, and his audition sounds like a million bucksand he’s dressed in an awesome troll costume. Gentlemen and ladies, why the bloody hell are we looking any further? WE. ARE. USING. THIS. MAN.

But most likely it’ll simply be a gut response. It’s not an award to recognize America’s Next Top Audiobook Narrator. The judges will be making the statement “You have a cool voice. Come and record a part for us, won’t you?”

So I think I’m in there with a chance, along with 19 other Equally-Worthy Humans. Give them a listen. A Neil Gaiman fan with some scripting mojo wrote a neat little gadget that (I think) scraped the site once an hour during the voting period and maintained an updated list of top vote-getters, with links to their audition pieces.

No matter what the outcome, I wanted to be sure to thank everyone who helped me finish in the top twenty! That finish is put a lottery ticket in my pocket for the next few days. The outcome won’t be known until the end of the week, and I know that my chances aren’t great. But until the announcement, hell: I’ve got a nonzero chance of winning something awesome. And that’s a fun thought.

Help me to (maybe) get cast in a Neil Gaiman audiobook!

I gave it a lot of soul-searching thought and after praying on the matter with my pastor and devoting 27 hours to playing “Portal 2″…

(If I’m to be honest, playing “Portal 2” actually had very little to do with the Soul-Searching Thought.)

(It’s the same thing about the deal with my pastor, who’d only turned up at my house because he’d forgotten to pre-order the game and he heard I had it)

…I decided that yes, in fact, I would like to be given a small speaking role in a new tenth-anniversary audiobook edition of Neil Gaiman’s “American Gods,” which is to be performed by a full cast.

And as luck would have it, there was actually a way that I could make that happen: by visiting the HarperCollins site, recording a short audition piece, and then browbeating you, o members of my blog, print, podcast, and Twitter audiences, into voting for me. Here…Neil himself explains the scheme on video:

So, you see, it’s much like “American Idol,” only without any chance whatsoever of hearing J. Lo tearfully tell a 19-year-old karaoke singer that his rendition of “She’s Like The Wind” moved her to reconnect with an estranged cousin. Surely you can support my endeavor on that basis alone.

I’ve already posted my audition file. Go ahead and give it a listen. Everybody has to record the same piece.

After the voting closes on May 2, the audiobook’s producers will listen to the audition files of the top twenty vote getters and choose a winner. As of the 20th (the last time the vote totals were updated) the top 20 auditioners have 300 to 500 votes. I reckon I’ll need a lot more than that by the time this is done.

The good news is that you can cast a vote every day.

The bad news is that you must be a registered user of the HarperCollins site in order to vote. I’m sorry that you’ll have to spend twenty or thirty seconds filling out a short online form but if it’s any consolation, you’re only the first of millions of people whom I’m willing to exploit and then abandon in my remorseless drive towards audiobook superstardom.

(Well, again with the truth: no, of course there will be no superstardom. Still, it sounds like it could be fun, doesn’t it? I sat down and recorded the piece on that basis alone.)

Still not moved?

Okay, well, how about this, then: if I’m in the Top Twenty by the time the dust settles, I will record an hourlong audiobook and release it as a free download under Creative Commons. No kidding. I’ve already selected the text: a spiffy artist memoir in the public domain that I’ve re-read about three times since I discovered it on Google Books.

Excellent. Good. Thanks ever so. Once again, you’ll find my audition right here.

What’s that? Oh! Yes, that’s a brilliant idea: you certainly should submit your own entry. Head to this page for all of the necessary information. I assume your goal is to divert votes from the other 1000-2000 people who’ve uploaded auditions, thus in effect increasing my likelihood of a Top 20 slot? Oh, you’re just the best.