Voice-over ad-lib cheat sheet – 20 transitions for a smoother read

When it comes to voice acting, the script is everything. It’s the foundation upon which the performance is built. But what happens when the script is poorly written? The lines may not flow smoothly, the pacing may be off, and the story may not be clear. In these cases, it’s important for the voice actor to have a few ad-libs up their sleeve to help smooth out the rough edges and keep the performance on track.

One of the most important things to remember when dealing with a poorly written script is to stay calm. It’s easy to get frustrated or flustered when the words on the page don’t make sense, but getting upset will only make the situation worse. Instead, take a deep breath and remind yourself that you’re the professional and you can handle this.

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One way to fix a poorly written script is by adding emphasis. Sometimes the script may not make it clear which parts of the dialogue are important, but by emphasizing certain words or phrases, you can help the listener understand the significance of what’s being said. This can be done by using inflection, pausing, or using a slightly different tone of voice.

Another way to improve a piece of copy is by adding emotion. A script may not convey the emotion that the writer intended, but as a voice actor, it’s your job to add it in. This can be done by using a different tone of voice, altering the pace of your delivery, or even adding a sound effect. For example, if a character is supposed to be angry but the script doesn’t show it, you can raise the pitch of your voice or speak more quickly to convey anger.

Another thing you can do is slow down or speed up the pacing. Sometimes the script may be too fast-paced or slow-paced, and by adjusting the pacing, you can help the listener understand what’s happening. For example, if a script is too fast-paced, you can slow down your delivery to give the listener time to process the information. Conversely, if a script is too slow-paced, you can speed up your delivery to keep the listener engaged.

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In addition to these techniques, it’s also important to remember that it’s okay to ask for clarification. If the script doesn’t make sense, don’t be afraid to ask the director or writer for more information. They may be able to provide more context or explain what they were trying to convey.

Lastly, it’s important to have a list of ad-libs ready to use in case of a poorly written script. Ad-libs are useful for transitioning between paragraphs, providing additional information, or clarifying the scene. Here are 20 ad-libs to help you navigate a poorly written script:

  1. “Now moving on to the next point…”
  2. “Let’s shift gears and talk about…”
  3. “Another aspect to consider is…”
  4. “Building on that thought,…”
  5. “Going back to the subject at hand…”
  6. “Let me elaborate on that point…”
  7. “Switching gears,…”
  8. “Let’s delve deeper into the topic of…”
  9. “Expanding on the previous idea…”
  10. “Another important factor to consider is…”
  11. “Going off on a tangent for a moment…”
  12. “Let’s take a step back and look at…”
  13. “Moving forward,…”
  14. “Let’s return to the main topic of…”
  15. “Taking a different approach,…”
  16. “To continue,…”
  17. “Getting back to the original point…”
  18. “As I was saying earlier…”
  19. “To sum up,…”
  20. “In conclusion,…”
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A poorly written script can be a challenge for any voice actor, but with a few techniques and ad-libs in your toolbox, you can navigate these challenges and deliver a strong performance. Remember to stay calm, add emphasis, emotion, and adjust the pacing when necessary. It’s also important to ask for clarification if the script doesn’t make sense, and to have a list of ad-libs ready to use for transitioning between paragraphs or providing additional information. With these techniques and ad-libs, you’ll be able to handle any poorly written script and deliver a great performance.

Look out for yourself! 🖐😌

5 character voices that every Dungeons & Dragons dungeon master should have in their toolbox

Dungeons & Dragons (D&D) is a role-playing game that allows players to take on the roles of different characters and embark on epic adventures. As a dungeon master (DM), it is important to have a variety of character voices in your repertoire to bring your NPCs (non-player characters) to life and create a more immersive experience for your players. In this article, we will go over 5 common character voices (including lines to practise with) that every DM should consider adding to their sessions.

The Sturdy Dwarf:

This character is a tough and dependable dwarf, who is known for their strength and courage. They often speak in a gruff and straightforward manner, and they are not afraid to speak their mind.

Example lines:
“I’ll bash in the skulls of any foe that stands in our way.”
“I’ve been in tougher scrapes than this. Let’s get to it.”
“I’ll take the lead, follow me if you want to make it out alive.”

The Pompous Wizard:

This character is a powerful and arrogant wizard, who is often full of themselves. They speak in a grandiose and haughty tone, and they often use big words and complex language.

Example lines:
“I am the master of the arcane arts, you plebeians could never understand the complexities of my spellcasting.”
“I tire of this mortal’s antics, I shall end this now with a wave of my hand.”
“You would be wise to listen to me, for I possess knowledge and power beyond your wildest imaginings.”

The Shifty Rogue:

This character is a sneaky and untrustworthy rogue, who often has a hidden agenda. They speak in a sly and cunning manner, and they often use sarcasm and irony.

Example lines:
“I’ve got a plan, but it’s not one you’ll like.”
“You can trust me, I’m a professional liar.”
“I always have a trick up my sleeve, just in case things go south.”

The Ancient Dragon:

This character is a wise and powerful dragon, who has lived for centuries. They speak in a slow and measured tone, and they often use metaphors and riddles to convey their messages.

Example lines:
“I have lived for an eon, seen civilizations rise and fall. You are but a mere mortal, a fleeting thought in the grand scheme of things.”
“The treasure you seek is not gold, but wisdom. It is the hoarded knowledge of my kind, guarded for ages.”
“The fire of youth burns brightly, but it is the embers of age that truly light the way.”

The Devout Priest:

This character is a devout and pious priest, who is dedicated to their faith. They speak in a calm and reassuring tone, and they often use religious language and references.

Example lines:
“The gods will guide us, all we need to do is have faith.”
“May the blessings of the divine protect us on this journey.”
“Through prayer and devotion, all obstacles can be overcome.”

Overall, being able to bring out a variety of character voices during your sessions is a useful skill for any dungeon master. By using different voices and styles, you can bring your NPCs to life and create a more immersive experience for your players.

Next time, we will discuss another 5 (less obvious) choices for character voices DMs can add to their toolbox. Remember, practice makes perfect and the more you use these voices, the more comfortable and natural they will feel. Happy adventuring!