Audio dramas allow you to create a project without the costs of television production. Imagine War of the Worlds. Dramatic shows were popular when radio was the sole medium to consume content. However, they fell out of favor with the advent of visual media. With the popularity of podcasting, audio dramas make a return.
My first novel, A Day After Disaster, was published in 2014. This became book one of a series titled the Changing Earth Series. Books that are both entertaining and instructive are my favorite books. Concerns over our changing world and the increased dependence on technology to survive were translated into stories. My characters rely on legitimate survival skills to thrive in an age without technology, which is creating ever-new challenges for human survival.
Separately, in my podcast I read an entire chapter and then we discussed how the skills revealed by the story actually work.
My progress was so exciting that I began to pitch the book series in Hollywood. I knew it would be a long and arduous process to get my show made into a series. But I'm not patient. I wanted my imaginary world to come alive. I produced an Audio Drama for my podcast.
First, you need a script
First, you'll need a storyline. Fortunately, I have ten IP novels in the Changing Earth Series. To give my fans fresh content, I expanded on the critical characters. It is a good way to practice your screenwriting. I have seen my abilities grow as a result of the show.
You should be aware that audio dramas are audio-only. You cannot show battles or small details visually. You need to bring these characters to life with sound and descriptions of the characters. During the Changing Earth Audio Drama's first season I used a narrator who helped fill in any gaps. The audiobook was more like a series of television episodes that you listen to than watch. In the second episode, I did away with the narration. In order for the audience to understand what was happening, the characters needed to step in and fill the gap. You can pick the method that best suits your show. I, however, prefer the show with no narrator.
You will need performers
It can be difficult to find performers willing to work as volunteers. I've enlisted the help of all my family members and friends. Some people are more adept at infusing emotions and feelings into the characters. I am also familiar with a large community of podcasters. These are people who use microphones to express themselves. They have been a great help. On Stage 32, you can find other performers. Post your job openings on the Stage 32 job board. I've found some reliable performers who are willing to take part without any promise of payment. Recognising your performance is important.
Coordinating schedules can be a nightmare. I give my performers their scripts, and then they record and send me their files. It's not easy to get everyone on the same recording, but it's easier than trying to get them all together. I only ask that the files be sent to me as MP3s in one voice file. Audacity is my personal recording program of choice. Free software makes this even better. But people are recording on a wide variety of devices, including their mobile phones.
Put it all together
You need to combine the voices of your show now that they have been recorded. You will need audio editing software for this step. Many options are available. Since I don't have a budget to work with, I chose software that is inexpensive and does not charge monthly fees. I use AVS Audio editor.
The vocals should all sound as if they were recorded at the same time. First, normalize all the voices to the same level so they sound as if they were speaking at a similar volume. There are many details about audio editing on YouTube, and I'm not going to go into them now. These tweaks differ slightly between the different audio-editing platforms.
The voices are made to sound as if they were happening in real-time.
If you are using sounds, you must make sure you own the rights or that they are licensed under "Creative Commons." FreeSound.com has a great selection of sounds. You must click the Creative Commons icon (otherwise it is illegal to use this sound in commercial production). Zapsplat.com has a lot of sounds. You can get a gold membership for a low price and you will have access to their entire music and sound library. You can even create your sounds.
You need to use both small and large sounds in order to make your story sound more realistic. You hear footsteps when a character opens and closes the door, then stands up. These details, along with the echoes of birds chirping outside and residual sounds from the house, are equally important. It's simple to learn about sound. Close your eyes. Close your eyes and listen. That's right. You can learn a lot from professionals. You can learn a lot from the pros. Once you begin to notice, it's a lot of fun.
Overdoing things can be dangerous. You can easily overdo it once you've started composing the tapestry. When adding too many sounds, scenes like gunfights can be a problem. The vocals are lost in the background noise. Some sounds are actually able to delete other sounds. Use vocals to adjust your sound, and listen to your final product with headphones.
The music is what makes audio dramas pop. Music was not included in the first audio drama season I produced. The audio drama seemed a little dry. The narrator became less important once I added music. The music sets the mood. You can also use the music to convey a secret message through the song lyrics. Copywrite is a very important thing to know. FreeMusicArchives.com has a good selection of music to choose from. Please make sure that you check the box for Copywrite to allow you to mix the music in commercial projects. As a starving musician, I give credit to every artist. Musicians may produce music in exchange for recognition if they know you.
Publication of Your Work
You can thank your colleagues who are entrepreneurs by allowing them to sell commercials during the show. And believe me, it is hard work. It is difficult to write the scripts; you also have to recruit and organize all of your performers. It is easy to make them finish the lines. I have a lot of experience producing audio dramas. However, it still takes me two hours per minute to edit the audio. It's not simple, but you can bring your story alive without spending a fortune or signing a Hollywood deal.
Once you have created an amazing show, upload it to the podcasting site of your choice and you are done! You have just created your audio drama.