My Economy

After losing her job, this woman turned to at-home voiceover work

Sean McHenry Aug 24, 2021
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An interior of Carol Wrobleski's home studio. "I had a lot of people come in, drill nails in my walls and set up all kinds of foam," Wroblesk said. "The hard part is getting a studio space that has the sound quality that you need." Photo courtesy of Carol Wrobleski
My Economy

After losing her job, this woman turned to at-home voiceover work

Sean McHenry Aug 24, 2021
Heard on:
An interior of Carol Wrobleski's home studio. "I had a lot of people come in, drill nails in my walls and set up all kinds of foam," Wroblesk said. "The hard part is getting a studio space that has the sound quality that you need." Photo courtesy of Carol Wrobleski
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After getting laid off from her job as an administrative assistant last fall, Carol Wrobleski decided to turn her closet into a voiceover booth. She hoped to audition for audiobooks and ended up spending $4,000 on coaching and equipment. But when another full time opportunity came up, she decided to put her voiceover career on hold. The following is her story.

Last fall, I was laid off from a job I’d had for about a year, and I went on unemployment right away. I have to say, I was really worried because I’m not a young woman anymore. I’m an older woman. And I felt that my job prospects might be pretty limited. I thought, “Well, what could I do from home that would make sense?” And I had done some on-air radio work. I’ve done a few film narrations, and I thought, “Well, what the heck, I’ll try voiceover. I’ll just see how it goes.”

And so I bought a ton of equipment. I invested in some workshops and some coaching. Right now, I’m sitting in a closet that has a lot of acoustical blankets hung up. I had a lot of people come in, drill nails in my walls and set up all kinds of foam and stuff like that. The hard part is getting a studio space that has the sound quality that you need, especially for things like audiobooks, They’re very particular, and that was sort of my goal when I started this. I sent in two or three, I think, audition tapes. Didn’t get the job but they say, you know, it’s a numbers game. You just need to submit a lot of auditions.

And then this job at Smith College opened up. I applied for it and I thought, “Do I really want a full-time job?” I wanted to be able to keep doing what I was doing, but, you know, the practicalities of life are such that I’m a single woman. I have two kids in their 20s. I need the health insurance, and it was just the right move to take the job.

Crafting an audiobook is something very new and it takes a lot of nuance and time, so I felt like, “OK, I’m not really ready to take that challenge on yet.” But when I really add it all up, it was more than I really wanted it to be. It was about $4,000, but that’s another reason why I thought, “OK, if I don’t do this, I’ve basically thrown $4,000 away and that hurts.” Now that I’m back in the studio. It just feels really fun to be here and and I have some work to do to get my audio in better condition, but my hope will be in mid-September to give it a try again.

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