Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Success Stories From The 10-Week VO Holiday Challenge

Approximately ten weeks ago,  I created a promotion that centered around giving back to the community. The 10-Day VO Holiday Challenge. I challenged voice talents by giving them ten weeks to contact a charity of their choice, donate their service and then write about it on our official facebook page.  The mission was to use our voices to make a difference in our communities.  Here are a few of the success stories;

Lisa Biggs and seven other voice talents are in the process of recording “Patches and Friends”.  This is a video to help children how to understand and express their feelings when they are in need of help.  It’s a 5 month campaign supporting Child Abuse Awareness & Prevention.

Penny Abshire recorded some projects for Shriners Hospital!  This is especially close to Penny’s heart since it's the Shriners who have taken such wonderful care of her granddaughter, Danara. She was born with a birth defect and was in need of a prosthetic leg.  Now, she receives a new leg from Shriners Hospital whenever she needs it - completely free of charge - until she's 18.  It's an amazing organization!

Andrew Coffman recently signed up to volunteer for Learning Ally (formerly Recording for the Blind & Dyslexic) A great organization doing some very incredible things.

Jennifer Knight contributed her voice (a song) to this awesome project.

Ralph Hass recorded the voice of an angel for Willow Park Church.  This was part of the 20th Annual Living Nativity.

Wendy Edwards, Justin Barrett and Les Sinclair contributed their voices to the Lennon Project. 

Timo DeRumm donated a voiceover- to benefit those suffering from neurological injuries.  The Neurological Foundation of New Zealand.

Derek Chappel provided a voiceover addressing youth and alcohol issues.

Dan Harder recorded five scripts for the American Lung Association. 

EJ Holly is voicing some complimentary spots for Melanie's "Pink" campaign, National Kidney Foundation for Missy, and for Tammy's non profit.  

Dave Courvoisier read a chapter from Reader's Digest for AIRS/LA and raised money for the foster children of Clark County in this season.

Ken Knuckles did a live announcer gig for Big Brothers/Big Sisters of Middle Tennessee.  Over the years, he has lent his voice to other BBBS fund raising efforts.

Karen Commins rewrote two scripts and recorded the narrations for the orientation videos used by the Dive Immersion Program at the Georgia Aquarium.

Nancy Raciti was able to record a holiday greeting for Learning Ally (formerly Recording for the Blind & Dyslexic) to distribute to its members, volunteers, partners and friends.

Melanie Haynes was honored and happy to volunteer her services by narrating the United Way, Carthage Mo. 2011 campaign.

Stephanie Robinson was able to record 4 PSAs for the National Eating Disorders Association for their upcoming Awareness Week campaign February 26th - March 3rd 2012, "Everybody Knows Somebody." This charity is very close to her heart.

Darren Marlar recorded and sent some "Power Charge Promos" free of charge to a not-for-profit radio station in the Dallas area.

Cat Smith recorded two PSA’s.  One is for the Butterfly Fund, a charity that raises money for families of children with a catastrophic illness or event. The other is for Face to Face, the Sonoma County Aids Network.

As for me?  I am in the process of working with the Dystonia Medical Research Foundation on a couple of different projects.  Dystonia is a movement disorder that causes the muscles to contract and spasm involuntarily.

I can’t thank these voice talents enough for taking time out of their busy holiday schedules to contribute to such a wonderful promotion.  We will do it again next year.  Happy New Year to you and your families.

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

'Tis The Season To Take Care Of Your Voice

The holidays are a time of celebration and cheer, filled with laughter and joy and goodwill to all.  Of course, no season of celebration is complete without an endless array of parties with tasty delights of food and an ample selection of beverages to toast friends and family.  One cannot help but partake of at least of few of these moments amid the chaotic scramble of balancing workload to meet deadlines and auditioning for future work.

This is also a fantastic time of the year to trash your voice!   I know ... I sound like the Grinch, but unlike the Grinch, I do have heart and I want you to succeed.  As a voiceover talent, teacher, coach or public speaker, you need to be aware of how to care for your voice and still partake in the celebrations of the season and throughout the year.

Here are some tips to help keep your voice in tip top shape:

1. Drink lots of water to keep hydrated and to keep your vocal chords moist as winter weather tends to be very dry.

2. Enjoying sugary sweets, greasy appetizers, dairy and caffeine is fine in moderation, but keep in mind what they do to your voice. Whenever possible, balance your plate with fresh fruits, vegetables, lean proteins, and complex carbohydrates.

3. Having a few alcoholic beverages at a party may also be fine; however, resist the urge to overindulge, especially if you will be recording in the morning, as alcohol will dry out your vocal chords and the sugar in it will produce excess mucus.  

4. Carbonated beverages also have a drying effect.  Drinking extra water when consuming alcohol or any carbonated beverages will help keep you hydrated, and adding fresh lemon will help to cut mucus.

5. Cover your neck with a scarf when you go outside and, when it's super cold, try to breathe through your nose instead of your mouth.  It may sound crazy but it helps to protect your voice.

6. Remember this is cold and flu season too.  People come from far and near to meet family and friends for the holidays, and each brings a different set of germs, so remember to wash your hands thoroughly and frequently.

7. Finally, social gatherings tend to be loud making it very easy to strain your voice to be heard in conversations.  The only way to repair excess strain is to get plenty of sleep and rest your voice.

Wishing you all the best this holiday season ... Cheers!

Friday, December 16, 2011

Christmas and Moon Boots

I remember the chill that would go through my bones.  That feeling of anticipation on Christmas Eve, just before my mother had placed all of the presents under the tree.  My brother and I used to make a list of things to do on Christmas Eve so the time would move along a lot faster.  It was the silliest thing ever.  10am: play pong, Noon: play street hockey, 2pm: listen to records.  To this day, I am not really sure if this goofy list made the time move faster but we gave it our best shot!

The tradition in our family was to go and look for Santa Claus on Christmas Eve while my mother got all the presents ready.  We would drive all over Champlin, Minnesota which back in the 70's, took all of ten minutes.  When the outside house lights were on, that was the official signal my mother was ready.  If they were off, she needed more time and we would drive away again.  My Dad would have the Christmas music cranked in the Van and we would all sing along.  It was like a scene out of "Christmas Vacation" with Chevy Chase.  The anticipation was killing us.

Finally, the moment had arrived.  When we drove by our house and the lights were on, my heart started to pound.  Nothing was more important than getting into that house as fast as humanly possible!  During the cold Decembers of the past, we had layers of clothing on.  I remember it taking way too long to get my darn moon boots off!  Yes, moon boots!  I remember kicking them off and watching them sail through the air.  Moon boots could fly at the speed of light if you kicked them off with a purpose.  Gloves, hats and coats everywhere.

We all made a break for the living room as if Santa himself, was still there!  Ah, there it was in all its glory. That giant Tinkertoy set, the Sesame Street set with action figures, the Toss-Across game, Mr. Microphone, the Panasonic Boombox and more!  The beaming smiles on our faces were priceless!  I couldn't get those batteries in that microphone fast enough.  I HAD to hear myself on the radio!

For so many years, my parents gave us such a memorable Christmas.  They were never rich and there was no law stating they had to do this for us.  They loved us and did whatever they had to do to make sure their children had a memorable Christmas.  I will never forget it.  And of course, having my late Grandmother there for all of the madness, made it such a special occasion.

Cheers to our parents for all they have done for us over the years.  It is more than just presents on Christmas Eve.  It's about creating memories of unforgettable joy.  Love you, Mom and Dad!  Miss you Nana!  

Merry Christmas to all of you!   

Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas by Ella Fitzgerald on Grooveshark

Wednesday, December 7, 2011


I spent last weekend in NYC.  It was one of the best trips out there yet!  So full of excitement and emotion.  I had the chance to see several voiceover friends that I haven't seen for a long time at the New York Voice Over Mixer.  The party was at the Arena Event Center in Times Square and the accommodations were perfect.  Erik and Lindsay Sheppard did a great job putting this event together!  It was great catching up with Liz De Nesnera, Dave Courvoisier, Trish Basanyi, John Florian, Erik Sheppard and many more!  Tracy accompanied me to the event and not only did she look stunning, she fit in beautifully.  These kinds of gatherings are so unpredictable.  It's like bringing a date to a high school reunion.  You just never know if they are going to fit in or be bored out of their minds.  By the end of the night, Tracy fit in so well, people assumed she was a voice talent!

The rest of the trip was fun, intense and emotional.  We had a chance to visit the new 9/11 Memorial and it was absolutely breathtaking!  I was there only a few months after the tragedy and it was incredible seeing the progress of the new buildings.  The second you step on to the property, you can still feel it.  I got chills immediately.  It was a beautiful Sunday afternoon as we stood there looking at the names of all of the people who lost their lives.  I have a huge lump in my throat as I write this.  It's hard not to imagine them looking down from heaven, seeing their name and smiling.  A truly remarkable day!

I have to admit that when I am in NYC, it always feels like I have been there 200 times.  For as busy as it is, I feel I belong there.  I feel like popcorn popping around in a popcorn maker and then when I get back to Minneapolis, I feel like melted butter.  This isn't as sad as it sounds.  I just feel like I am at my best when I am out there and it takes me a few days to get back into the swing of things when I return.  I think that is the case with most of us after a vacation.  The best part about visiting cities like NYC, is that they really inspire you to do the best you can do.  For me, I always feel closer to the skies when I am there.
Rise by Eddie Vedder on Grooveshark

Monday, November 21, 2011


It's that time of the year again!  Since 2011 is coming to an end very soon, I thought I would list my top eleven things I am thankful for.  I have them listed in numerical order but it's not a ranking system.  I am just listing them as I go.

1. Parents:  My mother had a stroke on the eve of Thanksgiving a few years back and I am grateful she is still around and delivering her smile upon us every day.  As a teacher, my father has been an inspiration.  My writing and speaking skills are a reflection of what I learned from him.  They both put up with a lot of shenanigans, especially during my high school years.  

2. Tracy: The love of my life.  She has helped me so much.  In personal growth as well as my business.  She has a way of lifting a person up when they get down or are having a bad day.  Waking up next to her every morning is like waking up and finding a gift at your bedside. 

3. Working from home:  There is nothing like heading downstairs to the studio in your flannel pajama pants and your hair standing straight up.

4. My voice:  I have been blessed with a good speaking and singing voice.  I am very grateful for these abilities and I continue to work hard on these skills every day.

5. Coffee:  I don't think I could live without it!  Coffee with cream is awful for your voice but I have to admit, I cheat a little.  There's nothing better than waking up to a beautiful sunrise or a lovely snowfall and sippin' on that first cup of coffee!

6. Facebook:  Without it, I wouldn't have at least a dozen of my clients and I wouldn't be with Tracy.  Tracy and I had gone to high school together and we reconnected on facebook!

7. Burt's Bees Beeswax Lip Balm:  Next to electricity, this might be the greatest invention of all time!  I'm not sure if I could survive without my Burt's Bees Beeswax Lip Balm!  For those of you who still use Chapstick, you are allowing the best things in life to pass you by!  

8. Neumann TLM-103:  One of my best friends in the world is my studio microphone!  We were made for each other.  It has been responsible for a multitude of voiceover projects and I will take it to my grave!

9. Family:  I am grateful for my family and Tracy's family.  They make living life such a joy on a daily basis.  We don't always agree on everything but that is what makes it fun and keeps life interesting.

10. Friends: I am honored to have so many friends not only in the voice-over industry but close friends who I have known for quite a few years now.  They were there for me when I went through my divorce, when my mother had a stroke and on days where I am feeling a little down.  As a die hard Minnesota sports fan, you need good friends to help you cope with the disappointment!  Lol! 

11. Pets:  My dog Kaytee has been a staple in this house since 2003 and with the addition of Tracy's cat, Huckleberry, they are about as entertaining as a good sitcom!  A couple of true characters that entertain us on a daily basis. 

It's always tough to come up with just ten or eleven!  Feel free to comment with your own lists.  I would love to read some of yours as well.

Happy Thanksgiving!

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Bouncing Higher

Like it or not, we are living in the era of craigslist.  Someone will mow your lawn for $20.  A photographer will shoot your wedding for $100 and so-called voice talents will record a 10-page narration for $50!  This is the world we are living in.  Every profession deals with low-ball inquiries from clients.  You don’t have to like it but there are some things you can do about it.  I used to get upset when clients would call me up for a quote and then come back to me, telling me they found someone else that can do it for less.  Now, I just ask them a few questions.

1. How important is your business to you?

2. What is your marketing objective with this script?

3. How important is it that you have professional audio quality?

4. Is this person who can do it for less a professional voice talent?

5. Can I provide a sample for you first and then you can decide?

6. What is holding you back from wanting to pay my requested rate?

7. If I throw in a free voicemail message for your business, will you hire me for this rate?

8. Would you like to hear some samples of work that I've done that are similar to your content?

9. Did you know that 50% of the rate I am asking for is allocated toward my studio expenses? 

10.  Do you have Toto's first album?  (I always throw that in for fun!)

While cost is a factor in any business decision, it should not be the number one objective when hiring voice over talent.  Take car shopping for example.  Do you look for the lowest price tag or the car that will best fit your needs?  The same holds true with a well-versed and seasoned voice talent.

No matter how hard you try, many will still take the less expensive route only to be dissatisfied with the quality of the talent and eventually hire a more experienced talent to record the voice over.  In my career, I have had several of these clients come back to me after originally going elsewhere for a cheaper rate.

Thankfully, there are a lot of wonderful clients out there who understand that in order to move product, they will need to hire a professional and pay them what they deserve. When clients hire so-called VO talents for $20, it shows you what they think of their own business. The cost should not be a factor as the end product will result in exactly what you are looking for.

Monday, October 31, 2011

Happy Halloween!

Halloween is a great time to be a voiceover artist because you can record stuff like this!  When it comes to this particular holiday, I will always be a kid!

Halloween Fun! by voiceoversbyterrydaniel

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

The 10-Week VO Holiday Challenge

With the spirit of giving upon us, I have decided to create a promotion that centers around giving back to the community.  The 10-Day VO Holiday Challenge.  I'm challenging voice talents by giving them ten weeks to contact a charity of their choice, donate their service and then blog about it.

It can be a voicemail, commercial, podcast intro or whatever.  Talents will be able to post links to their blogs as well as the vo's they have recorded for the charity of their choice.

The official facebook page

Thursday, October 13, 2011

I Think I Can...I Knew I Could!

There are thousands of motivational and inspiring books out there.  Some are packed with great content.  Others are filled with watered down fluff adapted from other books.  When I am having a tough day, sometimes I look to simple themes and stories to help motivate me.  Like "The Little Engine That Could", a popular children's book.  The message is so simple yet clear and very effective.

Recording voice-overs and teaching the craft of voice acting is a very exciting way to make a living but there are going to be days where it feels like a struggle.  It can be a difficult client or equipment failure.  Maybe it's Terry Daniel who is being difficult!  Why am I talking in the third person?  Ha!

Anyone who is human will encounter days where nothing seems to be working and you just don't feel like yourself.  There are things we can do to help get us back on a positive path.  Some do yoga.  Some use mediation.  Me?  I enjoy reverting back to this children's classic!  Especially when the little engine goes, "I knew I could!"  It always seems to effectively change my mindset and that is a wonderful accomplishment!

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Voice Over Session- SMP Announcements

Recorded some new announcements for Stone Mountain Park!  Listen to the variety in the takes.  Clients loves this because they can pick and choose. 

Thursday, September 29, 2011

King of the Barrelhouse Piano

It had been over 20 years since I last heard his music but thanks to technology, I was able to transfer tracks from Uncle's album to my computer.

A modern day honky tonk pianist who had continued the tradition of lively improvisation and driving rhythms in his music travels.  Incorporating extreme speed into his unique style, he channeled his power into a percussive style of piano that hearkens back to the honky tonk roots of African drumming and thimble thumped minstrel banjos.

Terry Powell died in October of 1992 of Leukemia but his music will always live on.  I’ve always known where my musical tastes of classical jazz and bluegrass came from.  I remember seeing him live and not being able to sit still all the way to the last number.

He left this earth too quickly at the age of 58 but I am happy to share some of his music with you today.  

To hear a sample, click on the audio player below.  Thank you for taking the time to listen.

Terry's Theme by voiceoversbyterrydaniel

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Dammit Facebook!

Here we go again with more facebook changes.  In a nutshell, who cares.  Is it really going to affect your life in any way?  Did the changes make your teeth fall out?  I find it amusing how many people are going absolutely postal over the new look.  Some folks are acting as if someone broke into their house and rearranged the furniture.  I've seen everything from "I hate facebook" to "I'm leaving for Google+!"  What's next?  "Crucify Zuckerberg?"

Yeah, I like to poke a little fun at facebook for all the changes but protests and threats?  Do you really think facebook is going to reverse the changes because you threatened to drop your account?  I have to laugh at how powerful we think we've become on social networking sites.  It's too easy to get sucked in like a good video game or movie.  Some folks threaten to "unfriend" people as if they were hereby appointed "Facebook Pharoh" by the people.  Facebook is a FREE social networking site.  They don't owe us anything.

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Who Cares How Many People Are Doing It!

Whether you are interested in getting into voiceovers or any other creative field, sometimes you just have to follow your dream despite how much competition is out there!  

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Life Is Too Short

Life is too short to let the economy or any other excuse stop you from achieving your goals. The reality is that the economy is going to continue to move through its cycles and plenty of challenges will present themselves in an effort to distract you along the way of reaching your goals. What you need is a game plan and a strategy for dealing with the challenges.  If you look at successful people you admire, they are not successful because they never had a plan or encountered a challenge, they are successful because they created a plan and kept their eyes on their goals and not on the obstacles.

This is not to diminish the challenges you may be facing. I am saying this to encourage you. You are not the only one who has obstacles and the obstacles are not larger than your potential to overcome them. It may not be easy, but it will be well worth it. 

First and foremost, mind your business. Decide exactly what you want to achieve. Then make a game plane to work through the obstacles. Tougher economic times may require some creativity and making smart, calculated financial choices. It may require you to increase your networking and perhaps think of additional ways to serve your clients and increase your value potential. You may choose to work on your skills and get some additional training or seek mentorship from other professionals who are doing what you would like to do at the level you aspire to achieve. 

Then, isolate yourself from unnecessary distractions. Your time is valuable and you must choose how you leverage it. The time you allocate to social media, advertising and networking must be purposeful and deliberate. You may need to increase the time you spend doing auditions or you may need to choose your auditions more carefully.  Be sure to allocate time to yourself and your family too, as tougher times - regardless of the stressors - often distract us from what really matters in the end.

You can choose to make excuses or you can choose to make your voice over business flourish. The decision is yours.

Cheers to your success!

Sunday, September 4, 2011

A Change of Seasons

The older you get, the years seem to go by so much quicker.  2011 has been growing experience for me.  Tracy and I made it through our first year together and have learned so much from each other!  I am also working on things that could make my voice-over business even better.  It is such a work in progress.  Just like life.  Every day there is something we can improve on.

For me, it's being more patient, listening better and being an overall better person.  At times, I have had a hard time focusing on one task at a time.  It always felt like I needed to get 100 things done within the span of about ten minutes.  I'm learning to "stop and smell the flowers" a lot more than I used to.

Life is precious and as I get older, I am seeing more of its beauty.  I think this happens when you have made peace with yourself.  Having a supportive girlfriend has really helped.  Tracy has not only been an inspiration to me but she is always there for me.  When you are an entrepreneur working from home, there are going to be some challenging days but with her help, the rough days are far more manageable than when I was by myself.

The sunset in the picture above reminds me of everyday life.  Moments of beauty and darkness,  Somehow, we need to walk through both. 

Wednesday, August 31, 2011


Out of bad comes good, rewiring, evaluating of self & wisdom

This week I watched the documentary on the Discovery channel about the rebuilding of Ground Zero in NY.

So emotional, so inspirational, so sad & happy at the same time.  The building of the first new tower is emotional for me to watch.  After all these years of so much pain and an empty hole, it is nice to see that there is finally restoration taking place.  In a way, it’s like spending years not knowing what you are going to do with your life and then out of nowhere, things start taking shape.  One brick at a time.  We are always rebuilding.  Whether its highways, buildings or our inner soul.  I think of my voiceover career this way.  Like I’m building a tall skyscraper, one floor at a time.  Each floor has a goal.  An objective.     

Resilience- In the voiceover business, it’s easy to get down on yourself when you are having a bad day, week, month or even year!  Focus on what has worked in the past but don’t be afraid to try new things.  Success will come back to you like a boomerang.  Some weeks are great, some weeks are tough.  It’s like a musician who makes it to the top of the charts and then has to work twice has hard to back there again. 

It seems every day there is this fine line between good & bad.  There will always be people trying to take us down, intentionally or not. Spreading negativity, trying to break down what we are trying to build.  It can be challenging because now we have social networking sites, where people can either choose to be supportive and positive or cynical and discouraging.  The beauty is that we can decide who we are going to be connected with.  This is the same in the real world.

So remember it is always your choice. Your choice who you are connected with, your choice to not be afraid, your choice to wake up every day & decide what brick you will add to your tower of life.

Build the life you dream of.....

 *Special thanks to Tracy Blowers for contributing to this blog.

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Out of Focus- Spectacles For The Brain

Listening is such a key to success in the voice over business, whether following labeling instructions from an agent or direction from a client. My good friend and agent, Erik Sheppard will not even listen to an audition if the the talent hasn’t labeled the audition according to his instruction. When we don’t listen, we are creating more work for the other person. Not listening to a client or an agent can be toxic toward your career. People want to work with talent who can follow instructions.
This is also very important when training with a voice-over coach. The coach is there to take you to the next level. Really, this applies to any coaching, schooling, etc. If we don’t listen to their instruction, we are wasting our time and not getting the most of it.
In this crazy world of so many gadgets, multi-tasking, pushing to do more, it can be hard to focus and things we communicate look fuzzy. Especially, if one chooses to only communicate via e-mail. The tone can easily get lost in the message. If you are unsure of what to do, don’t assume what you DO know is good enough. Ask the questions. Pick up the phone and call your agent or client.
A small thing that can make a huge difference in the multi-tasking area is to stay off the Internet and email while on the phone. Many of us are guilty of this. Thinking that looking at that email will just take a second and we can do both. But we can’t. That is when we miss very important information.
So let’s try to bring things back into focus. Take time to listen and don’t be doing two things at once or thinking about the next thing you’re going to say. A clear view so we can communicate more effectively.
“I know that you believe you understand what you think I said, but I’m not sure you realize that what you heard is not what I meant.” ~Robert McCloskey

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Gully jumping - get out of the ditch!

Life is full of highs and lows - we get sidetracked into the ditch and have to find our way back to the road we are meant to travel. We need to jump out of the gully.

This past week I ran into a roadblock. It made me realize a few things & make some changes.

I have a cornea condition called, “Cornea Dystrophy”, a disorder that clouds up your vision and creates a constant burning sensation.  It’s a problem that heals and then comes back. During the times that it is acting up like this last week, it makes it difficult to focus on work through the pain and struggle of trying to read a script.  I always fight through it & manage to get everything done but it seems to be twice as hard to accomplish. I always tell myself that I am lucky and that things could be much worse.  What if I were a Pilot?  My career would likely be put on hold or even over. First realization. 

When facing a hurdle, it is natural to run for the ditch and give up. It’s too easy to just let the frustration overwhelm you causing you to just walk away from your project. Second realization. If you make sure to take a short break when you feel like that and then get back to your project - it will run much smoother and you will feel better. My days were difficult while dealing with my eye but when I would take just a few minutes to rest it, it made all the difference. When doing voice-overs, If you are dealing with pain or discomfort, don’t force it to happen when it’s not there.  Your frustration can lead to a dissatisfied client because they will hear it in your recording.

Third realization. We are all dealing with struggles at different points in our lives. It is the way we look at those struggles, our attitude that makes or breaks us. When facing a challenge, find a way to jump out or around it. What can you do differently?  How can you manage your time, so that these types of hurdles don’t get in the way of delivering excellence?

There is always a detour around every roadblock and you might even enjoy the scenery.

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Favorite Mom Moment

My favorite Mom moment was when she came and had lunch with me in the first grade at Champlin Elementary School. They had designated a certain day of the year where parents could come and have lunch with their kids.  It was a proud moment in my life and one that has continued to stick with me. I remember being really sad when she left and I almost started crying! I did everything to fight the tears because I knew everyone else was around. Hey, we had egos and reputations to protect in the first grade! Seriously, it's moments like these that we should cherish forever. By the way, I also think that was the last time I ate a long dog roll-up!  

Happy Mother's Day, Mom!  

Monday, May 2, 2011

Team TNT!

Voice Overs By Terry Daniel Inc would like to welcome Tracy Blowers to the team!  Tracy is the new Client Relations Manager and will be handling day to day operations including scheduling (Thank God!) and other aspects of marketing and client development.  

She will also be in charge of giving Terry a massage once in a while.  Ha! Seriously, I am very excited about our new direction.  She came up with a killer plan a couple of months back on how it could work and I loved it!  Let the journey begin.

Cheers to TNT!

Friday, April 29, 2011

Spring Rain

I love sunny days but rainy days always seem to bring out the deepest memories and emotions.  Sometimes I like to stare out my dining room window and watch the rain fall.  It's my way of meditating or finding my zen.  I'm so focused on work during the day, sometimes too focused that I lose sight of how beautiful everything is.

The lawn is starting to green up.  I love this time of the year when flowers and plants start to show their stuff!  It's like, "Here I am, world.  Now take of care of me or else!"  :-)  The birds are battling for position at the bird feeder and squirrel's are showing off their moves in the grass.

We often don't take enough time to smell the flowers or feel the spring breeze on our skin.  Be careful or you might just miss how beautiful life can be.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011


Today was a really frustrating day and all I wanted at the end of the day, was a good cry.  I don't think I have had a good cry for well over a year.  So much emotion is bottled up inside me.  Crying comes easy for most folks.  Sometimes I wish it did for me.  Exercise and a good cry can make you forget about all the stressful stuff. Perhaps I need to watch The Champ, have a glass of red wine and listen to any song by Alison Krauss at the same time.  That should do it!

Saturday, April 16, 2011


Change can be frightening and wonderful all that the same time.  In a couple of weeks, my girlfriend will be my new assistant.  Even though it can be a stressful transition, we are very excited about this venture and our future. Tracy is a very talented photographer but also has a mind for marketing and I am honored to have her on board with my business.

My voiceover business has enjoyed success over the past few years and this will be a positive step forward.  Sometimes you just have to go for it, instead of allowing too much time to pass without doing anything about it.  Onward we march!  

Monday, April 4, 2011

The Disappointing Snack

I found myself getting discouraged today over the most inconsequential developments.  Perhaps it's a Monday thing.  I took a few steps back and realized that it's okay to feel a little off kilter once in a while.  Sometimes I need to remind myself that I am doing everything I want to be doing.  Recording and working from home.

But what crawled into my brain and made me feel so off kilter today?  Better yet, what crawled into my stomach?  I've decided to blame it on the original flavored yogurt I had last night.   It was the first time I have ever had it and it wasn't pretty.  Even with fruit and granola mixed in, it still tasted like Elmer's glue.  For the first time in my life, I was jealous of what my dog had in her dish.  It didn't make me sick but for some strange reason, it put me in a bad mood.  Disappointing snacks can do that.  I will rebound tonight and have some cantaloupe.

Alison Krauss & Union Station: "Paper Airplane" official music video

Welcome back, AKUS!

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Saturday, April 2, 2011

An Epidemic: Mediocrity

How many times have we said the phrase “Ah, it’s good enough” when we knew darn well that is wasn't?  God knows, I have been guilty of that myself.  Mediocrity should be illegal in this country.  A crime punishable by a slap in the face and a kick in the ass!  Okay, I’m kidding.  Sort of.

When I first started out in voiceovers, I didn’t have the same principles that I do now.  I would record a script and send it off.  Always with the old “that should be good enough” phrase dancing in my brain and rushing to move on to the next project.  I realized how unsatisfied I felt working this way – I knew I needed to make a change.  Once I started giving every project my best and full attention, I felt fulfilled.  It actually ended up giving me more time in my day because I wasn’t going back and forth with clients to make changes and edits.

When we settle for mediocrity and don’t do our best – our integrity and creativity starts to get lost. We tend to spread ourselves too thin, so we don’t do anything well.  I can say from experience that this is not a good place to be – for ourselves, our clients or even society.  Whether I am producing a voiceover demo for a student or a commercial for a client, I always take the time to review it.  Listen!  Listen!  Listen!  You are always going to be able to do it better.  Don’t do something once, say that it’s great and pass it on.  Work at it like an artist works on a painting.

The creative industry is filled with talented people with short attention spans, I should know, I am one of them!  Clients used to tell me that I sounded like I was in a hurry or that I was rushing the copy.  Again, this goes back to the frame of mind I was in.  I was not in the mindset of a professional.  I would always try and get each project done as quickly as possible without even thinking about the client.  Shame on you, Terry!  I was settling for mediocrity.

The great Martin Luther King Jr said “Whatever your life’s work is, do it well.  A man should do his job so well that the living, the dead and the unborn could do it no better.”

Find your passion, don’t settle and you will be amazed at what you can do!

Surround Yourself With The Extraordinary

When you surround yourself with inspiring and uplifting people, amazing things will happen.  It makes such a difference to have people in your life who support & encourage you.  It can make the difference of a successful, fulfilling life or having an average, uninspiring life.  Life is so short...don’t we all want to feel inspired?!

When you are trying to accomplish your objectives and goals, stay away from cynical glass half empty folks that will only bring you down.  Most times, when people discourage you, they are wrestling with demons on their own.

When I took the big step of starting my own voice-over business, I definitely had those people telling me it was too competitive and not to waste my time.  While these people might have been trying to support me in their own way - it was very discouraging.  I chose to focus on the people that would say to me “you are talented and you should go for it!  Every business is competitive and that should never stop you from following your dreams.  

Even if you were to fail at least you tried - we learn the most from our failures.  I think we always have to keep that in perspective.  What is the worst thing that could happen if you did fail - then you move on to the next thing with more knowledge and confidence in knowing that you tried at something instead of always wishing you would.  Edison had 10,000 prototypes of the light bulb. What an amazing example of perseverance and not listening to the naysayers.

So many people give up too easily due to FEAR. We all get stuck in the spin, forgetting to grab hold of what you want and letting others steer your life...the DAILY ROUTINE.  Ugh.  Sometimes, the only person that is in the way is yourself. Take a minute and just imagine what you could do if you did get out of your own way.  If fear wasn’t stopping you.  If you weren’t listening to that little voice in your head as a result of those few naysayers.  Listen to your gut and GO FOR IT!  

Find your EXTRAORDINARY.  Surround yourself with those that support you, can give constructive criticism and help you to move FORWARD. 

My Ireland Awakening

You have to wonder what the world would be like if the people in every country were as nice as the folks in Ireland.  I've never been to a place where every single person walking down the street looked up to say hello. Not because its polite but because they want to & they are interested. There was a general feeling of happiness & contentment all around.  It's no wonder people love to visit there.  We've all heard the expression "stop and smell the flowers.". This is the Irish way...they don’t talk about it, they live it. It made me “stop” and think about my life and my country.  Our country seems to be out of control with being stressed, rushing to fit it all in and our insatiable craving for instant gratification.  We miss so much living this way. 

Taking this trip has really refreshed my energy and creative side.  When you’re stressed out, the best thing you can do is take a vacation to rejuvenate your creative juices. I know we all know this but so many times we forget and don’t make the time.  This trip was confirmation for me how balance in a person’s life makes all the difference, it makes a happier society just like Ireland.  There are times when I feel institutionalized in the studio. Ireland was my awakening to not let that step out and enjoy what is around me.

I got a chance to see a good client and friend when I was there.  His name is Alastair McDermott.  He had hired me a few years ago to do a voiceover on a fairly large project.  We met in Dublin on my first night and we had a fantastic time.  It was great meeting him in person!  One of the most rewarding things about my industry and working with people all over the world, is the opportunity to meet them face to face. We had a blast watching Rugby and I am now officially addicted to another sport! Thank you Alastair!

Galway was a spiritual experience.  A beautiful part of the country.  The air was crisp, the scenery was breathtaking and the music was passionate!  Some of these pubs were packed on Sunday and Monday night!  One of my favorite hot spots was the legendary “Quays” pub, where we met some wonderful people from seven different countries and watched six crazy talented bands rock the lights out!  Galway was my favorite part of the trip.

We have all witnessed times where we have gone somewhere and felt like we were there before.  This is how I felt in Ireland.  It was the strangest case of deja vu I have ever experienced.  After soaking it in, it felt like a place where everything in my life started to make sense.  There was something magical in the air.  I was thinking differently and not taking life for granted.  Perhaps it had something to do with the beauty in the area and all the wonderful, deep conversations I had with so many kindhearted folks.

Thank you Ireland!

A special thanks to longtime friend, Sean Barnard for making this trip so enjoyable and for showing me the town where his Great, Great, Great Grandfather had lived.  Thanks to Alastair for taking so much time out of his schedule to hang out with us and special thanks to Miram Sadlier Barry for taking care of us at “The Old Bank B & B” in Bruff!