Jim Cooper: Cancer, Caregiving, and Voice Over

VO Pro: Voiceover and Voice Acting

22-01-2024 • 57分

Today, my guest is audiobook narrator, voice actor, and author, Jim Cooper.
Jim shares his experience as a caregiver for his wife Sally during her battle with cancer. He discusses how he wrote a book on cancer caregiving and the impact it had on his wife and their relationship. Jim offers advice for those facing a cancer diagnosis and emphasizes the importance of finding support and taking care of oneself.
He also reflects on the voiceover industry and the challenges faced by voice actors, particularly in the audiobook sector. In this conversation, Jim and I talk about the shift towards multi-person audiobooks and the need for narrators to adapt to this change. We also address the problem of accepting lower rates and the negative impact it has on the industry.
This is our interview with the Big Dog, Jim Cooper.
Takeaways
  • Cancer caregiving is a life-changing experience that requires adjustments and support.
  • Fear is a natural response to a cancer diagnosis, but seeking help and finding distractions can provide some relief.
  • Logistical and emotional challenges arise during holidays and special occasions for cancer patients and caregivers.
  • The voiceover industry has been impacted by the influx of new talent and changes in the audiobook market.
  • Building relationships and having acting skills are crucial for success in the audiobook industry. The voiceover industry is shifting towards multi-person audiobooks, requiring narrators to adapt to this change.
  • Accepting lower rates as a voiceover artist can have a negative impact on the industry and set a precedent for undervaluing talent.
  • When seeking coaching or training, it is important to rely on referrals from experienced professionals rather than self-promoted coaches.
  • Developing a thick skin is crucial in the voiceover industry to handle rejection and self-doubt.
  • The perception of audiobook narrators is changing, and they are being recognized as an integral part of the voiceover community.
  • The Hydrant podcast is expanding to include creative artists from various fields.
Chapters
00:00 Introduction and Background
06:53 Writing the Book on Cancer Caregiving
11:08 Sally's Reaction to the Book
14:42 Advice for Those Facing Cancer
19:14 Dealing with Fear as a Caregiver
23:00 Navigating Holidays and Emotional Challenges
28:27 Lessons Learned as a Voice Actor
32:04 The State of the Voiceover Industry
36:58 Shift towards multi-person audiobooks
38:07 The problem with accepting lower rates
40:17 The negative impact of bottom feeding
41:04 Questioning self-promoted coaches
42:33 The importance of referrals and industry experience
42:58 The need to convince people of their own worth
43:06 The lack of feedback in the voiceover industry
44:15 Developing a thick skin through exposure
46:19 Dealing with rejection and self-doubt
50:31 Changing perception of audiobook narrators
56:13 Expanding the Hydrant podcast to creative artists
Get Jim's book, The Not So Little Book of Cancer Caregiving: https://amzn.to/3S7Iavd
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