Making Your Own Hours as an Audiobook Narrarator
with Jillian Yetter
Jillian Yetter is a former high school English Teacher turned Audiobook Narrator who is based out of Delaware with her family. She loved working in the classroom but was strongly encouraged by a doctor to find a different profession so she could focus on her health; and, after a short stint baking macarons for parties, she discovered she could make a career out of reading books as a voice actor/narrator. Jillian dug in and started recording and engineering around 30 of her own books before hiring an editor to help more with the postproduction side and has been a narrator now for 4 years with about 80 titles in that time. She has a warm, bright voice with a youthful tone perfect for narrating young adult and new adult titles, and she uses a pseudonym if publishing anything over a PG13 rating.
In this episode, Jillian explains that audiobook narrating takes quite a number of hours of work, researching, and editing for each hour of published audio. She been able to balance working while her kids are at school or sleeping. For those who are considering audiobook narration, she recommends doing the research as there is more to it than most realize at first. However, it is an industry that offers more flexibility than many others which has worked very well for her and her family. She typically schedules out her books with a turnaround date about three months in the future, and this gives her enough time to meet her deadlines even when she becomes sick or has a health complication, and she can accept jobs and record on her own schedule while still caring for her kids before and after school and in the summertime.
Jillian has moved from recording in a closet to her very own in-home recording studio built by her husband, and she's upgraded her equipment a few times over the last couple of years as well (currently recording with a Neumann TLM 102 microphone). In order to give herself accountability while working on her own schedule, Jillian uses Focusmate or sometimes records live on TikTok, and she has joined groups for those in the audiobook industry and works with a mentor and coach for business growth. She is a member of the APA (Audio Publishers Association) and PANA (Professional Audiobook Narrators Association) and has worked with publishers such as Tantor, Brilliance, The Audio Flow, and Bloomsbury Publishing.
If you'd like to reach out to Jillian, you can find her on the contact form of her website or on Tiktok.