JIAM Narrator Spotlight: Janina Edwards

Posted June 22, 2018 by Jen in JIAM Tags:

Image Celebrating Audiobook month
June Is Audiobook Month

Each June, audiophiles from around the country celebrate all things audiobook. Since we love to listen and review audiobooks here at That’s What I’m Talking About, we are participating in our own Audiobook celebration. 

What would an audiobook be without a narrator? As part of Audiobook Month, we are spotlighting various narrators so you can learn a bit more about who they are and what they do.

Narrator Spotlights!

Today we shine the spotlight on:

Janina Edwards

Tell us how long have you been narrating books?

Since 1987.

What genres do you cover? Do you have a favorite?

I’m not at the point where I can turn down any opportunity, but my mission is to give a voice to stories, messages, and writers that reflect authentic stories of people of color, and/or humanist and yogic principles. Sometimes that takes the form of romance, non-fiction, mystery or other genres.

Do you do any other voice work or acting?

My other voiceover area is elearning/instruction/educational.

What is your favorite job to date?

Can’t answer that. It’s like asking me which of my children is my favorite. I don’t want the other audiobooks to have hurt feelings.

How do prepare for a job? Does the preparation depend on the genre or type of book?

Step one . . . read the book. Ideally more than once, making note of different characters, qualities of voice, emotional life. Doesn’t matter what genre or style. Step two, if I’m allowed to communicate/speak directly to the author, I would reach out and ask questions about characters, idiosyncratic word pronunciations, that type of thing. Otherwise I reach out to the publisher. Step three research (for pronunciation) any regular words that I need to check. Start to play with character voices. If there are unfamiliar accents research them. That’s pretty much the usual order of events.

If you could narrate any book or work with any author past or present, what would you choose? Why?

One thing I like about my audiobook work is the process of discovering a writer I DON’T have familiarity with. Plus, your audience has fewer expectations with a new author. Audiences have serious expectations of recognized authors (with book series).

Anything else you’d like to share?

My last big release was In the Shadow of 10,000 Hills, by Jennifer Haupt.

About the Narrator:

As a voiceover (justwritecp.biz) I love to narrate audiobooks of all kinds, but my mission is to give a voice to stories, messages, and writers that reflect authentic stories of people of color, and/or humanist and yogic principles. Through my work, I want to give voice to the change I want to see in the world.

I was born in Chicago, IL, and I graduated from New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts, Acting Program. I lived in New York City for 11 years, soaking in the language and rhythms of African and West Indian people in Bed-Stuy. I’ve now lived in Atlanta for the past 20 years swimming in the swagger and sway of the south. As a result, I excel in portraying authentic characters and voices of African Americans and other people of the African Diaspora, plus other English speaking cultures (for example, West Indian, or Yoruba).

My 2018 audiobook The Wedding Date is an Earphones Award winner. My 2016 performance of Voice of Freedom (Dreamscape) was an Audie Finalist. My performances have been noted in AudioFile Magazine more than 6 times.

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