After a break, the blog is back in shape. Let’s start with a little review of what happened this summer (with very cool incoming things!)
A quick reminder if you have forgotten/ignored it: My two-book series, Land of Mist (Terre de Brume in French) published by Rageot, is the subject of a podcast adaptation by the RTBF broadcast company (one of the two main Belgian TV channels).
I recently posted on the social media a review of my experience of narrative podcasting and how to adapt a novel in this context!
What is a narrative podcast?
It’s simple: imagine one of your favourite series… but only with the sound on. In other words, a narrative podcast is an audio story. A very different experience from an audio novel, which is therefore read by one or more narrators (I hadn’t really understood the difference at first glance).
First step: dissecting the novel.
This involves listing the characters, the places, the magical systems explored throughout the book (since we’re talking about a fantasy world), the various atmospheres, etc. Together with the team in charge of the project, we thought a lot about a vital question: how to translate a fantasy universe into sounds? How can you make the listeners understand it without losing them completely & without lengthy dialogues? How can you give them keys to understanding this world?
At this point, it is a clever combination of sound effects, character dialogues and…
I’ll leave the surprise to you (it would be a shame to spoil it at this stage!).
In any case, this is one of the aspects that I find the most fascinating to work on, probably because it’s a real challenge and that’s what this podcast is all about! This very minutious work accomplished, we move on to the next stage: adaptation of the book into a script (yes, like in a TV series, it’s the same principle).
Sorting out the essential information to be found in the podcast, retranscribing the characters, places and actions as faithfully as possible, alternating between dialogue and sound effects…
This is just a glimpse of what this adaptation work involves!
BONUS: when I’m asked very precise questions about some detail of the story and I’m stalled for 5 minutes (because I haven’t had it in mind for a long time!).
(and yes, I had to reread some passages to be sure of what I was talking about…)
At the moment I can tell you that the second (and last) season of the podcast is finished as well – and that I’ll spend my weekend revising scripts 😀
Next step: the casting and the actual adaptation! I can’t wait (and no doubt I’ll have the opportunity to tease you further by then!).
My writing priority at the moment is The Last Shadow… What is it all about?
Actually, I’ve talked about it before, but not under that name – I used to call it (in a very original way, I must admit!) Secret Project.
It started as a two-book series, the first one was finalised, re-read and finally submitted to a publisher. Who finally said “No, thank you, not as is.”
Rejection hit hard, I admit. Whether it’s your first, second or ninth novel, as in my case, a rejection always feels like a door slamming in your face. After some time – writer’s tip: always take some tile before reacting to a refusal – I examined it. I had the chance to discuss it face to face with the publisher in question. After a very long and honest chat, I understood what, for her, didn’t “work” in this novel.
And as I am persistent by nature – at least for the projects that are close to my heart – I have taken the time to reflect. As the project had not been subject to any contract, I could afford it. And I decided to start from scratch. And, first of all, to turn it into a single book.
I won’t hide that it’s a challenge, that I’m literally fighting with this version, but I know I’ve made the right choice. That this story deserves to be written, to be read and, above all, that it has already benefited greatly from the advice of professionals who have taken time and energy to read it and give me feedback. Honestly, it’s invaluable!
Being back to school/work (or what it means in this very peculiar year…) often means starting new projects and this blog is no exception… starting with the daily #conseilecriture (Writing tips) on Twitter & Instagram!
An opportunity to combine my translation and writing skills! Please note that these “tips” are suggestions, absolutely not orders to be taken as such. Test, try, keep what you like. And remember that there is no infallible recipe in writing 😉
Find them on social media every day (10 am during the week, random schedule at weekends)
Wish you a very nice weekend/bank holiday for British friends, see you soon!