Audio and Aural Storytelling

So, there a few ways to address the problems I brought up in the post about writing for audiofiction.  Really, any time one medium needs to be adapted to another, changes happen.  Just picture your favorite film adaptation of a book and you’ll see what I mean. Visual to audio is no different.

One solution is to make changes to the script that you hand over to the narrator.  It can be small changes such as adding in more “he said/she said” tags to bring clarity to the spoken story.  Or it can be something more elaborate. Mary Robinette Kowal discusses what she did when writing a story for an audio anthology and then adapting the audio script to print.   It’s the opposite direction than the one we’re discussing, but it is still an interesting behind-the-scenes process.

I also find it very encouraging that she took the time to think about the transition between one medium to the other.  In a world where time = money, she could have just gone the traditional route of writing a story and tossing it thoughtlessly to her narrator to handle, but she didn’t.

Take a look at another unique adaptation. Lackadaisy Cats, a webcomic set in the 1920s Midwest, is entirely a visual storytelling medium.  The story takes place in pictures and narration and speech bubbles.  Think an audio version of a graphic novel would be impossible? Guess again! A group of talented, creative people put together  Lackadaisy Phonograph.  It’s like a radio show of the pages, complete with multiple voices, sound effects, and period music.

Speaking of radio adaptations, the most famous I can think of is The War of the Worlds by H.G. Wells’  1938 Radio adaption by Orson Welles.  According to tradition, Orson Welles fooled millions of people into thinking the martians were actually attacking, provoking drastic measures and even a few suicides.

Can you think of any more examples?

(To be continued!)


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