Sounds of the Season 5: Arrows and Spears

Because Sometimes Only Hearing is Believing

I’m featuring sounds from my recent audiobook projects, just for fun, and I hope that this feature of my narration work will resonate with authors and listeners. Here are some of the others.

Many times my FX are drawn from a marvelous website called Freesound.org.  I cut, slice and alter them using effects found in the Audacity tool (also free to download and use). Sometimes I create the sound myself, using my voice or things to hand.

Featured Sound: Arrows and Spears

Believe it or not there are actually several FX on Freesound for “battle” including medieval-style conflicts. You can hear horses, the clash of swords, men shouting, it’s incredible. Sometimes it’s Live-Action Roleplaying stuff and others I think may be drawn from movie soundtracks. I’ve used them before.

But for the recent prequel to Gilbert Stack’s Legionnaire series, entitled The Jungles of Ekanga, I had a special challenge. During a climactic moment of the action, I needed the sound of Roman soldiers armed with throwing spears being harassed by jungle tribesmen firing arrows. No clashing, no shouts or horses, just impacts. So I crafted it.

Here’s the sound, Arrows and Spears:

How It Sounded

There are many great FX for arrows, but I added some that qualified as “thunk” or “clunk” to get the spear impacts. I also threw in a couple instances of “chopping meat” for the ones that hit their targets. All this was to run under the narration and hopefully not distract too badly from the tale: what you’re hearing is much louder than the volume I used.

How It Looks

I should probably do a post someday on “How I Suck at Searching” because the results of my terms is often both depressing and amusing. Below is one lovely photo I found with “Romans in the jungle”. But I also got pictures from various iterations of “Survivor”; and there is evidently either a person or a product, or both, having to do with ED that, ahm, “comes up” on that search. Sigh…

The Legionnaire series by Gilbert Stack is available through #12 on Amazon and I have the privilege of the first six chapters out on Audible. It is a truly marvelous adventure with epic scope but lovely bite-sized pieces for you to read and enjoy. Start with The Fire Islands if you like, and then later if you find yourself geeking out, come back and enjoy this prequel, the kind of We-Knew-Him-When stuff that the fans really love to hear.

Sounds of the Season 4: Guarded Portal

Because Sometimes Only Hearing is Believing

I’m featuring sounds from my recent audiobook projects, just for fun, and I hope that this feature of my narration work will resonate with authors and listeners. Here are some of the others.

Many times my FX are drawn from a marvelous website called Freesound.org.  I cut, slice and alter them using effects found in the Audacity tool (also free to download and use). Sometimes I create the sound myself, using my voice or things to hand.

Featured Sound: Guarded Portal

Seems like so long ago now, but my first real-for-true outside author who hired me for narration work– Gilbert Stack had me for the Legionnaire series but he’s a cherished friend and colleague– was M. R. Matthias for his series Fantastica. He liked some of the sounds I installed (and asked me to drop others); I’m sure I learned a lot from helping to tell this epic tale over the course of four books (now available as a bundle).

Briefly– there’s a chamber filled with tomes of lore, the entrance guarded against entry by evildoers (the innocent can pass through freely). When the bad guys try to enter, the magical ward goes off, with fatal results.

Here’s the sound, Guarded Portal:

How It Sounded

With regret, I threw together FX in the early days without careful notes on which contributor to Freesound were the authors. But I’m fairly sure there were two sounds here, one of several Lightning sounds and another having to do with Electric/Zap. The challenge with these short FX is to insert something that’s evocative without interrupting the flow of the tale. The story is always, always first and foremost about the words the author wrote. I tried to put this in so that the listener might jump a second, and thus become more fully immersed in that tale.

How It Looks

Yeah, no. Google doesn’t have much in the way of a lightning-like flash that goes off when someone tries to cross a portal. But there is a company called Zap that makes garage door openers! Fantasy with its magic and monsters exceeds our experience– that’s really the point, isn’t it?. So the listener must just imagine that moment when the evil sorcerer gets an also-evil but unsuspecting thug to try and cross the portal.

The Fantastica series is available in all formats on Amazon and Audible. It remains one of the best selling volumes of my narration collection.