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Watch your S’s

tip for writing better voice over copy

The hardest thing for a VOice actor…

It isn’t performing a funny character that strains the voice or pronouncing a multi-syllable medical term that no one but doctors have ever spoken.

Nope, one of the hardest things for a voice actor?  Pronouncing two S’s back to back. As in:

“That’s when she discoverS Spic-and-Span’s true superpower, cleaning dirty dog dirt.”

One of two things typically occurs when two S’s are put together like this:

1. The S’s get slurred together. This can much two words into one weird hybrid word, or can make the voice actor sound drunk. Neither sounds appealing.

2. The S’s get over-enunciated. This sounds completely unnatural in almost every piece of copy, especially since so much copy calls for “natural”, “authentic”, or “conversational.” Over-enunciating sounds like reading, not conversing. 

It’s an easy fix!

Fortunately, there’s (usually) an easy fix. Just read the copy out loud, and if you run into a couple of Ss awkwardly hanging out together, see if you can change one of the words without changing the message of the copy. Here’s an example of how to fix the Spic and Span sentence:

“”That’s when she experienced Spic-and-Span’s true superpower, cleaning dirty dog dirt.”

Unfortunately, this is a very common problem. Fortunately, it’s also a pretty easy

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