my pauses are tooooo long ?

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philchenevert
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Post by philchenevert » December 2nd, 2010, 10:33 am

When recording something, I just relax and read it the way I would tell it as a story.

But, when going back to listen and edit it, I find that very frequently the spaces that I've left between sentences and other punctuation seem awkward, mostly too long; they just don't 'sound right' to my listening ear. And so I find that most of my editing time is spent reducing those spaces by just the right amount, not too much and not too little, till the flow of words sounds exactly right to my ear for the context. Of course this adds a lot to the editing time since I've got to listen again after each cut to feel the rightness of it, whatever that means. <sigh>

It occurred to me last night, while I was cutting another third of a second from between two sentences, that I may be overdoing this; slipping into OCD or something.

Cutting out the actual flubs in a track takes little time. but those pauses are time consuming. Does anyone else do this? Do you ALL do this? Do we listen much faster than we speak and so my instinct is to speed the darned thing up?

:D Any feedback about your experiences with this would be welcome;
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Post by TriciaG » December 2nd, 2010, 11:08 am

I usually ADD space! I read out loud fairly fast, so I add space and even decrease my tempo by about 3%.

Sometimes long silences bug me when listening, but usually those are the ones between commas, where there shouldn't be a pause. I do like a decent amount of silence so I can digest what is happening.

I guess it depends on how long the pauses are, LOL!

In other words, this post is no help. :roll:
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chocoholic
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Post by chocoholic » December 2nd, 2010, 11:08 am

Can you post an unedited sample for us? I think we are all our own worst critics and it probably sounds fine to everyone else. I think in most cases people are fine trusting their instincts when they record... when pauses are artificially shortened or lengthened, the reading can sound stilted.
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Post by Esky » December 2nd, 2010, 2:14 pm

I definitely find myself spending way too much time editing silence. Generally, I put about .75 seconds between sentences and double that between paragraphs. But while I'm listening, I try to determine if a longer or shorter pause is needed between sentences/paragraphs. Makes my editing time much longer. :|

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Post by Starlite » December 2nd, 2010, 4:43 pm

I generally paste in a half second between sentences (unless the text requires a faster reading) and a full second between paragraphs.

You have to remember that when reading, you can always go back and re-read something you didn't understand. It is much more difficult when listening to go backwards.

I prefer my stories a little slower. Take a listen to gypsygirl's recordings. She reads quite fast but I am still able to understand her. At the other extreme is Peterwhy's recordings. It really is all subjective. Both are favorite readers of mine so I guess I'm no use either LOL.

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Post by catchpenny » December 2nd, 2010, 5:30 pm

TriciaG wrote: In other words, this post is no help. :roll:
But it DID up your post count.
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TriciaG
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Post by TriciaG » December 2nd, 2010, 5:33 pm

LOL! I don't think I need any help with that. :wink:
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Post by Availle » December 2nd, 2010, 6:48 pm

I never use a fixed length for pauses. Some parts go slowly, and can handle longer pauses. Other parts need a faster pace and shorter pauses. Some of the non-fiction I read can get quite heavy, so even pauses of 2 seconds or more are not too long, if if helps digesting the text.
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Post by annise » December 2nd, 2010, 7:18 pm

At the moment I can't think of anything I have listened to with too long pauses - but lots and lots with with too short - especially with non fiction and more literary work (as opposed to fun reads with good story) And longer pauses also help with unfamiliar accents for me.
So without having heard you noooooooooooooo !

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Post by philchenevert » December 2nd, 2010, 9:26 pm

Thanks, everyone. It is always so interesting to get a peek into how others do their recordings and what others like and dislike in things they listen to.

I've done an un retouched clip and will be uploading it later (after my nap) for your candid opinions. :?
http://upload.librivox.org/share/uploads/tests/philpausesample.mp3

:D
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Post by Peter Why » December 3rd, 2010, 12:28 am

For me, I do play with the length of the gaps when I'm editing.

Listening to that sample: to my ear, the gaps are a fraction long (I'd probably reduce them by about a quarter if I was editing one of my own recordings), but I am certain that listening to a longer piece, I'd stop noticing the pace. So my answer is, it's up to you: it sounds fine as it is, but it would also sound fine if you tweak the recordings to suit your listening ear.

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Post by catchpenny » December 3rd, 2010, 9:31 am

I notice with speaking anyway, experienced speakers will pause to collect their thoughts, while the less experienced will say "um", out of a misguided notion that we need to hear something. Pauses let you absorb the information gone before. If I decide to shorten them, I select the pause I want to hear, up the speaker volume and listen for breath. Breath is normal, and gives a vitality to the recording (unless of course, it's a gasping breath) because humans breathe. I've cut out all the breaths before, but it sounds as if the reader is going on and on and on never pausing for a breath. Makes me gasp just to listen. All that to say, don't chop of your breath half-way through.
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Post by TriciaG » December 3rd, 2010, 9:45 am

I think it's wonderful as is.

Especially when there is dialog, I like to pause a decent amount between speakers so that the listener can know it's a different speaker. (OK, did that make sense?) :roll:
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Post by Cori » December 3rd, 2010, 12:07 pm

[Yes, it made sense to me, Tricia!]

I spend a LOT of time editing silence too -- only in one recording has it slipped into clear OCD, though: Tender Buttons has uniform pauses throughout, something like, 0.5 sec silence for a comma, 1 sec silence for a semi colon, 2 secs for a fullstop and 3 or 4 secs for a paragraph. But that's a fairly unusual text, where I felt it was appropriate to inflict that kind of structure on the audio. Normally I adjust by ear as I edit, almost always lengthening the pauses.
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