Audio Book Production

I’m occasionally asked which audio books I have produced (in the States it’s called “directing” but I’ll stick with the Australian term, since it was all done in Australia) and it’s not a question easily answered. Between 1998 and 2004 (under my married name D. Beith Ruschena), I was lucky enough to produce more than 400 audiobooks, of all genres, for both restricted and commercial release, so naming them is out of the question; instead, I thought I’d put up the links to a few that I particularly enjoyed producing and which are available internationally.

The last one on the list, The Tripp Diaries #1 is more of an audio extravaganza than a simple audiobook, with background music, special effects and foley for the audiobook which is in episodes and embedded in an old-style kids radio show. The Tripp Diaries #1 is for the “keep the kids enthralled in the back seat” audience. I had an absolute ball over many long nights in the studio, as script editor and co-producer working with Stig Wemys and John Rowland and we ended up with a disc full of fun!

If any of the following hit your genre and/or age-range sweet spot, I recommend them!

Saving Francesca ©2003 Melina Marchetta; (P)2003 Bolinda Publishing Pty Ltd.

Saving Francesca  by Melina Marchetta

Winner of Audiofile Magazine Earphones Award; Selected: Best Audio Books of 2004, Audiofile Magazine

Narrated by Rebecca Macauley

Producer: D. Beith Ruschena, Bolinda Audio

 

”Francesca doesn’t really need saving, even though it seems her life is going down the loo. With the help of loyal friends, Francesca copes with being one of 30 female students at St. Sebastian’s (formerly, School for Boys), falling in love with one of the most irritatingly smug guys around, and dealing with her strong mother’s sudden breakdown.

Rebecca Macauley pauses often, allowing the listener to absorb the strong emotions Francesca experiences and to catch a breath after laughing hard at the situations she gets into. While it may take a bit to get used to the accent of this Australian import, the universal story of a young woman finding her way translates in all cultures.” – M.M.O. Audiofile Magazine © AudioFile 2004, Portland, Maine

Holy Cow ©2002 Sarah Macdonald; (P)2003 Bolinda Publishing Pty Ltd

HOLY COW : An Indian Adventure by Sarah Macdonald

Winner AudioFile Earphones Award, Finalist 2005 Audie Awards

Read by Kate Hosking

Producer: D. Beith Ruschena, Bolinda Audio

"Sarah MacDonald leaves her career in Sydney to go to India to join her partner, who promptly sets off to cover world events in Afghanistan (among other places) that are likely to put him at risk but also make his career. Deciding to make the most of her time in India alone, MacDonald sets out to explore as many spiritual traditions as she can in a short period of time.

Prepare for a fast-moving and masterful narration by Kate Hosking. Her characterization of the Indian characters is nuanced and fun. The contrast with the distinctive Australian accents of MacDonald and other ex-pats adds to the sense of adventure and excitement and provides a backdrop for spiritual understanding.” – J.E.M. Audiophile Magazine© AudioFile 2004, Portland, Maine

FOREST : A Journey from the Wild by Sonya Hartnett

ForestRead by Caroline Lee

Producer: D. Beith Ruschena, Bolinda Audio

“[This] story about Kian, a house cat abandoned in a forest with two kittens, Cally and Jem, has no sentimentality in the writing or reading. Kian struggles with the feeling that he's not equal to his current situation while Jem and Cally confront the idea that they don't want to leave the forest.

Lee gives a muted reading that conveys the cats' reliance on instinct, rather than emotion. Her performance is imbued with the sense of menace Kian feels from the forest and all the animals surrounding him. The production gives listeners a thought-provoking glimpse into a world that seems both alien and familiar” - A.F. (c) AudioFile 2004, Portland, Maine

Wombat Chronicles ©2001 Marguerite Hann Syme; (P)2002 Bolinda Publishing Pty Ltd.

The Wombat Chronicles by Marguerite Hann Syme

Narrated by Rebecca Macauley

Producer: D. Beith Ruschena, Bolinda Audio

“Barry may be the son of the most successful wombat couple in Wombat District, but that doesn't impress Portia-Louise. She has eyes only for Lenny the Returned Wombat. At Pottery class, at Dance class, it's just the same. But as Wombat District prepares for its annual festival, Barry, with the help of the willing but unreliable emus and the ingenious pelicans, is going to find a way to be noticed.”

The Tripp Diaries 1 © Mezzanine Productions; (P) Bolinda Publishing Pty Ltd.

The Tripp Diaries #1: The Tripps vs. The Traffic by Stig Wemyss

Narrated by Stig Wemyss , Brett Swain , Hamish Hughes , Megan Rees ,Matthew King , Ruby Rees-Wemyss Script Editor & Co-producer: D. Beith Ruschena, Bolinda Audio Audio Engineer & co-producer: John Rowland, Rowland Audio

"A high-energy introduction brings the reader right into the back seat with young Nick Tripp as he reluctantly begins another car trip with his family. Stig Wemyss is joined by a cast of other readers, including special guest Alan Fletcher, to bring us the story of the Tripps’ adventure. It begins innocently enough as a family holiday but quickly develops into something far more as Nick’s father takes a small detour to chase suspected koala kidnappers. The story is interspersed with not to be missed Tripp tips on how to survive touring holidays." - Reading Time Vol 48 [Jan 05]