Recording the Chocolat audiobook

This was my first full-length audiobook, recorded by Orion Audio in their studios in Clerkenwell.

To order it, click here.

Here’s a little background on the process:

Q: What was it like, recording CHOCOLAT so long after writing it?

A. Strange, and a little spooky. I don’t re-read my books once they’ve come out, and so I wasn’t sure how many of the details I was going to remember, or how well I’d be able to get back into the world of that first Lansquenet book. As it happened, it was a little like re-visiting Narnia: nothing had changed at all, except me. I was a new mother when I first wrote the book: now my daughter is 24. And I hadn’t realized, at the time of writing CHOCOLAT, to what extent it’s really not about chocolate at all, but rather a love story between a mother and her child.

Q: Has your style changed since CHOCOLAT?

A: Not perceptibly, although I sometimes found myself mentally wanting to edit out dialogue tags and adverbs as I went along. I used those far more in those days than I do now, and in an audiobook especially, you really don’t need them. But it wasn’t at all hard, getting back to that voice – and given that I’m writing the follow-up to PEACHES at the moment, I found it a very interesting way of reminding myself of details and thematic points that I need to include in the new one…

Q: How long did the process take?

A: Two days. The audio department had reserved the studio for four, so I’m guessing I did okay…

Q: What’s it like?

A: Basically, you sit in a tiny little soundproofed room with a printout of the book (you want as few opportunities to rustle pages as possible) on a stand in front of you. Opposite, there’s another book, in which the producer sits. He’s in charge of the recording (and making sure you don’t fluff words, or make clicking sounds with your tongue, or tummy rumbles (to which I am especially prone when talking about food!).

Q: Would you do another audiobook?

A: Like a shot. Let’s see what happens…