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What Growing Grass Taught Me About Voice Over

Several years ago I owned a home in Peterborough, Ontario. A lovely home on a wonderful corner lot. The yard space was plentiful. The grass was not.

For nearly two years I did everything I could possibly think of to try and grow grass. I worked the earth using every tool short of a farm tractor. I tried every seed and fertilizer known to man. I had the soil tested. I consulted experts. I seeded and re-seeded and re-seeded again.

grass-growing-toolsTwo years. No grass.

This month I’ll move into a new apartment that has a lawn. Or at least, it has yard space. When I first walked through the patio doors to investigate I found my own personal jungle. It was an overgrown nightmare filled with every weed imaginable. The stone retaining wall was collapsed and buried.

What lied before me was a big job that would take many hours, days and weeks of labor and care.

With assistance from my mom and sister, the wall was rebuilt and the jungle was gutted.

The rest was up to me.

For several weeks now, I’ve been trying to grow grass. It’s like deja-vu all over again.

Seeding and re-seeding.

Weeding and more weeding.

Working the earth. Watering it too.

A finally, last night, I sat on my patio and gazed upon my yard.

watering-the-lawnAll 37 blades of grass.


At least once a week, often more, I receive notes from well meaning individuals who are looking to get into voice over or have already made the jump. Some of them are taking their time. Following the right path. Investing in coaching. Working on quality demos.

Slowly, steadily, properly building their business.

Others are hoping I’ll give them the magic bullet. That one key piece of advice that will instantly launch them into voice over stardom.

Here’s the thing, as I sat in my chair looking at my 37 blades of grass, I couldn’t help but think of my voice over career and how, in many ways, it’s been like trying to grow grass.

I sure as heck didn’t break in overnight. And, like my first two year attempt at growing grass, many of my early years in voice over were filled with failed attempts, despite my best efforts and intentions.

my-lawnInstead, my journey into becoming a full time voice over talent is more of a story of patience and perseverance. Of endurance.

One blade of grass becomes two. Then three. And after some more time, more watering, more fertilizing, it becomes a patch, and then a bigger patch, and eventually, it becomes a lawn.

Of course, the work doesn’t stop there. Then you’ve got to maintain it. Mow it. Weed it.

It’s a process that never ends.

Like voice over.

Building a voice over career, like growing a lawn, takes a lot of time, a lot of effort, a lot of patience, and investing in the right combination of tools in order to see growth.

Eventually, one day, you’ll be able to sit in a chair on your patio, and reflect back on all it took to build your career, how truly blessed you are, and you can do it while admiring your grass!