Twitter is the most amazing thing. Don’t get jealous Facebook, I love you too. It’s just that Twitter is so often an introduction to people who I end up totally crushing on. One of those people is the pitch perfect narrator Xe Sands. We found each other on Twitter through my tweets about narrating the audiobook for LIFT. Xe was encouraging and full of wonderful information and her website always has new and wonderful listens. My favorite is a narration of the Velveteen Rabbit (with gorgeous storybook for an interactive listen), but don’t take my word for it. The Publishers Weekly “Listen Up” blog is a big fan as well.
While I felt the best thing would be for me to narrate my own memoir, I absolutely fell in love with Xe’s voice. And as I began to work on the memoir/novel that investigates my grandmother, Barbara Jean’s death, I kept hearing Xe’s voice in my head. The project is two fold – it is part an investigation into my grandmother’s short life and mysterious death and part a re-imagining of the novel that Barbara Jean wrote and my grandfather burned upon her death. As I worked on Barbara Jean’s novel, it was Xe’s voice I heard as narrator.
So when Xe offered to read the essay on The Rumpus, “What We Lost When We Lost Barbara Jean”, I couldn’t say “YES PLEASE” loud enough.
When I heard Xe’s exquisite reading, it brought me out of my own head and to my knees, especially when she got to the sections that were the novel. It was as if I had never heard myself before and more, Xe made me willing to listen.
Listen. I think you’ll enjoy it too.