I didn't honestly think through it too much; I simply let the words explain to me how they should be read. And almost immediately the voice that came out reminded me of Norman Bates in his "mother" mode, with a touch of Dana Carvey's church lady thrown in.
Then, when I recorded it, I found myself taking a quite different approach from that which I normally do. Rather than using my standard routine of recording approximately one paragraph at a time, I instead recorded the entire short story in two or three very long takes. And in the subsequent editing process I was much more hands-off than usual, leaving in some of the nastier, guttural sound effects that emanated from my throat as I passionately frothed my way through the story, in character. I generally consider myself much more of a storyteller than a voice actor, but in the case of this story -- it is as close to "acting" as I've ever gotten in my audiobook career.
Later on I added some visuals to create a video that I posted on YouTube and on Facebook. It was then that I got a nasty surprise in the form of a couple of curious gay-bashing comments from strangers (apparently kids with Facebook accounts). I of course immediately deleted the offensive comments, but it left me with a question: Had I created a work of art that might prove offensive to some people? When I first started recording the story I wasn't honestly sure of the narrator's gender, much less the narrator's sexuality. But here it was being interpreted by some listeners -- negatively interpreted -- as the voice of a gay male. The specific questions that came to mind were -- Could this be interpreted as a kind of gay-bashing artwork in itself? Or, might it be a work that would encourage gay-bashing?
I tend to think and fervently hope that the answer to all of these questions is NO, but I'm curious: What do you think?
Have a listen to the story here and let me know.
The complete audiobook, CLASSIC TALES OF HORROR FOR HALLOWEEN, is available here: http://bit.ly/17czyKG