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How Do I Become a Voice Writer?

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  • Written By: T. L. Childree
  • Edited By: E. E. Hubbard
  • Last Modified Date: 09 November 2016
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Voice writers make a word-for-word recording of dialogue in order to preserve it in written form. In order to become a voice writer, you must be able to listen and speak at the same time and have a good understanding of speech-to-text computer software. You will also need a certain amount of specialized formal training to pursue this career. Some form of professional certification may also be required to become a voice writer. Employment can usually be found as a court reporter, closed-captioning writer, or translator for the hearing-impaired.

A voice writer speaks into a microphone-equipped mask while listening to other speakers. In order to succeed at this profession, you must be able to listen to a conversation and simultaneously repeat it word-for-word into a microphone. Although this skill is usually developed over a period of time, some individuals may find the task too difficult. The recordings made by these professionals must be highly accurate and excellent listening skills are required. You will also need to have a good understanding of specialized, speech-to-text computer software to convert voice recordings to written transcripts.

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A certain amount of specialized training is usually needed to become a voice writer. A wide variety of community colleges and technical institutes offer training courses designed specifically for this profession, which may be acquired through traditional in-person classes or online courses. If you plan to work in the United States, you may want to enroll in a school accredited by the National Verbatim Reporters Association (NVRA) to be eligible for professional certification. A complete list of approved learning institutions is available at the association’s website.

Many regional governments require professional licensing before you can become a voice writer for a court of law. Some employers will accept professional certification in place of a regional license. The NVRA offers three different certifications to qualified candidates who successfully complete a written knowledge and skills examination. These professional designations are known as Real-Time Verbatim Reporter (RVR), Certified Verbatim Reporter (CVR), and Certificate of Merit (CM). Specific knowledge and skill requirements for these certifications can be found at the NVRA website and continuing education courses are needed for periodic recertification.

After you become a voice writer, employment can usually be found in several different fields. The majority of these professionals are employed as court reporters or legal transcribers, but work is also available in the entertainment industry. Voice writers are often utilized to provide closed captioning and subtitles for motion pictures and television broadcasts. You may also find employment as a translator for hearing-impaired individuals.

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