• Shae Bryant

The Origins of "The Veiled Monarch"

What is an "Audio Drama"? Think of it as an old-school radio program beefed up with today's technology. It's a narrative story with (usually) a full cast of voice actors, sound effects and music that transports the listener into the world the writer created. Most audio dramas are released in podcast form, but some are released as audio books. Neil Gaiman's "Sandman" is currently available on Audible as a full cast audio book, but it is really an audio drama adaptation of the comic.

There are a few audio dramas that are backed by large studios, or done by larger production companies. Many of them are done the way I did it. A small team creates, edits and releases the episodes to the public. Most of us made no money out of it. We just really enjoyed creating and telling a story.

This is how "The Veiled Monarch" began. I had the story in my mind, but I didn't have the confidence to sit and write a novel. This would make a great movie or series, I thought to myself. I knew there was no way I could break into that industry. The option I found was in audio dramas. I could create these stories using only spoken word, music, and sounds to move the listener. Considering how much I adore music, and I understand how sound alone can move someone to tears, I thought the idea was perfect.

We had a script, a show, a very talented cast of voice actors, and a small audience. It wasn't enough for me. I would love to tell you it was some sort of large epiphany where I said to myself, "I'm going to write a novel!", but that was not the case. My grand plan was to write and release the novels alongside the audio drama, and create a way for people to transport themselves into the story they enjoyed reading. That never happened.

The audio drama itself was waning before COVID-19 hit the United States. Once the virus was in full swing here in North America, it influenced several industries. That included podcasts.

I was approaching burn out before COVID affected the podcasters of the world. If I were honest, I hit the burn out phase long before March 2020. I spent hours each week editing, purchasing sound effects, organizing actors and putting out a polished product. Along with that, I was working on the novels and still doing freelance voice over work. Something had to give.

It was the audio dramas that got the axe. Again, there are several reasons for it, and I won't go into the reasons right now. I knew these novels would reach more people, and these are stories I want to share with as many people as possible! I had and have my work cut out for me, but I will always remember the origins of "The Veiled Monarch." It all started with a story, an outline, and a badly written script.

If you take an interest in audio dramas, the archives are available on The Veiled Monarch's website!

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© 2018 - 2021 by Shae Bryant.