I spend entirely too much time on the internet, but when it pays off, it pays off big. I stumbled upon a virtual boyfriend audio clip on YouTube today. (ASMR Roleplay: I’ll be your muse [Comfort for Artist’s . . . . 8:32)
It’s a ten-minute romantic interaction with a boyfriend. I find it a fascinating model, because it’s very direct and intimate with the listener (second person POV comes in handy for once, babies!), yet it’s got a distinct narrative. It’s almost like an audio book.
This particular story has some cringe in the beginning – I find the boyfriend too bossy and condescending (although, I feel some women and men might find him very caring and “doing it for my own good”). As the story goes along, though, the boyfriend is encouraging (the listener plays the part of an artist with creative blockage, and the boyfriend offers to be their muse), and there is a lovely part where he reminisces about “our” plans together.
Quite honestly, when I have writing blocks (which is ALL THE GODDAMN TIME), I would prefer NOT to be encouraged. It makes me feel guilty. However, when it’s a fantasy boy, and not a real person, it makes a lot of difference. And . . . if I wrote a story about a perfect lover who said and did all the right things, it might be quite comforting. More importantly, it could be comforting and fun for other people, as well.
I’d be very interested in hearing what you think about this format – the ten-minute short story, read aloud and then distributed through 21st century technology. Does it spark any ideas? Or would you just rather read a well-loved romance novel again for the umpteenth time?
(Nothing wrong with reading a well-loved romance novel again for the umpteenth time – I do it several times a year. It’s just that I’m so pinched for time lately that if I could find the niche “YouTube Boyfriend” that massaged all my buttons, and did it in ten minutes flat, I’d be ecstatic.)
I get this. I can see how a ten-minute audio story would be right up someone’s alley—not my alley, but for people who like audio books, this format might be just the ticket. It’s a nice, short shot of fiction when you need it, it’s got a little tension, I imagine it’s got a happy ending, it could spur some creativity or just be a nice break in the day. I liked this guy’s voice, and I thought the structure of hearing just his side was interesting, but I’m just not an audiophile and I stopped listening a couple of minutes in. Give me that romance novel for the umpteenth time! But I get this.
Everything Kay said! It all depends on one’s personal catnip. Mine’s the written word, for the first time or the umpteenth, but I can imagine that some people would get a kick out of this.
What fascinates me is that it is a guided meditation format. “You are there” I think is the mindset you are supposed to be in, and to be honest, that’s what we are trying for with a good novel — we want the readers to immerse themselves in our words and lose themselves in the story.
(-: The audience for this particular piece is not me, either. I’m older, and I tend to read that concern “Boyfriend” has as nagging, not as loving kindness. But . . . if that’s the case, what kind of Boyfriend Guided Meditation *would* be my cup of tea? I’ve been wrestling with it all weekend.
Intriguing format! My last quarter newsletter included a scene I’d cut from The Demon Always Wins that i loved but didn’t fit the greater arc of the story. Trying to think if I know anyone with a great speaking voice who might be willing to read it.
Unlike Kay and Jilly, I love audio format, although I only listen to audiobooks when I’m traveling because I can read far faster than I can listen and I can easily re-scan a couple of paragraphs or pages when I lose focus–harder to do with audiobooks.
You could put an ad in the local college newspaper and see if you get anyone from the drama department. I don’t know the ins-and-outs — what’s a fair wage? Is there a union that covers this kind of work? It could be a great promotion for the book, and reach a wider audience who is willing to commit to ten minutes of listening.