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10 Things to Say "No" to as a Voiceover Artist

As a voiceover artist, you will be asked to do a lot of things. You will be asked to work for free, to do projects that are not in your wheel house, and to take on more work than you can handle. It's important to learn how to say no. In this blog post, we will discuss 10 things that you should say no to as a voiceover artist!

Free Projects

If you're a voice actor, you've probably been asked to do a lot of free projects. And while it's tempting to say yes (after all, any exposure is good exposure, right?), the truth is that voice actors should be paid for their work - just like any other artist. The reason is simple: voice acting is a skilled profession that requires years of training and practice to perfect. Not everyone can do it, which is why voice actors are in high demand. So the next time someone asks you to do a project for free, politely decline and explain that you're a professional voice actor who deserves to be compensated for your work. By doing so, you'll not only be standing up for yourself - you'll also be helping to raise the industry standard and ensure that voice actors are treated with the respect they deserve.

Clients Who Consistently Pay Late

Voiceover artists who work with clients who consistently pay late can find themselves in a tough spot. On one hand, you need the money to pay your bills and keep food on the table. On the other hand, you don't want to be taken advantage of or taken for granted. So what's a voiceover artist to do? The answer is simple: say "no" to clients who don't respect your time and your work. It might not be easy, but it's definitely the right thing to do. After all, your time is valuable, and you deserve to be paid accordingly.

Demanding Clients

It's important to know when to draw the line with demanding clients. There will always be clients who want you to change your voice or who are unhappy with your performance, but you need to be confident in your abilities and stand your ground. If a client is being unreasonable, it's better to walk away from the project than to try to please them and end up with a subpar result. After all, your goal as a voiceover artist is to deliver the best possible performance, not to make every client happy.

Unethical or Unsafe Projects

Voiceover artists are often approached to work on projects that may have dubious ethical implications. In some cases, the client may be seeking a voice that reinforces harmful stereotypes. In other cases, the project itself may be designed to mislead or manipulate the audience. As a voiceover artist, it is important to be aware of the potential implications of your work. If you are approached with an offer to work on an unethical project, it is important to say "no." By taking a stand against unethical projects, you can help to create a more just and equitable industry for all voiceover artists.

The Soul-Crushing Jobs You Dislike Recording

Sometimes you are asked to record projects that you're not particularly fond of. For me, that's long-form projects, like audiobooks, and tricky medical or tech copy. Whatever the case may be, it's important to remember that you are under no obligation to accept every project that comes your way. If you don't like the project or if it doesn't fit your brand, then it's perfectly okay to turn down the project.

Clients Who Complain About Pricing

Being a voice actor is a lot of work. Not only do you have to be able to memorize lines, but you also need to be able to emotional connect with the material you're reading. It's important to enunciate and sell whatever it is you're reading. Whether it's a commercial, an instructional video or an audiobook, as a voice actor, your job is to make sure that the listener is engaged. And that's why it's so important to stand your ground when it comes to pricing. If a client complains about your rate, it's important to remind them of the value you bring to the table. Voice actors are more than just people who talk into a microphone - they're storytellers, and their voice is their most precious commodity. It's important to remember that when negotiating rates with clients. Complaining about prices only devalues your work and makes it harder for voice actors to make a living. So the next time a client tries to lowball you on price, be confident in your worth and say no.

Working After-Hours

As a small business owner, it can be easy to slip into bad habits when it comes to setting boundaries with work. If you're constantly working late into the night, it can be easy to burn out. Not to mention, it can be tough to find time for your loved ones if you're always working. That's why it's important to resist sending those late night emails when you can. Of course, there will be times when you have to work late or on weekends. But if you can help it, try to stick to regular hours so you can have more time for yourself and your family.

Clients Who Take Advantage of Your Time

Like any business, there are always going to be clients who try to take advantage of your time. They might schedule last-minute recording sessions, expect you to re-record lines for free, or request changes that are outside of the scope of the project. It can be tempting to just go along with their requests, but ultimately you need to stick up for yourself. If a client is constantly asking for more than what was agreed upon, it's OK to say "no." After all, you're the voice actor and you should be in control of your own time. So if a client is taking advantage of your time, don't be afraid to stand up for yourself.

Checking Emails on Vacation or While You're Sick

Vacations and sick days are a necessary part of keeping voiceover artists healthy and happy. However, many voiceover artists feel the need to stay connected to their work email even when they're away from the studio. This can be a frustrating experience for both the voiceover artist and the client. Checking email while on vacation or while you're sick can lead to rushed or sloppy recordings, and it can also be a distraction from enjoying time off. If you're a voiceover artist, make sure to disconnect from work email when you're on vacation or sick. You'll be able to enjoy your time off much more, and your clients will appreciate the extra effort.

Pushing Your Vocal Chords Without Proper Precautions

Voiceover artists are often pushed to their limits and asked to do things that strain their vocal chords without proper precautions. This can lead to voice damage and career-ending injuries. As a result, it's important for voiceover artists to know their limitations and to take steps to protect their vocal chords. One way to protect your vocal chords is to warm up before each session. This helps to loosen the muscles and prepare the voice for the strains of voiceover work. Another way is to use proper microphones and recording techniques. This ensures that your voice is properly captures and that you're not putting unnecessary strain on your vocal chords. Finally, it's important to listen to your body and to take breaks when needed. This will help you avoid injury and ensure that you can continue doing voiceover work for many years to come

Questions to Ask Yourself Before Saying "No"

Before you say "no" to a client or a project, it's important to ask yourself a few questions. First, is this something that you want to do? (Are you doing the project to help them?) If not, then you might want to consider saying "no" so you don't end up doing a poor job. Second, do you have the time, energy, and bandwidth to take the project on? Finally, why are you saying "yes" to the request? Ultimately, only you can decide whether or not to say "no." But if you keep these things in mind, you should be able to make the best decision for both you and your clients.

How to Say "No" to Clients

When declining a project, it's important to be professional and courteous. You don't want to burn any bridges, after all. One way to decline a project is to say that you're not available. This is often the best way to handle things, as it doesn't require you to give a specific reason why you're saying "no."

You can also give a brief explanation. For example, you might say that you're not available because you're already booked for another project. Or, you might say that you're not available because the project doesn't fit your schedule.

Avoid over-explaining or apologizing. Simply state that you're not available and thank the client for considering you for the project.

Here are some ways to politely decline a project without burning bridges:

"Thank you for the offer, but I don't think I'm the right person for this project."

"Thank you for thinking of me, but I'm not available for this project."

"I'm sorry, but my schedule is already booked."

"Thank you for the offer, but I'm going to have to decline."

"I appreciate the offer, but I'm not interested."


Saying no is not a bad thing. In fact, it can be quite liberating! When you learn to say no, you are in control of your own voiceover career. You get to choose the projects that you want to work on and the clients that you want to work with. By saying no, you are taking back your power! So, what will you say no to today?


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