How precious are Your thoughts to me, O LORD ... how vast is the sum of them!

Friday, April 18, 2014

The Many Uses of a Voice Recorder

Somewhere I got the idea that a digital voice recorder would be a great tool for my fiction writing, and for many other projects as well. And I was right!

I’m not Inspector Gadget, but this seemed like something I could handle:


It’s been with me for about two months now. I use it for –
  • Brainstorming The Alice Quest at times when I don’t have my computer, frequently when I’m walking my neighbor’s dogs. It helps me feel actively engaged with my story and productive even when I’m not doing the physical aspect of writing. A good, hard think accomplishes the same result, but this is something concrete. It’s fun to replay my thoughts!
  • Remembering lines, word-for-word, that I come up with during those thinks.
  • Recording interviews with my characters. (So far I’ve only interviewed Amy Brown, The Alice Quest’s protagonist.)
  • Remembering what a friend and I brainstorm during a writing session of our co-story. (That was cool because I got to hear two people’s voices in conversation.)
  • Recording things from the radio. (Don’t worry, no copyright violation!)
  • Playing back my piano pieces so I can hear what I need to work on (or, more rarely, so I can think to myself: that’s me!)

I have lots of idea for other things I can do with it, such as:
  • Record interviews with friends to study their speech patterns for characterization. (I have yet to ask anyone to do this with me; I’m afraid they’ll be self-conscious!) 
  • Record an interview with my 95-year-old grandmother.
  • Read aloud my stories so I can hear how they sound to my ear later.
  • Help myself memorize Bible chapters.
  • Practice different voices and accents.

No doubt I’ll think of even more uses. I can download files from it onto the computer. (Speaking of being self-conscious, I was too shy to download a recording for you today. Besides, I don't quite know how to do that yet!) It’s fun and works really well; the sound is perfectly clear and at last I can comprehend exactly what my own voice is like. Several times when I’ve walked with it and recorded myself, the singing of birds came through, too, and that was just lovely. Hey! That’s another function! Recording birdsongs ….

Have you ever done anything with a voice recorder? Do you think it would be of any help to you?


  1. Actually, we got a voice recorder at Christmas so my sister could practice singing into it. I've also thought about using it to make audio recordings of my stories--not read aloud by me, though. I dislike the sound of my voice when it's recorded. It sounds like it belongs to a squeaky, preppy tween girl. lol

    1. Neat! I don't think my singing would record well at all, but that's a great use for your sister. Audio recordings of your stories would be so cool! It's so odd to one's own voice. : ) I feel a little awkward about hearing my own, but I don't really dislike it. I would love to get more people's voices on there, though!

  2. Ooh, very interesting topic, Kelsey!

    I've sometimes used a voice recorder. It IS fun, though I've not done anything like that in awhile. I once read a large portion of one of my stories aloud with a British accent. (The bad side of this being that I soon grew very sick of that story from hearing my fake self reading it. :P) I haven't done anything writing related besides that though--usually I prefer writing, and just use recording for musical things.

    I've occasionally recorded myself singing a song, mostly if I've composed it myself or if I'm setting a poem to music. I only *record* myself singing, because I'm far too shy about my singing to sing to anyone! Also sometimes there's a melody I remember out of the blue and don't want to forget so I'll hum it, or sometimes I'll dream part of a melody and don't want to lose that. (I can't read music, let alone write it, otherwise I'd probably do that instead. ;)) And very occasionally I'll record myself on pennywhistle or piano.

    As a side-note, I've heard there's software that converts talking to text, which I've always vaguely wanted to look into but never have...

    This post prompted me to go look through some of my old recordings and listen to them--a fun trip down memory lane! Thanks, Kelsey!

    Sarah: I don't much like the sound of my recorded voice either. XD

    1. Ooh, glad you thought so! I love hearing how you use your voice recorder. That's funny about growing sick of your story like that! I must be careful how much I record, because I can see myself doing the same thing ...
      I occasionally come up with a melody in my head, and you're right, they can be so elusive! I never remember any of them. I think I may have had my recorder around once when that happened; I'll have to see if I can find it. I think it's neat that you can do all those musical things! What fun!
      I've heard of that software and it sounds so cool. It must be something to have that!
      Glad to help send you down memory lane. : )