Hors d'oeuves were coming at us from all angles as well as fancy watermelon drinks. There was an open bar too, so, well, white wine was on my list. As Kirby left to mingle and I went to claim my glass of chardonnay, Barbara and I started to recognize a few more judges coming in. Here's my gripe about the evening. Remember when I mentioned that we had no name tags? Are you a judge? Are you a narrator? Who exactly are you? I didn't have a clue. In that room of several hundred people I knew exactly two, excluding Kirby. Bronson Pinchot of the 80's sitcom "Perfect Strangers" and a DIY show was there, but I wouldn't say I know him. On the other hand, if there had been name tags, I would venture to say that I would have recognized the names of quite a few narrators and reached out to them. Katherine Kellgren, who I recognized from Odyssey award ceremonies, entered in a spectacular eggshell blue and white tapestry dress. Later I recognized MacLeod Andrews roaming around. He was another narrator I recognized from the Odyssey, whom my husband and I both briefly spoke with in 2011 because he was from Louisville, Kentucky, my home state.
"The Audies is the only awards program in the U.S. entirely devoted to recognizing distinction in audiobooks and spoken word entertainment. Drawing over 1,200 entries this year, the competition continues to break records.
Two special awards highlight outstanding achievements: The Distinguished Achievement in Production Award goes to an audiobook that demonstrates excellence in all areas of production, while the Audiobook of the Year recognizes the audiobook that, through quality, innovation, marketing and sales, has had the most significant impact on the industy."
Different narrators introduced each category and the finalists, which the audience could also see listed on a large screen overhead. There are 31 categories including: Non-Fiction, Biography/Memoir, History, Inspirational/Faith-Based Non-Fiction, Business/Educational, Personal Development, Humor, Fiction, Literary Fiction, Classic, Inspirational/Faith-Based Fiction, Short Stories/Collections, Romance, Erotica, Science Fiction, Paranormal, Fantasy, Mystery,Thriller/Suspense, Package Design, Children's Titles for Ages Up to 8, Children's Titles for Ages 8-12, Teens, Audio Drama, Multi-Voiced Performance, Original Work, Narration by the Author of Authors, Solo Naration - Female, Solo Narration - Male, Distinguished Achievement in Production, and Audiobook of the Year.
Now I know there are 31 categories and we don't want to turn this into a 10 hour Academy Awards event with speeches and such, but maybe the winners could come to the front for a photograph below the stage while the next category is getting set up? Maybe I am being silly, but if I were the one to win such an outstanding award, I would like the moment to last a bit longer. And maybe have a photograph.
If you would like to see the list of winners, click the button below:
And before we knew it, it was over and everyone crowded into the three elevators back upstairs for dessert and champaign. More mingling. I ran into Tim Ditlow who I had met at Brilliance Audio in Michigan in 2011. He provided a spectacular tour of the studio and I watched my first recording session of Holly Black narrating one of her books. Otherwise, I still had no idea who anyone was. I will say that the winners were sporting beautiful gold medallions on purple lanyards. Maybe I should have stared at people's chests trying to read what the category was the medal read. Oh well. If should I ever attend again I will prepare by studying the photographs of narrators ahead of time!
Overall, it was a pleasant evening and a memorable one. It makes me look forward to the upcoming Odyssey Awards in Las Vegas on June 30th even more. And I will get to see Kirby again!