Narrator Update – Barbara Benjamin-Creel

Eargasms Narrator Spotlight Update Barbara Benjamin Creel

Since last year, I’ve become a weekend narrator for the New York Times and have fostered fifteen puppies – nine have been adopted and I still have six of them at my house. 

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New Books since last time:

Have Book - Will Travel Audiobook
Mysterious Happenings and Conundrums, Inc. Audiobook

The Crowded Nest Syndrome Audiobook

There is also the controversial second Aunt Tillie book. So many people were unable to make the shift to the new Gus characterization. (you know, the one directed by the author)
Somebody Tell Aunt Tillie We're in Trouble! Audiobook

Lucky commenters will get the new books listed above, 3 winners for each book!! (except Aunt Tillie, only the first three books are up as prizes.)
To enter the giveaway you must comment below with a relevant question or heap fan love on the narrator. Don’t be surprised if you get a reply on the day of the posting, most narrators will be checking in throughout their day. You have the whole month to enter, winners will be drawn on New Year’s Day. You can check in on the beginning post to see all the narrator in order. If you want to enter the Grand Prize Giveaway use the Rafflecopter on that page as well. Good luck and happy listening!!!

21 Responses

  1. nrlymrtl says:

    That’s awesome that you are fostering puppies. Is it your first time or have you been doing this for a while? Mysterious Happenings & Conundrums Inc. looks like a lot of fun. Did you enjoy narrating this one?

    • Thanks for your wonderful comments.
      This past summer was my first time fostering puppies. I happened to see a Facebook post about two 2-day old puppies that had been found in a dumpster. I offered to bottle feed them and ended up fostering them for nearly 12 weeks. They now have wonderful homes as do the other seven I fostered. At the moment I have a litter of five and their mama. In a couple of weeks, they’ll be traveling to Seattle where there is a puppy shortage (!).
      MH&CI was so much fun to narrate! The author was very open to anything, so I was able to really cut loose with the characters.

  2. julied says:

    That must be rewarding but hard work looking after and exercising that many. Wish you all the best with the pups and your marvellous narration

  3. Hi Julie,
    Yes, fostering is both rewarding and exhausting! Fortunately, the puppies exercise themselves. They are still very young (about 8 weeks) and they gambol around and then pass out. I do spend a lot of time mopping up puddles (this is the exhausting part). It’s wonderful to cuddle and nurture them and watch them grow. It’s heartbreaking when they leave. And it’s time consuming. I haven’t worked nearly as much this year as in past years due to the time they take. It’s so worthwhile though. I wouldn’t take back a minute of it.

    Thanks for the good wishes!

  4. Kim BookJunkie says:

    Congratulations on the New York Times gig & being able to part with such cute little puppies… obviously you can’t keep them all but that must be difficult!

    * please note that I am not entering the giveaway, just commenting 🙂

    • The NYT job is the best thing that’s happened to me, professionally, in a long time. I love the work. I get to work with a group of terrific co-narrators and engineers. And I’ve developed a crush on Paul Krugman (who writes columns).

      We came within an inch of keeping one of the pups this time. The one with the white head and blueberry eyes. He takes my breath away.
      I just know that he’ll find a place where there aren’t already two dogs and too many cats. Maybe a couple of kids. This is how I’m able to let them go at all.

      Thanks for writing, Kim.

      • Kim BookJunkie says:

        Awww, you’re definitely doing the right thing by trying to find homes for those little loves! I can’t even imagine how I would be able to handle saying goodbye to them… “blueberry eyes”- so cute!
        Take care Barbara! I hope u have a very happy new year!

  5. Mary C. says:

    How do your pets react to their temporary companions? Our dog loves to play with others, but at the end of the day, he wants to be the only one.

  6. Hi Mary!
    My own dogs are small poodle/Japanese chin mixes. Though I had to have them tested to discover this. They don’t have the poodle look at all.
    They are 6 years old and they are litter-mates. (also rescues, they were dumped outside a dollar store at five weeks) Bertie and Ollie don’t really mind if we have other dogs in the house as long as those others are respectful. They do have to grr at puppies who want to sit on their heads, but this is normal. As long as my guys know that they are loved and ‘special’ and permanent, they are fine. They love to run and tussle with the puppies outside.
    My cats are a different story. I have three who are fine with whomever visits. Laid back and confident. The rest hide as much as possible. It’s not easy on them.

  7. Sophia Rose says:

    I love that you’re fostering the puppies. That takes a big heart and lots of patience.

  8. We love doing it. Chasing puppies keeps you young. 🙂

    Thanks for the kind comment, Sophia.

  9. Susan T. says:

    Oh my gosh those puppies are adorable! It is awesome that you are fostering them and thank you so much for helping animals in need. I wish everyone was so kind! I’m not familiar with the Aunt Tillie series so I’m not sure what the controversy is about but obviously people aren’t happy by a change that the author made. When you narrate a series do you ever get attached to the characters and perturbed when the author writes something you don’t like for them?

  10. Hi Susan,
    Fortunately for me, I’ve never had an author change direction on something I’ve narrated. I did a nice cozy mystery series for Carole B. Shmurak and her characters did some slow evolving, but there was never anything abrupt or objectionable.

    Sometimes a voice/personality is hard to find and sometimes, like magic, it’s right the first time and it just flows of its own accord. It’s easy to get attached to the fun and surprising characters.

    Thanks for asking!


  11. LilMissMolly says:

    Happy holidays! I’m pretty sure I’ve listened a few books of your before about a teacher who gets involved in solving suspicious deaths at the school.

  12. Thanks Miss Molly,
    Yes, those sound like the Susan Lombardi mysteries by Carole B. Shmurak. They are short but fun cozies.

  13. Alexisa says:

    Hi Barbara, I enjoyed listening to the snippets of your narrations and of you reading the New York Times. How do you decide what tone you will use?

    • Hi Alexia! Thanks for taking the time to listen to the samples.

      For the Times articles, do you mean? Or just in general?
      For the books, of course at lot depends on the genre and what the author or publisher request. For the NYT, it will depend on the subject and the gender of the journalist. It can be very odd reading a car review written by a man, but we like a challenge!


  14. Your pups are super cute! While I’ve not listened to you before, Mysterious Happenings sounds like a great listen! I’m adding it to my Audible Wish List 🙂 Happy New Year!

  15. PUPPIES!!!! Gotta love them… you have a big heart to foster them. Some of my animals come from shelters. 1 dog & 5 cats. The last 3 cats were dropped off here. Ok down to my question: Do you like doing the audios for the newspaper better than the books or the books better than the paper? I have to say, you are the first person I seen that narrates a newspaper.

  16. We so DO love the pups, Terri. And good for you for taking in the wander-bys. I have four of those myself.

    Your question is a tough one. I must say, that I do enjoy the camaraderie of the NYT work. I’m on Skype with the project coordinator and my editor/engineer as I do the work. It’s also tough because it’s THE NEW YORK TIMES and they enjoy the $10 words. I spend a lot of time looking up the exact pronunciation of words that I know and use and some that I’ve never heard of in my life. Ditto subjects that I know nothing about. Like the Coachella Festival (for instance).

    For just acting and being creative in general, the audio books are more fun, if less educational.

    Thanks for commenting!