All Aliens Like Burgers – Audiobook Release

IT’S HERE! “All Aliens Like Burgers” is the first in the much anticipated TRUXXE TRILOGY by Ruth Wheeler. Published by HIRST BOOKS (click here to buy the book), this exclusive unabridged audiobook edition is read by star of Dr Who, We Are Klang, Tittybangbang and Calendar Girls, Debbie Chazen. Featuring new music from award-winning radio, film & TV composer Jon Nicholls, and produced by multiple-award winning radio & audio director Neil Gardner.

CLICK HERE to visit the Spokenworld Audio site and buy the download

CLICK PLAY to hear a sample


An exciting, funny adventure in space, for late teenage – adult readers.

Young, polite and intelligent Tom Bowler has barely ever ventured out of the small English town where he grew up. So when he applies for a job in a fast food restaurant at a “local” service station during his gap year he is rather surprised to discover that the vacancy is in fact based on Truxxe, a planetoid stationed between local galaxies Triangulum and Andromeda. Hes surprised further still to find himself becoming friends with a purple alien and that he has strange feelings for his android supervisor, Miss Lola. Tom soon discovers that Truxxe has many hidden secrets – just what makes it so special? And why is its terrain so rich and varied that it can be used for fuelling such a diverse variety of intergalactic spacecraft? What are the Glorbian space pirate brothers Schlomm and Hannond plotting? And just what is it that they put in those burgers?

 

 

Reviews of the book (courtesy of Hirst Books)

5 product stars

5 stars – gemma walton – 21 June 2010
really enjoyed the book – it was very descriptive, whilst still being a compelling read. ruth has an amazing imagination and makes the unbelievable sound perfectly plausible and believable. i loved the humour especially with the crystal growing and retrieval – and also the spottooning (which im hoping it wont become a new sport on earth!!)the door is opened really nicely for a sequel with more of toms adventures…. burger ingredients …. alien relations….a home visit with the new found tablets or new found friends…… looking forward to the sequel!!

5 product stars
– david – 21 June 2010
all aliens like burgers is the dabut novel from author ruth wheeler and its a cracker. the basic plot concerns tom bowler who applies for a job at a “local” service stations fast food restaurant – which turns out not to be what or even where it seems. i wont go into any more details and ruin your enjoyment. ruth wheeler has created and enjoyable story with interesting and well fleshed out characters. the narrative moves at a good pace and makes an ideal read for anyone, like me, who enjoys a good science fiction novel with a twist.i was lucky enough to meet the author at a local book signing and found her to be charming and very down to earth. ruth also told me she is working on a sequal to this book. i for one, will be waiting with eager anticipation for more adventures of tom bowler.

5 product stars
Five Star Read – Ed – 07 September 2010
A most enjoyable debut novel from ruth wheeler in which she chronicles the mis-adventures of young tom bowler who is a fish out of water in his new job at a galactic burger bar ! Fast moving,funny and imaginative,this is highly recommended to all fans of douglas adams and comedic sci-fi.

4 product stars
All Alians like burgers – A robinson – 17 January 2011
Really enjoyed this book I bought it for my youngest son but landed up reading it myself and could’nt put it down – very funny well worth the read

4 product stars
burgers in space! – mike cook – 17 June 2010
this is a light-hearted story of a teenager taking up a job in a less than usual location. the story takes us on a journey of discovery for a young man leaving home, with some excellent imagery. includes one of my favourite one-line observations of recent years. one to sink your teeth into for a little light entertainment.

4 product stars
– victoria kahl – 21 June 2010
a real fish-out of water story, its interesting to think how i would cope with a situation like this. most of the time the main character accepts what he sees and gets on with things, i think this is because he is still a teenager and things roll off him!amongst the pure sci-fi there are plenty of comedy moments and even a sprinkling of romance. i look forward to the rest of the series and to finding out where toms adventures will take him.

 

The BIG PAIR Podcast – Ep 6 – Debbie Does Audio!

Another in our occassional series of specials…this episode, Neil Gardner chats one-on-one with actress, comedienne and star of “Voyage of the Damned”, Debbie Chazen, about audiobooks, We Are Klang, Calendar Girls, Dr Who and fighting breast cancer.

PLUS…some sneak audio peaks at some of the summer releases from Spokenworld Audio, the new name in audiobooks and audio productions online.

Debbie as Foon van Hoff (c)BBC

Editing Doctor Who – an audio adventure!

Hornets' Nest - The Circus of Doom by Paul Magrs

The Circus of Doom (c)BBC

What a job, eh?  Editing together the latest audio adventures of the fourth Doctor, Tom Baker.  It is, I am happy to admit, a childhood dream come true!  I’ve been a Doctor Who fan since, well, since forever.  And Tom was/is MY Doctor.  My first experience of Doctor Who was in the mid to late 1970s and there he was, Tom “The Doctor” Baker…larger than life, with scarf-a-flappin, a mile-wide smile and a manic approach to being a hero.  According to my mum, I was watching Doctor Who on a Saturday evening from the age of 2…no wonder Tom Baker has such a power over my childhood memories!

As I grew up, I always knew that I wanted to work in radio and what is now referred to as audio.  And I always knew I wanted to make science fiction.  But to be making Doctor Who…and Tom Baker Doctor Who?!  Wow wow wow!

So what is it I am doing?  A few people have asked what my role actually is in the Hornets’ Nest production crew?  First off, the producer/director is the uber-talented  Kate Thomas from BBC Audiobooks.  Kate has made pretty much all of the many, many BBC Audio Dr Who audio adventures…she is a goddess of Doctor Who.  So I’m not the producer or director (unusual for me nowadays!). I certainly didn’t write it or script edit it.  The writer is the mighty Paul Magrs, a man with much Doctor Who writing experience! I’ve done my fair share of writing for radio over the years, and will continue to do so, but I don’t think I’ll ever be good enough to write for Doctor Who!  Simon Willey and Wolfgang were the recording engineers for the drama scenes, so again, that’s not my job (also unusual for me, as I have recorded most things I produce!). So what the heck is it I am doing?

In the voice-over studio

In the voice-over studio

Part of my job was to bring my experience of BBC Radio drama directing/producing…in this role I advised on various aspects of the series, organised recording studios and engineers and ensured all the audio was recorded exactly as would be required to deliver the end result.

As part of this process, I also engineered the recording sessions with Tom and Richard Franklin, these were done in a radio studio rather than a drama studio (Electric Airwaves if you are interested – we used Motivation Sound Studios for the drama sessions).

The Stuff of Nightmares

The Stuff of Nightmares (c)BBC

Once everything was recorded my BIG job began.  It is my role to edit everything together, much like a film editor.  I have all the raw audio, and working alongside my script notes, I piece together each episode, using the best takes, making sure everything balances in terms of pace and style.  Once this is done I then layer in the music (supplied by the BBC), re-time everything to fit what the composer has in mind, and re-balance the volumes.  Finally I go back through the whole episode and add in sound effects (such as the wonderful original 1970s BBC Tardis SFX) and atmospheres.  With these three processes finished I have to listen through a few more times to check there are no mistakes, the pacing is right, the volumes are correct, the FX are in the right place, etc…  At this stage I send the episode to Kate at the BBC, and she, along with the commissioning editor Michael Stevens, listen through and send back a list of small changes they think need to be made.

Kate, Tom, me and Richard

Kate, Tom, me and Richard

You might think I would be annoyed by this short list of changes – after all, I’ve done all this hard work (something like 36 hours per ep) and these two people tell me to make alterations!  But actually it is a very useful and much appreciated stage – being so close to the audio for so long, I find that I end up missing a few things.  Plus, my opinion of pacing and style, may not suit others, and so Kate and Michael play the part of ‘first listeners’.  It is a vital and very positive stage of the production.

So, I take these notes, work through the episode to make the changes, and then master the episode.  Mastering pulls all the many audio files together into one single broadcast quality wav file.  At this point I listen through on headphones to check nothing has gone awry during the mastering process.  If everything is OK, I send an mp3 file of the episode to Kate for her to sign off on.  Once that is done I send a DATA CD and AUDIO CD of the episode to the chaps at BBC Audiobooks in Bath…they then send it through their duplication and distribution system and eventually the episode turns up as a CD and download all over the world – huzzah!

Mastering A DW Episode

Mastering A DW Episode

I’ve done this 3 times so far – ep 1 “The Stuff of Nightmares” is in the shops now; ep 2 “The Dead Shoes” comes out at the start of October; ep 3 “The Circus of Doom” is released along with ep 4 at the start of November.  Ep 5 comes out at the start of December – all in time for Xmas 🙂

Today I finished all the stages of ep 3 – so the master discs head off in the post tomorrow.  Ep 4 is already with Kate & co for notes, so not much left to do with that one.  Just ep 5 now needs to be built and edited…so I am very nearly there.  This production started back in Feb/March and is coming to a close in Oct…6 months for 5 CDs, not a terrible amount of time at all.

Tom does some 'acting'!

Tom does some 'acting'!

And through it all I’ve been getting to edit Doctor Who, Tom Baker, the fourth Doctor.  I’ve loved this job.  It’s been a dream come true, and one I’ve been able to share with friends all around the world through the blog and Twitter and Facebook.  For those of us who grew up with Tom as the Doctor, having him return has been a very special time.  Whether you enjoy the series or not, I hope you’ll agree that Tom coming back is a great thing.  Where he goes next, what he does next, whether it be more with the BBC or with someone else, I think we can all agree that Tom is a legend and a one-off and for me, he still exerts a ridiculous amount of control over my imagination…what a joy it has been working with him.

I just wish I could share with you the out-takes 🙂

The Dead Shoes

The Dead Shoes (c)BBC

“Doctor Who: Hornets’ Nest” is available via the BBC Shop, Amazon, Play, iTunes and other retailers.  There are 5 CDs in the series.

Some great places to visit:

Paul Magrs blog

BBC Shop

Tom Baker’s new website

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