The Next Dark Star

What is “The Next Dark Star” ?

We’re on a mission to find the next great voices in audiobooks.

Is that YOU?

Join the quest, and show us that you have what it takes to tell the stories our listeners love to hear.

Tackle real-world audiobook narrator challenges to make it to the next round.

But don’t worry – Make it past the first challenge, and we’ll bring in Rock Star mentors to help you with the rest of your challenges!

Win or lose – this experience WILL level your narration game up

Why are we doing this competition?

Stories are best told by human voices.

In a world where Artificial Intelligence is replacing so many aspects of the human experience, there is no substitute for a beautiful story performed by a real person.

My name is Troy Duran. 

As a fellow narrator and an audiobook producer, nothing makes me happier than finding and casting a great new voice. 

My goal with The Next Dark Star is to help aspiring narrators find a place in this amazing world.


TWO Grand Prize Winners receive:

  • Starring roles in a live performance alongside Sebastian York, Tara Langella, and Lucas Webley of a novella being written by J.T. Geissinger at Dark Star ‘24 
  • A contract to be cast in a future J.T. Geissinger project produced by Dark Star Romance 
  • Attendance as a signing narrator at Dark Star ‘24, table fee comped
  • Hotel accommodations at the Sheraton New Orleans, where Dark Star ’24 is being held 
  • Recording set-up: state of the art microphone and recording interface 


The Next Dark Star contest will run for about 13 weeks, from April 1st until early July, 2024.  The general structure and approximate timeline is below:

  • Initial Submissions  ~2 Weeks 
  • Meet Your Top 20 ~2 weeks 
  • Challenge #1 – eliminate 5, down to Top 15  ~2 weeks 
  • Challenge #2 – eliminate 4, down to Top 10 ~2 weeks 
  • Challenge #3 – eliminate 4, down to Top 6 ~2 weeks 
  • Challenge #4 – eliminate 2, down to Top 4 ~2 weeks 
  • LIVE FINALE – the Top 4 read live to determine our NEXT DARK STARS! 


  • You must be 18 or over to enter
  • No narration experience necessary 
  • If you are a working narrator, you must have 20 books or less published as a narrator as of April 1, 2024. 
  • Must have some level of tech/equipment to provide professional sounding audio 
  • Must commit to: 
    • Participating in challenges. The challenges will start around the beginning of May and conclude in early July. Eliminations will occur with each challenge. Some challenges will include attending recorded mentoring sessions with acclaimed Narrators or Authors. Clips from mentoring sessions may be used for promotional material for the contest and to promote YOU. 
    • Posting your Challenge Submissions on your TikTok; and tagging @DarkStarCon, AND #TheNextDarkStar24, #DarkStarCon,  
  • Should you win, you must be available to attend Dark Star ‘24 in New Orleans Aug 29- Sept 1, to perform the Novella & be at signings. 
  • When you sign up, you agree that Dark Star can use your name/videos/images for promotional material 

Ready to join the fun?? Here's how to do your initial submission!

1) SIGN UP for The Next Dark Star Contest HERE

2) In 2 minutes or less, tell us in a TikTok video why you should be the next Dark Star audiobook narrator. Make it fun and creative – but most importantly – make it YOU!

       Here’s what we want to know:

  • Who you are  
  • Why you should be the Next Dark Star
  • What’s unique about you 
  • What excites you about narrating 
  • Other than attending Dark Star, what is one thing you really want to do when in New Orleans?  

3) Post your video on TikTok by midnight April 14, 2024, and don’t forget to tag us with the following tags so we don’t miss your submission! 

@DarkStarCon, #TheNextDarkStar24, #DarkStarCon 

**In this step of the process, just have fun! But don’t forget that we are looking for VOICES, so be sure to showcase your voice along with your winning personality!**

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