I work as a voice writer. Will light/low whispering for long periods of time on a regular/daily basis harm my vocal cords? How can I learn to talk just above a whisper or with minimal vocal cord vibration?
Yes — whispering IS very hard on the voice. To speak lightly, you need to use as little air as possible. This does NOT mean tightening or gripping the voice. It means having very strong, expanded ribs so that there is no air pushing against the voice as you speak. You do not have to inhale as full a breath when you are speaking quietly, and having less air to hold back from the sound will make it easier. Speaking on a lower pitch will also make the voice less audible. Also, using less resonance will help. Make an “NG” hum like at the end of the word “sing” or an “OOH” vowel. Feel how these sounds are contained at the back of the mouth and throat. They do not come forward and have brilliance the way an “M” or nasty “a” like in the word “cat” would have. Speaking in this inside place will also make the voice less audible.