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So You Say

Hello Dear Reader,

Have you noticed there has been a lot of talk lately in the book world about narration? Audiobooks and where and how to get them published? It seems like I’ve heard a lot about this lately on podcasts and in newsletters. So I wanted to add my take on the subject.

I am very grateful for my narrator Heather August. I found her through ACX auditions, she was only my second audition and I loved her voice right away. Also, she did an excellent job in pronouncing my unusual sci/fi names. We have completed two books together now and will certainly be doing more.

As I said, I was very lucky to find Heather and we work really well together. I have learned a lot during the process of having an audiobook produced and published and here are my thoughts on the process:

  1. Writing for the spoken word is different than writing for print so somethings may need tweaking to make it sound smoother for the listener. This is especially true if you are an Amazon seller and want to have ‘Whisper Sync’ ability.
  2. Royalty share is an interesting animal. It helps someone just getting started to be able to afford to produce an audiobook, certainly. But, there are some things to keep in mind. First, if you’re on a royalty share you split your forty percent profit with the narrator so you each get twenty percent. Second, you have locked into an exclusive contract with ACX for seven years. You can’t buy it back if you’re on a royal share like you can if you paid the narrator/producer upfront for their work. This wasn’t really a problem in the past as ACX was pretty much the only game in town in your in the U.S. But, in the past year there have been changes in the audiobook world and while ACX and Audible have the majority share, there are other options out there now. Kobo has its own audiobook sales, there are Findaway Voices that allows you to produce your audiobook and publish it on multiple platforms. So, there are things to consider when deciding to produce your book for audio.
  3. Also, consider the editing and market aspects. I’ve learned that it is better to produce the audiobook at the same time as the digital and print versions so that any tweaks that need to be made can be made to all formats before anything is published. You can choose when you make it available for sale. But, I personally find it harder to go back and have a book produced after I have moved on to another project.

These are just some of my thoughts based on my experience. I hope they are helpful to you.

Photo by Thomas Le on Unsplash

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