Every once in a while we, as authors, have to do this. We spend countless hours alone with a computer and so we get excited when good things happen and we like to share them. I have been struggling for nearly five months to get my first audio book completed and released. Now it's time to let the world know.
I decided to go the independent route and have it done in a studio with a professional narrator. It seemed like a good idea at the time. I'm not complaining about that choice. In fact, it was a wonderful experience. I sat for several days listening to the the narrator as she read and stopping her when necessary to fix things. I learned a lot and gained a new respect for narrators. The whole process was totally fascinating.
After meeting every day in the studio from early morning to late night, the narrator left and I stayed with the engineer to finish it up. Then I joined my family for Thanksgiving dinner, thrilled with what we had accomplished.
However, when I submitted it to ACX (Amazon's audio division) they rejected it because it wasn't mastered quite right. At that time I had no idea what that really meant. It took me another four months to get the audio mastered correctly and re-submitted to ACX. Some of the time delay was just bad luck. (The original engineer was hospitalized and out of commission for some time.) ACX said they would review it and get back to me. I was told the process would take ten days to two weeks. Three weeks later, I was about to call back to see if I needed to go back to the drawing board, when I discovered it had been released for two days and I had already sold quite a few copies. Yay!
So, today my first book, The Advocate, is available on Amazon, Audible, and iTunes. Now I have the other four books in production, although I have chosen to take a different route this time for many reasons.
Author of The Advocate series
First, congratulations! Audiobooks are an exciting new market, and I'm glad to hear yours is selling well.ReplyDelete
I'm also curious to know what the problem was with the first version. I'm considering a new narrator for my second Dallas book—because most of the POV characters are women this time—and I want to make sure we get it right.
Because I did the first one outside of ACX I ran into problems with the studio. Some of it couldn't be helped, but some of it could have been prevented. I really like the narrator I used. None of the problems I had would be an issue using ACX narrators. I'm working with two right now and both have been terrific.Delete
Thanks for sharing your experience. I also used ACX, but I opted for the "I don't want to invest a dime" approach and found narrators who'd work for the royalty split. They both had professional recording studios (a must), and the books went through without a hitch. I'm glad your book made it (and glad I didn't have to work so hard!)ReplyDelete
That's what I have done with the last 4, Terry. So far, no problems.Delete
Wahoo! Congratulations! I'm excited to hear more as you figure out the sales and marketing pieces for audiobooks!ReplyDelete
THE MISSINGS was supposed to be finished last October. I just received an email that it is now ready for me to listen to in its entirety for approval. I went through ACX, found a wonderful narrator/producer, and then he began getting paying voice-over gigs, got a part in Les Miserables, and then got sick. In the interim, his wife and I have become online friends—so I guess it's all good. I'll know in the next day or so after I have a chance to listen...
I won't use a narrator unless they are willing to send me chapter by chapter. There's just too much if you try to do it all in one large piece. Besides, if you catch things early, such as the voice for a particular character, you can fix it before the whole book is done with a voice you don't like.Delete
We did it bits and pieces. I'm fairly confident he's made all of the minor corrections I wanted. His voices were terrific. Just some pronunciations. I'll be digging in tomorrow with any luck...ReplyDelete
Thanks for sharing your experiences everyone! ACX is currently not available this side of the pond and I am still debating whether to go the audiobooks way when it does eventually come to Europe.ReplyDelete