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Are Audiobooks Worth The Effort?

Or, Why I Decided to Create an Audiobook Version of Spell of Summoning

Converting my first novel in the Dark Caster Series into an audiobook made me more nervous and way more scared than publishing it in its current digital form. My inner pessimist went wild:

What if it sounds awful?

What if the voice actor sucks?

What if it doesn’t sell well and then I look like a loser to my producing partner?

I'm a bit of a worrier.
I’m a bit of a worrier.

Before I lost any more sleep, I logged onto iTunes and downloaded my first audiobook–Relentless Seduction–a paranormal romance by Jillian Burns. I listened to it in the car on my iPad, and I loved it! My new favorite thing to do on road trips is listening to audiobooks.

ACX.com, an Amazon company, is a user friendly one stop shop for uploading your novel and hiring a producer to create the audio version. The technical, contract style language made me a little hesitant to move forward, but I agreed to the site’s terms and opened Spell of Summoning as a new project. I could have waited for a producer to find me and offer to record my novel, but I’m impatient, so I listened to pre-recorded auditions. After some trial and error I decided I wanted a young woman with a general American accent and an engaging voice that I could happily listen to for hours on end.

I was lucky to find a talented young actress, Elizabeth Siedt, right away who agreed to produce the audiobook.

Unlike traditional “books on tape,” there were no upfront costs. Similar to publishing your digital book with Amazon, you and the producer receive a percentage of the sales in exchange for selling the audiobook exclusively at Audible.com, iTunes, and Amazon.com.

The answer to my initial question–Are audiobooks worth the effort?–is yes!

<3 Anna

Published inPublishingSpell of Summoning

11 Comments

  1. This is a quality, well-written article with engaging content full of original, distinctive and tangible views. Much of this content falls in line with my own views. Thank you for sharing your knowledge this way.

    • Anna Abner Anna Abner

      I appreciate your feedback 🙂

    • Anna Abner Anna Abner

      🙂

    • Anna Abner Anna Abner

      You’re very welcome! 🙂

    • Anna Abner Anna Abner

      I appreciate you stopping by!

  2. Wow, and I just hired a person on Elance ($200+) to do recording in several voices (each book about 28-minutes). Did I make a mistake by paying instead of going to iTunes?

    Your post is spot-on…

    • Anna Abner Anna Abner

      Bill, I’m not familiar with Elance, but I was very happy with my ACX experience. A big plus for me was that there were no upfront costs and I received a high quality audiobook that ACX automatically links to my Amazon ebook and uploads to iTunes for me. The only issue I had was my second audiobook took about 3 months for ACX to approve and publish (compared to about 3 days with the first book), but it may have been that they were inundated with new audiobooks and the processing time was increased between the first and second books.

      FYI, there are no upfront costs, but I split all royalties with my voice talent. So, for an audiobook that sells for about $16 my part of the royalty is about $4.

      Good luck!

  3. Thanks Anna, that is extremely helpful.

    Odd your second book took 100x longer than your first.

    Thanks for reaching out.

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