Hello SErs! It’s Monday again … but not to despair: Christmas is only a WEEK away!!! (Ahem. Sorry.) Right, back to today’s post … after making so much noise, let’s take a look at what options us authors have to do just that very thing — get our voices out there.
Until recently, the only avenue I knew of to turn my books into audio books was Audible. Unfortunately, you cannot set your price, and they are so expensive for listeners to use. I could go on and on about what I don’t like about Audible; however, I shall refrain.
Right off the bat, I couldn’t afford for someone to narrate for me. I just didn’t have that kind of cash … it’s pricey. So, I set about buying my own recording kit: microphone, sound-absorbing walls (two sets to make a tiny cubicle!), and audio editing software. Okay, that all cost a pretty penny still, but at least it didn’t ramp up into the thousands.
Then I had to learn all there was to learn about reading aloud and editing the result, as well as the standards and requirements that Audible demanded. Finally, at long last, I got one of my books on there! I started with the shortest one I had: Slices of Soul. After an initial flurry when it hit the virtual shelves, it fell into oblivion among the many other gazillions of audio books on there.
With Audible, I could run no promos. Nor could I tweak the price. I couldn’t even give away a bunch of free copies. What a let down. I didn’t have the heart right then to put in all that work (and it was a LOT of work) to turn another of my books into audio, especially as they are all significantly longer than that poetry book.
Then, lo and behold, I came across a new online company for selling audiobooks. One that didn’t have all those strict requirements and meant that I could upload pretty much whatever I wanted.
The company is Audiopub, and they work via apps from the App Store and Google Play Store. Readers/listeners can find your book on there and listen to samples. As the author/narrator, you have the option to keep it all free or set a pay wall at a certain chapter.
While you can simply speak into your device microphone (smartphone, iPad, etc.), I personally cannot live with the poor quality that that puts out. So, I have begun recording my longest book (The Glade) using all the set up I bought for Audible. That way, I get the best of both worlds. I get my book into audio, don’t have all that fuss, and can decide how much of my book folks can listen to before they have to pay. I still can’t set the price point, however, as Audiopub sets a standard fee of $2.99 per book once that pay wall is hit. To me, though, that seems like a more than reasonable price for a book, and isn’t extortionate and convoluted like Audible can seem.
So, what does it all cost?
Not until you sell a book.
Every Audiopub book is either free or sells at $2.99.
If you selected Paywall in Setup for your story, the reader will be charged $2.99.
The App Store or Play Store will take 30%. Audiopub will take 10%. And you will
Audiopub makes payments once per month via Paypal.
The big drawback that I have found is that I have no way of tracking sales or knowing when I’ve made a sale. I did contact them, and they said that they had overlooked that aspect and would address it, probably within the week. That was a couple of months ago now, and still nothing has changed on the author dashboard. So, we’ll see where that one goes.
The big positive is that you don’t have to worry about every single tiny pop and click on your audio. Also, you can reach a huge audience. Your book is affordable (or free). And there’s no outlay at the beginning (other than any kit you might want to buy). Your royalty percentage is much higher than you get with Audible.
Here, I have to make a disclaimer that I am in no way an affiliate of Audiopub and gain no benefit whatsoever from posting about them. I simply want to share something I have found useful.
Have any of you come across any similar ventures/avenues for audiobooks? What has been your experience? Have you thought of going the audio book route before? I’d be delighted to hear your thoughts.
Have a great week and thanks for stopping by!