Two years ago, we published an article in Storizen, ‘Death of a Reader‘. As the literature is taking a new turn with the new ways of storytelling, audiobooks have come a long way.
The one and the foremost reason for publishing your book in an audiobook format is to increase the reach of the book. Since the launch of the audiobooks, there has been a significant increase in the audiobooks audience across the world.
Why produce audiobooks?
As said earlier, one of the most important reasons for publishing an audiobook that is also compelling is to reach an untapped audience. For many years, the brighter side in the publishing industry has been the sale of audiobooks. People are keen on listening more than reading. This shift in behavior has led audiobooks to be in high demand.
Authors today are inclined towards publishing their audiobooks besides the written novel to reach the entirely new audience which according to their thoughts was nonexistent.
Self Publishing Audiobooks for traditional publishers
The era of self-publishing had taken traditional publishing for a ride – there are lesser wait times, authors don’t need to go through the pain of submitting their manuscripts to numerous publishing houses and waiting for years to get your book out. In the digital publishing industry, self-publishing has relieved this pain for authors.
They can straightaway publish their book whenever they are ready with one click and ready to sell it. The hassle of marketing the book is still there. Over the years, the demand for self-publishing has risen, especially in the audiobooks section.
Another best thing about self-publishing your book is that the authors get the revenue from the sale of the book coming directly to them. They also get to choose the timing of publication, formats – e-books, hardcover, paperback, audiobook, enhanced e-book.
The authors choose the self-publishing way because they tried with the agents and traditional publishers but did not get the desired outcomes.
Whatever the goal may be, you must aim to publish a good audiobook. If you don’t do that, of course, your sales and reputation will suffer a blow!
Making your audiobook ain’t be easy also. You may have to struggle to find the narrator, the right distribution channel, the platforms, and not to be forgotten, a marketing plan for promoting your audiobooks so it reaches the right audience.
Recording it yourself vs Hiring a Narrator/Producer
Recording your audiobook can be a daunting task. It feels like you are into the process of writing that book again, from scratch!
The amount of time spent in retakes, breaks, editing the work, listening to the book, again and again, to make sure that it’s done perfectly can take helluva of your time and energy.
If you decide to go further step and make that investment of hiring the narrator or producer to narrate your book, you can definitely save some time out there for sure. But it can be an expensive affair.
Moreover, take a look at your accent and the listeners who are going to actually listen to your audiobooks. Will they be able to get your accent? Maybe they get yours but what if they don’t understand the narrator’s accent? So you need to check this before hiring the narrator for your audiobook.
One aspect of the audiobooks industry is the genre of the book that is being narrated. Nonfiction, self-help books can be easy to narrate than fiction ones, especially thrillers and mystery novels. The feel of the characters, the plot are somewhat difficult to create than its nonfiction, self-help book counterpart.
It usually takes about five to ten minutes to record about 1000 words, depending on how fast you can speak. But that doesn’t make it the final version. There is more time that goes into the editing.
Narrating a book is not a small or quick project. You have to shell out some time for the task, read each chapter of the book aloud, narrate each chapter, putting life into it then work with an audio engineer or yourself, editing the audios. Once this is completed, you will have to check the final audio file for errors, meaning you have to listen to that again from the beginning.
There is also a possibility that you may have to re-record an entire chapter, so allow some contingencies while recording your audiobook.
Make sure to get the right equipment
Making sure that the audiobook you are producing is of good quality, the equipment needed to record should also be of top quality. The microphone, the headphones which you would be using to record and listen should be of top quality.
We recommend using premium quality microphone by Blue Yeti. The positive side of this microphone is that they are USB compatible, so you can connect to any PC or any sound system having a USB port (almost all of them are coming with an USB port. in addition to that, this mic has 3 Condenser Capsules, 4 Pickup Patterns,Headphone Output & Volume Control, Mic Gain Control, and it’s Plug & Play, so no additional software installation required!
When it comes to headphones, I recommend using the one from Sony. Though it might seem costly, but consider it as a onetime investment. I personally use Sony MDR-7506, and I would recommend you if you are really serious about your audiobook narration and editing.
Coming to editing the audiobook, you may also have to invest in some editing software to keep the things smooth. You can use Reaper. Other options include Garage Band and Audacity (both free).
Noise cancellation is also an important aspect when it comes to recording an audiobook, that’s why having the right set of equipment is an essential element to keep in mind.
So the best way is to narrate the chapters of your book and see if there are any additional, unwanted sounds like of the traffic, electric and electronic devices like Fan, AC etc so it does not hamper the quality of your audiobook.
Final Touches and Release
You have narrated the audiobook, the editing is done. Now it’s time to finally proof your audiobook and make sure that it’s ready for the market.
Put your headphones on, start listening your chapters and side by side keep marking or noting down the areas where there is a scope for improvement.
Give the audio file the final touch up needed and publish the audiobook so that it is available for the audience. Spread the word among your readers, fans, friends and encourage them to check out the audiobook and share the feedback!
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