Talking about audiobooks today and giving away one copy of the WRECK OF THE NEBULA DREAM audiobook to a randomly selected commenter.
Last year I had the wonderful experience of making an audiobook version of my award winning WRECK OF THE NEBULA DREAM with Actor/Narrator Michael Riffle. I've written extensively about the process in a series of posts on my own blog. You can find the first post here which links to the others, if you're interested.
Briefly, I went through Audiobook Creation Exchange (ACX), which is a division of Audible, so I can only speak to that experience. ACX is wonderfully set up to keep things simple for the author, the actor and the producer, which I appreciated. For my first audiobook I couldn't afford to pay an hourly rate (usually between $200-$400 per "finished hour" - my book runs about 9 hours). ACX offers a contract vehicle whereby author and actor split the royalties 50/50 and no money is paid up front. Of course if it turns out you've created the Harry Potter or 50 Shades of audiobooks and have a runaway hit, your actor will become very wealthy over the life of the distribution contract! Now WRECK may be an Amazon best seller and award winning, but I wasn't too concerned that I might be signing away millions. (And I appreciate working with Michael so much I might not have minded anyway LOL.)
At first though, I wasn't getting very many quality auditions. Then ACX put my book into their stipend program, where they pay $1500.00 to the actor when the book is completed. I paid nothing, just split future royalties as they come in. Then I got numerous auditions and was fortunate enough to find Michael, who embodied my special forces hero of the future perfectly.
Unless you're a trained actor as well as an author, don't read your own book! First of all, reading is very different from acting and getting all the characters to sound different and believable, and convey the right emotions is a huge challenge. Secondly, there's a definite art involved in the production of the sound quality. Michael put in many hours behind the scenes for every finished hour of the book.
I LOVED listening to the audiobook as he finished each chapter. I found that hearing how a trained actor interpreted the dialog and what he brought to the characters gave me new insights. Of course the book had already been published so we couldn't change anything, but I got a lot of ideas for the sequel. Chapter 7 is my favorite, listened to it three times. Even Michael said he got choked up while narrating that one and had to re-record parts of it. (No spoilers here though!)
I'm happy to answer any questions and I am giving away a free copy of WRECK to one randomly selected commenter. I'll pick the winner at 6PM on the 29th.....
Here's the blurb for WRECK OF THE NEBULA DREAM:
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