Today we’re talking about AUDIO Books. Since I’m relatively new to the process I wanted to get the advice and wisdom of some authors who have gone through the process of converting a book to audio, so I sought out one of my Wild Rose Press sistahs, Linda Nightingale, to help me out. Linda’s a prolific writer, not to mention a lot of fun, as evidenced by this picture of her at a recent signing. ( she’s the one on your right!)
I wanted to know how daunting this process was, what she had to go through, and if it was worth the effort that it seems to be. Her advice has been invaluable in helping me make the move from print to audio! Here’s Linda in her own words:
(ME) How did you feel about your books going to audio?
I was thrilled! Bowled over even! When my publisher announced that it was possible for our books to go to audio, I immediately signed on.
My experience with audio books was very pleasant with two of my four. I was lucky enough to snag this young Englishwoman with a lovely voice and accent perfect for both Love For Sale and Morgan D’Arcy: A Vampyre Rhapsody. Her delivery was impeccable. I was thrilled, even though Morgan D’Arcy is told in first person male.
The second two were not as successful. With Gambler’s Choice, though the girl, again an Englishwoman, had the book well dramatized, she didn’t change with the characters, which could be forgiven, but she sounded as if she were in a well. I received many comments on this fact in reviews.
The second, Gylded Wings, was a dark fantasy. However, the narrator read it as if it were a fairytale—has tone and sing-song way of telling the story.
Writing for audio books is different from writing a book seen on a page. Maybe it shouldn’t be but when the reader is looking at the text on a page, they can follow ‘untagged’ dialogue for a time and understand who’s talking. With audio books, this isn’t the case. The listener can become confused if the dialogue isn’t clearly tagged as to the speaker, but when the book is already published, it’s too late to change it. Just something to keep in mind if you are writing for audio.
The process itself, ‘proofing’ your book for errors, can take hours of listening and then listening again to the corrections. I enjoyed every minute. I loved to listen to my characters coming to life.
As to sales—not record yet, but still hoping. If you aren’t a member of Audible, they are quite pricey, and promoting an audio book takes just as much effort and savvy as promoting your eBook or print version. The first thing I did was to sign up for a blog tour, and that worked out well. Unfortunately, many of the hosts couldn’t use the audio files, and I had to come up with an alternative: refer them to my website and hope they hang around while they’re visiting.
Will I do it again? Oh, yes. It’s exciting to hear your book read. Also a confirmation in a way. Look, what I did! Self, listen this isn’t half-bad!
Peggy here: Here’s another of Linda’s audiobooks, Her General in Gray
A little about Linda:
Linda has lived a interesting life—from breeding and showing horses to working for a Circuit Judge—and won some prestigious awards for her writing. Find out more about her on her website and various social media, and she’d love to hear from you via email.
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Peggy here – Linda thank you so much for all your advice!