Audio Book Meets DIY


Yesterday we talked about audio books, specifically about the money side.  You can refresh your memory here about that. I also referred you to a great post that Cecilia Lewis wrote up detailing how you pick a narrator for your book. Read her article here. Yesterday’s discussion centered around the cost to produce audio books and the options you have about production–if you go the professional route.

If you, like me, have some skill at editing audio files on your own, there is another option. You can narrate your book yourself, edit the audio yourself and submit the files to ACX. They have guidelines and tips to help you navigate your way through the DIY option.

Why on earth would anyone choose the DIY option?

  • You get to keep all of the 40% of royalties that your audio book earns (that’s 40% of the $11.47 most members of Audible pay for an audio book)
  • You don’t have to shell out anywhere from $200 to $1000 per finished hour of audio to a producer to produce your book for you OR hand over half of your royalties if you select the revenue share option instead. ***(Remember that 1 hour of audio is about 9,300 w0rds of your book)
  • You control how the book sounds. You bring the passion and the story and pour them out to a listening microphone.
  • You have a lot of free time on your hands that needs filling (just kidding).

Need more reasons other than finacial ones? Read on.

Neil Gaimon did it and so have a lot of authors. If you haven’t listened to Neil Gaimon narrate his books you’re seriously missing out and you should go here right now and rectify that. Your first listen is free if you sign up for a membership. So you have no excuse!

So self narration is not that uncommon. I just finished an author narrated book entitled, George Washington’s Secret Six: The Spy Ring That Saved America.  It was written by Brian Kilmeade and Don Yaeger. Brian Kilmeade narrated and he brought his interest and excitement for the subject to the audio version. His breathless performance added to the content in ways that a professional voice actor couldn’t have thus making the short book impossible to put down. He makes history exciting.

Also, I am a great admirer of The Great Courses series on Audible where titled and prize-winning profs deliver their best courses in one shot audio books. I’m addicted to that series I must admit. Each prof brings his expertise and his passion for his subject and injects both into every recording.

To DIY or hire a professional voice actor? That is the question, one I’ll be putting to you guys tomorrow as our coverage of all things audible continues.

I hope you will considering choosing audio as one of the formats for your book.  If you do, drop by my facebook page or leave a comment here and tell me! Help feed my audio book addiction.