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Last Week’s WW: Cover Art and the New Amazon Publishing

As you probably already know, I love audio books.  In fact, I like them so much that I turned my book: 22 Short Scifi Stories into an audio book.  It is now live and available for sale on Audible and Itunes.  And, to celebrate this, I’ve got some FREE copies to give away.  So, if you want one, comment on this post, (or message me) and I’ll pick some people to give it to.  🙂

I used ACX (audiobook creation exchange) to make my book. 

If you have a title up on Amazon, you can link to it, and then open the book up for auditions.  There are two ways to get voice actors.  Pay by the hour, or split the profit 50/50.  If you can afford a great narrator for $200-400/hr, it might be worth going for.  Although, hopefully your book is already a best seller at that point, cause ouch, that’s expensive.  Of course, if it is a best seller, maybe you can talk Wil Wheaton into doing it.  He killed it when he read Ready Player One.

A narrator can be the difference between a successful audio book, and one that doesn’t sell.  I remember when I was listening to Stephen King’s Dark Tower series.  Somewhere around book five, I think, the narrator changed.  It just so happened that that book was out of order, so I thought that maybe I could skip it and go on to the next.  Nope.  The next book was narrated by Stephen King himself.  No offense to him, he’s a great writer, but his narration just didn’t speak to me.  I abandoned the series.  Four books in, and a bad narrator made me quit.  There are plenty of great books on Audible with bad narration.  With audiobooks, it doesn’t matter how compelling a story might be, if it sounds bad, it won’t work.  Choose wisely.  It matters.

I went with the 50/50 split.  Overnight, (literally, I put it up and went to bed) I received three auditions.  One was not great.  Another was decent, but the audio quality wasn’t very good.  And then there was James K. White, the guy that I picked to read my book.  He had a great voice.  I offered him the gig and he accepted it.

I received updates as he uploaded chapters (since my book is short stories, it was each story).  It was amazing listening to someone read the stories that I had written.  He delivered by the deadline I had set, and the book was done.  As for the deadline, I had no idea what a reasonable one was.  I think I put it for three weeks since the total book was short.

After it was done, it was submitted to ACX for quality review.  They gave it the go ahead, and it was up.  I didn’t get to pick the price of the book.  To be honest, I’m still not sure how they set the price.  The book is on sale on Audible right now for 1.99.  It’s regularly priced at 6.95.

So this book is now available as an ebook, a physical book, and an audiobook.  The publishing processes were all fairly easy and exciting.  To see it, hold it, and hear it was pretty cool.  And it’s been a fantastic learning experience.  I think it’s given me a great base knowledge for when I start publishing longer works.  Which reminds me, it’s time to get writing!

Remember, comment below, or message me, if you want a FREE copy of the audio book!!