Friday, March 14, 2014

Writing: Audio Books


My friend Hugh King, now deceased, used to tell me how he and his wife liked to listen to audio books on their trips. Personally, I haven't gotten into that, although sometimes Kay and I will listen to CD's when we drive long distances. As for audio books, I've been more concerned with the print versions and more recently e-books. All that changed, though, when I recently received several audio copies of my novel, Stress Test.

I've just gone over the royalty statements from my publisher and note that the audio versions of this book (they have not yet chosen to do others) accounted for a small but significant part of its sales. And this leads me to ask these questions: Do you listen to audio versions of books? If so, how do you do it? CD's? Download to an iPod or smart phone? Does it detract from your experience to hear narration by a single voice? Do you think the choice of narrator makes a difference?

I'm offering a chance to win an audio version of Stress Test. You'll start by clicking the link below (not by leaving a comment). Rafflecopter will guide you through the steps. You get one entry if you comment. If you're a subscriber to my newsletter or take this opportunity to use the tab in the right margin to subscribe, you get another entry. Finally, if you tweet about it you'll get another entry. It's all on the honors system, but be fair. Contest ends on March 18.

To enter, click this link.  (I appreciate your comments, but you can only enter via Rafflecopter, so click the link). And thanks.


12 comments:

Anita Cook said...

I LOVE audio books. I usually listen thru Audible on my MP3 player. I plug it in and play it through my car's radio. I do think the narrator makes a difference, but I haven't really heard any narrators that I disliked.

Richard Mabry said...

Thanks, Anita. Appreciate your comment. Glad you like audio books, and good luck winning this one.

Theresa Lode said...

I chuckled reading today's post because I paused my audio book to read and hence, comment.

I'm a HUGE audio book fan. I'm usually listening to a book when I'm going about my day. And the vocal talent at times blows me away. The ability of some of them to take on different accents and intonations is amazing. You'd swear (well, I don't think *you'd* swear ;) ) you were hearing a cast of actors.

I also get audio books through my local library though Audible is my favorite app…it's seamless to download titles.

Sometimes, I will buy a hard copy of a book (usually non fiction) if the audio book requires more careful attention. I'm a junkie for marking up books and that's hard to do on an audio book.

Richard Mabry said...

Theresa, thanks for your comment and for the testimonial about audio books. If you find a way to mark up audio books, let me know. Reminds me of when I got my Kindle and tried to insert a bookmark when I quit reading and closed it.

Betti said...

I have to say that I have never listened to an audio book. However, I think winning yours would be a great introduction!

Richard Mabry said...

Thanks, Betti. Frankly, audio books are sort of a well-kept secret, but they serve a useful purpose. I appreciate your comment. Good luck in the drawing.

pudy68 said...

I like the concept of listening to CD's while driving, but admittedly, I've only listened to one book so far, and it did start to eat at my nerves because of the narrator's voice. The intonations really need to be believable and not sound cheesy or overacted. I would prefer multiple voices as opposed to a single one.

Richard Mabry said...

Thanks for that perspective. I'm wondering if it's at all financially feasible to use multiple voices for an audio recording of a book. Maybe someone who knows more than I do can comment on that.

Claudia Davis said...

I love to read, hardback, paperback, kindle, newspaper, signs, billboards, magazines--I love it all! I enjoy audio books when I am driving because I can't read and drive, but I can listen! The narrator is absolutely the most important part of an audio book. A good narrator takes me into the story in such a way that I don't notice the narrator because I am enjoying the story too much!

Richard Mabry said...

Claudia, Good point. Thanks for that comment.

Seasons of Life said...

I do admit that I love to read but have not listened to a book since my kids were little! I love reading a physical book and did not think I would like a kindle but I have to admit I dearly love mine and LOVE reading on it. I still purchase physical books and love getting them as gifts. I know people who have listened to them and I think it would take getting used to.

Richard Mabry said...

Children will change our habits, won't they? I guess that each form of a book--printed, electronic, audio--serves a portion of our readership, so I'm glad for them all. Thanks for your comment.