I’ve been obsessing about audio lately. Not only do I listen to a metric fuckton of audio books and podcasts, but I’ve been consuming my body weight in instruction guides and nonfiction resources in an effort to learn about the creation of audio itself. Why? Because I’m desperate to record and publish my nonfiction as audio books. After starting a podcast, it gave me the confidence I could do it, I figure it’s the next learning step, and frankly, if others are doing it, why the hell can’t I? In this post, I’ve pulled together some of the resources for creating audio books that I’ve been studying, I hope they help you learn more about audio book creation too. In my next post, I’ll take you through my step by step process for creating a mini audio booth.
Resources for Creating Audio books
ONE – Narrated by the Author by Renee Conoulty
If you’ve listened to my podcasts, you’ll have heard me mention this one before. But Narrated by the Author is going down as one of the best instructional nonfiction books I’ve read this year.
The book is a step by step guide starting at the beginning with audio booth set up through to post production, mastering and publication of audio books. It will take you through the settings and levels you need, all the terminology that’s confusing and
I HIGHLY recommend this book if you want to DIY your own audio book.
TWO – So You Want To Start a Podcast by Kristen Meinzer
I listened to this as an audio book and I thought it was a fantastic, thought-provoking book. It’s not a technical guide nor will it teach you how to edit or publish a podcast. What it will do is take you through the basics of podcasting, help you find your ‘thang’ / angle and give you a grounding in how to be as strategic as possible when creating your podcast. It doesn’t cover technical specifics on kit and tech you need, though it does give you an idea of what you need.
The book will also help you:
- Work out whether podcasting is for you
- Find the angle or theme of your show
- Identify your audience
- How to create the perfect show structure
THREE – Storyteller: How to Be an Audio book Narrator by Lorelei King and Ali Muirden
I absolutely adored this book. I did a fair amount of voice acting as a teenager, so this book was a fantastic reminder of the tools and techniques I used to use as well as a whole bunch of new ones.
If you want to create audio books of your fiction novels, then this book is a no brainer purchase. While there is a companion script you can buy on Amazon, I recommend you listen to the audio book. This is because Lorelei actually demonstrates several voice acting techniques and tricks during the audio book, so you won’t understand them from reading alone.
She covers the following:
- What a narrator does.
- Determining if you have what it takes.
- Getting experience.
- How to prepare.
- Marking up scripts.
- Creating voices.
- Handling sex scenes.
- How to behave in studio.
- Challenges and troubleshooting.
- Marketing yourself.
FOUR – Writing for Audio Books: Audio-First for Flow and Pace by Jules Horne
This book is for BEFORE you start recording. It looks at the basics of crafting stories purposely for audio. If you know you want to produce audio, then why not create your work for audio in mind? It will save you the time and effort of having to edit your books when you start recording and trip over long tricky sentences.
This book will show you how to:
- Edit with your narrator in mind
- Use audio flow words and phrases
- Convey information with clarity
- Write from an audio-first viewpoint
- Handle visual book elements
- Engage split-focus listeners
- Shape sentences to hook listeners
FIVE – Quick Links to Useful Articles
Last but by no means least, I’ve included a few links to some great articles on the topic. They’re higher level over views rather than technical how-tos though they do contain a large amount of how-to on the publishing end of audio book creation. Next week, I’ll be taking you through the building and creation of my home audio studio as well as the kit and equipment you need to DIY your own audio books.
First in, Dave Chesson at Kindlepreneur is a hive of information. This post takes you through the basics of uploading and publishing as well as marketing your audio book and tons more.
There’s a similar jam-packed article from Chandler Bolt at the Self-Publishing School taking you through the steps of creating and publishing an audio book right here.
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