Are you a fiction #audiobook fan? I asked that question in several places on Facebook this past week and was intrigued by the intensity of the replies! Many were not content to simply say yes or no but apparently felt a need to convince others they should embrace the same response.
Those in the YES camp gave one or more of these scenarios:
• They have a long commute or travel frequently, and a fiction audiobook keeps them engaged in the car
• They have poor vision, making actual reading difficult or impossible
• They listen while doing chores: cooking, gardening, laundry, etc
• They listen while jogging/exercising
• They love the nuances a good narrator brings to a book
• They fondly remember radio dramas from years gone by
• They’ve always loved being read to
Those in the NO camp didn’t see the point:
• They prefer silence
• They prefer music
• They’re visual, preferring to see words rather than hear them
• They lose track of the story because they become immersed in the task they’re doing
• They listen to podcasts or nonfiction but not fiction
• They don’t like the voice-acting (female voices imitating male, for instance)
• Or, they just couldn’t see the attraction of audio at all
One thing many respondents agreed with? The narrator makes ALL the difference. There are excellent readers, there are good readers, and there are readers who should go into another line of work.
I knew this. It’s why I’ve been delighted to partner with narrator and author Becky Doughty for my Farm Fresh Romance books. She has a great voice and has been a gem to work with. She’ll be wrapping up the series this fall with the last two books. I love that all six books are by the same narrator. It seemed important to me right from the beginning to have that continuity.
But what about a new series? Becky is reserving 2017 for some personal projects, which is perfectly understandable. I was already debating finding a different narrator for new work — not because I’m unhappy with her, but because I wondered if a new voice for a new series might generally be a good idea. I asked some questions on Facebook because I was curious how readers /listeners felt about whether to proceed with additional titles in audio at all.
Because the audiobook lovers are fanatical about audio — and because my audio sales have increased with each new audio release — I’ve decided to go ahead and invite auditions for Secrets of Sunbeams and hopefully the entire upcoming Urban Farm Fresh Romance series. Although listening to auditions can be time-consuming, I’m looking forward to hearing different voices interpret the short audition scripts I’ve provided.
Personally, I’m making a conscious effort to try out several fiction audiobooks these days, trying to get into the spirit of it and learning to be a better judge of what I like in a narrator and why.
Did you know?
• You can download one free audiobook with a trial membership with Audible. Why not test-drive one of mine?
• You can purchase, download, and listen to audiobooks without an Audible membership by purchasing from Amazon or iTunes
• Often you can buy audiobooks for a greatly reduced price along with the Kindle e-book.
So… do you enjoy fiction via audio? If so, name one title that stood out to you as exceptionally well done. If not, let me know what is holding you back, and if you’re open to giving one a try. I’ll give away an audiobook to two commenters. If you’re a winner, you can choose any one of my titles in audio. Winners will be posted in the Sunday Edition on July 31 and can email me with their choice.
Here’s a sample from Dandelions for Dinner, the fourth book in my Farm Fresh Romance series. Dandelions for Dinner recently won a Word Award for best contemporary novel from a Canadian Christian author via The Word Guild. You can purchase the e-book from Amazon for $4.99 and add the audio version for only $1.99. That’s a savings of $12.97 from Audible’s price for just the audiobook!
Several Inspy Romance authors have their books in audio. You can find a list on the News page.