Audiobooks Fastest Growing Publishing Format
Who would've thought that listening to someone read you a book could be enjoyable, years ago that would've seemed absurd. However our world is continuously striving for better and quicker consumption of content. An audiobook gives people the opportunity to plow through books while they're at the gym, doing mundane tasks at home such as cooking/cleaning or commuting to work. We know that there're benefits in reading books but are there any benefits in listening to audiobooks. Well, besides the enjoyment factor, it is claimed that audiobooks drastically improve your vocabulary, reading speed and fluency. The benefits seem to surpass those in just reading and you can enjoy it with someone else. It also a very soothing experience.
Thanks to professional narrators and producers using high end studios, the audiobook content being created is top quality. As a reader you have a selection of over 250,000 titles available through Audible, Amazon, iTunes. This will only keep growing as publishers and independent authors take note of this fast growing industry. Expect to see most if not all of your favourite titles available as an audiobook within the next 24 months.
What about independent writer's, is it a worthwhile investment?
If you're book is relatively short, 20,000- 30,000 words, and is selling 10 or more copies per day, then it's a no brainer. You're missing out on a nice chunk of income. Your investment should recoup itself within 3-4 months. If you're book is a full length novel and sales are struggling, then this is where it becomes a tough call. The main route to producing a quality audiobook is through an amazon subsidiary called ACX. You're facing costs anywhere between $3000-$5000, which is pretty steep, or a seemingly unfair royalty split. Another factor to consider is that some books read well but don't sound good narrated and vice a versa. That could be both an advantage or a disadvantage, making this decision even a tougher one. However with the audiobook industry growing at rocket pace, you're likely going to see production costs come down drastically. In the future, all books produced will have an audiobook version - that's no doubt. The question you need to ask yourself now, is whether you go for it and potentially stand to gain on a booming market where demand far exceeds supply or wait for costs to come down.
It seems that entering early could the be same scenario as catching the beginning of the Kindle and e-book wave. If you believe in your book and YOU DO because you wrote it, spread it across as many platforms as possible if you can afford the investment. That's my two cents, let's see how my own journey goes. Everyone is a prophet in hindsight.