So, I've been working on making an audiobook for Into the West: The Orphan Train. I think I'm getting the technical part figured out for recording the tracks so they meet all the specifications but I still have a few things to work out.
One issue is I'm still going back and forth between should I record this in stereo or mono. I have seen examples for people using both. I like the sound of the background music in stereo better but that only plays at the beginning and the very end. It seems to me to need a lot less tweaking with mono. Beyond that issue, I'm also having trouble deciding how I want to make this available for sale.
I have been researching different audiobook venders available to me and I have not been very thrilled with what I have found at this point. I plan to review it all again today to be sure I understand things correctly but right now it seems as if my options are quite limited.
I am not able to use ACX, for reasons I won't go into here, which is the Amazon producer for audiobooks. I can use Author's Republic (AR) which can publish to Amazon for me but there is a catch. What they do is create an account for my book with ACX. The agreement with ACX is you can get up to 40% of the profits if you are exclusive with them for 7 years or you can get 25% if you are not exclusive.
If I go with AR and they publish to Amazon (this includes Audible and iTunes in their package), they make this deal for me, sort of like an agent. AR would get the 40% or 25% profit from the Amazon package sales and I would get 70% of AR's 40% or 25%. I can't imagine that would be much of a profit.
I can choose to have AR post my audiobook in several other places in the non-exclusive deal so I would, hopefully, have a wider market for sales but the major audiobook publishers would be the big three through Amazon. If I choose to have AR just sell through the Amazon package, it would have to be an exclusive deal with AR for seven years to qualify for the higher percentage rate. Meaning I would be tied to AR for seven years (and them to ACX) and not able to even sell my own audiobooks on my own site in that time.
Last night, quite by accident, I found I can sell my audiobooks directly from my website. I would retain all the profits from those sales but I would have an extremely limited market. Though when you consider my main audience still tends to just be family and friends, I'm not really sure it matters all that much if I go through Amazon or not.
I am going to research but right now I am considering selling in the expanded market eventually but will most likely just start with the sales directly from my website and expand from there sometime later in the year. I hope I to get some good reviews posted on my own site for the audiobooks that I could later use to market the audiobook on the expanded retail sites.
It is all a work in progress. Just wanted to let you know, I am working on it. I know some people have been asking for audiobooks since the first book came out in 2015. I looks like it's finally going to happen, one way or another. I just have to get it all pulled together.
Thanks for riding with me on this adventure!