Monday, June 16, 2014

Your How-To Audiobook Guide and Summer Reads Giveaway!

Summer is here! Thus begins the ultimate juggling act of kids, work, and all things writing. Luckily, my kids are old enough now to entertain themselves, but that only lasts so long before those dreaded words emerge from their lips, "I'm bored."

I can't even remember what that word means, can you? lol (side effects of parenting)

Aside from that, we get to sleep in and that makes it all okay. :)

So earlier this year I put Butterman (Time) Travel, Inc. up on ACX to turn it into an audiobook. Many of you asked me how it works and what to do, so I thought I'd share the basics, because it's finally out for sale! Yay! (Linked in my sidebar)

This was a pretty big project, and while I initiated everything on my own, I was fortunate enough to connect with a fantastic narrator to partner with. Bryarly Bishop found Butterman and sent me an audition, and right away it was a win/win. Seriously, you gotta check out how cute she is. I'm so thrilled with her voice for Bianca Butterman.

So how did I make it happen? Well this is basically ACX 101--the very basics of how to get started. Mind you, Butterman is an indie pub, so if you don't own your own rights to your story, you need to check with your agent and/or publisher.

  1.  First off, you put your title up on and confirm your rights and create a profile. You'll need to upload part of your story as a word doc, and this is what the narrator will read from when you need a sample.
  2. Next, you need to find a producer. A producer is the person who will narrate and create your actual audiobook. You can certainly be your own producer if you have the time and equipment to do so. Only you know exactly how your story should be told, so this is an excellent project to take on if you can make it happen. Plus, there's a real market for it if you're any good. ACX has in depth how-to instructions and will help you get started with equipment.

           * Finding a producer can be a tad tricky. There are a couple of ways to handle it:

  • You can search for one on the ACX site. Browsing producers is fun and most have sample readings on their profile pages so you can get a feel for their voice. If you find one you like, simply make an offer through the ACX site. 

         Note: You will first need to decide how you want to go into this contract. You can pay your producer          upfront (anywhere from $3000-$6000)and keep all the profits from the audiobook sales, or you can            opt for a Royalty Share contract, where you pay nothing upfront and share all profits from the sales. If          you go the way of a Royalty Share, be aware some producers will not accept. There is also something          called a stipend and that's where ACX will pay a bonus to the producers for taking on your project as          a royalty share. In order to get a stipend on your project, you need to upload your work when it's
         selling the best. If you hit any Amazon bestseller lists, that's the perfect time to get your project up on
          ACX  and hopefully a stipend will appear as the perfect bait for awesome producers. (I learned about           the stipend later so I did not have it available on mine when I went into a contract)

      3.  Instead of searching for your producer, you can sit back and let them come to you. Many are eager              to work on interesting projects, and if they find one they like, they'll send you an audition. Everything              is done directly through ACX for legal purposes. Auditions, messages, and offers are all logged and              part of the legal contract.

At the time I uploaded Butterman, I didn't have time to search for producers, I just sorta put it up and left it aside. Nor did I have the finances to pay someone upfront, so I listed the project as a royalty share. Within a few weeks, I received two auditions, and they were both fabulous. Both producers were willing to do the royalty share, and Bryarly seemed a great fit.

            NOTE: Once you receive an audition, you can ask for more of a reading before going into a                         contract. I did that with Bryarly, because I wanted to hear how she handled the male voices, and she              sent me an  additional 15 minutes of narration before I made my decision.

After we agreed to work together, we officially started the project. We got in right before the big royalty cut back on Audible was announced, and since then, there's been a lot of controversy about ACX. Just be sure to read all the fine print and know exactly what you're agreeing to. ACX is very easy to navigate and quite interesting, at that. I highly recommend taking time to delve into all their info before making any decisions.

So I gave Bryarly two months to complete the project, and on the day of the deadline I had a full 7 hours of audio to listen to and approve. That may seem a bit daunting at first, right? Who has all that time? But it's the nature of the beast, and hearing your own words read back to you is all kinds of exciting. The audio is broken into chapters for easy listening. I made notes on any mistakes or mispronunciations and noted the exact time on the audio feed. I sent all the edits back to Bryarly and she handled the corrections.

After I approved the corrections ( I didn't have to listen to the whole book again--I could go to the exact time on the audio feed to verify) the project went to ACX administration for final approval, which took two weeks.

And now I'm the proud half-owner of Butterman (Time) Travel, Inc. audiobook. What's cool about the royalty share program, is that while I give up half of my profits, I also gain a partner in marketing. Bryarly has as much to gain in promoting this project as I do, and that was something I took into consideration before going into this agreement.

ACX also gives you a little welcome basket of gift codes to get you started, and I'm looking for a few people who enjoy audiobooks to gift to. If you think you'd like to listen to Butterman (Time) Travel, Inc. and can provide an honest review afterward on the Audible site, please email me at and I'll get you set up. This is a $20 value for free!! But supplies are limited, so let me know asap, and only if you genuinely have time for it.

Hope some of this info helps. If you have any questions or concerns, feel free to ask.

Now for a stupendous giveaway!!!

It is my honor and pleasure to share with you the 2014 NA Street Team Summer Reads List. To celebrate this occasion, we are conducting a rafflecopter giveaway.
Grand Prize Package (One Winner)
  Signed paperback copy of Butterman (Time) Travel, Inc. (US Only) – Sponsored by Author PK Hrezo
  Signed paperback copy of Another New Life & $10 Starbucks Gift Card – Sponsored by Author Sydney Aaliyah Michelle
  Ebook version of Winning the Player & $10 Amazon Gift Card – Sponsored by Author Leesa Bow
  $25 Amazon Gift Card – Sponsored by Author Katlyn Duncan
  Signed paperback copy of Adam’s List – Sponsored by Author Jennifer Ann
  Ebook version of Walk with Me & $10 Starbucks Gift Card – Sponsored by Author Kaitlyn Stone
  Signed paperback copy of Impulsion & $5 Amazon Gift Card – Sponsored by Author Jamie Magee

Is that great, or what! This giveaway goes live at 8pm Eastern tonight. Enter to win below:

        a Rafflecopter giveaway

And come back to enter as many times as you like!

A BIG shout out to Mary Weibel for her release of The Mystery Prince:

Tristan enjoys being in the shadows as Prince Rand's bodyguard. Similar in looks, the two often exchanged places in their youth, but he never expected the king to order him to impersonate the heir to the throne in order to win the hand of a princess.

Princess Zoe needs to find a husband. After a year of searching with no success, her father insists on hosting a masquerade ball for the eligible princes of the nine kingdoms. Not one prince piques her interest, until she meets the mysterious stranger who won't tell her his name.

When Tristan meets Zoe he finds the girl of his dreams. The only problem? She's a princess and he's impersonating a prince―a crime punishable by imprisonment and floggings. Unable to tell Zoe his real name, he gives her a special navigation device. One that leads to the owner's true love. Will this magic device lead Zoe to Tristan, or will her true love forever remain a mystery prince?

Available now HERE.


And Jessica Bell has a brand new writing guide out, Polish Your Fiction:

BTW I've got a little blurb in here.

Here's where you can purchase:


Tune in later this week for another epic giveaway!This month is full of prizes!!!

So tell me have you considered creating an audiobook or have you already made one? What are your thoughts or concerns on the process? Interested in listening to and reviewing mine? Limited time offer!

I'm over at Jessica Bell's blog talking about adding emotion to our work. Hop over and say hi!


Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Two people promoting is better than one! Think it would be both thrilling and scary to hear someone read my books.

Barbara Watson said...

Exciting project, PK!

Old Kitty said...

How wonderful to have an audio recording of your book!! Wow!!! All the best PK! Take care

Susan Gourley/Kelley said...

That sounds like a big project. I can't wait to hear how it works out over time. I would be really nervous doing something like that on my own.
Good luck having the kiddies home. My children always had enough neighborhood children to hang out with so they were never bored.

SA Larsenッ said...

Gosh, you are so correct when you say that the inability to be truly bored comes with parenting. Phew...

I'm thrilled for you! You rock!

Author R. Mac Wheeler said...

Thanks for sharing your experience.

I have 24 titles out there now but have only been in publication a couple years. I look forward to adding audible for all my titles when I'm selling more.

I will go listen to a the sample. The whole process sounds intriguing.

Author R. Mac Wheeler said...

I didn't see a link

Ya oughta add it


Norma Beishir said...

PK, do they allow authors to provide their own narrators? I know someone who's very good at narration--and doing various character voices.

Norma Beishir said...

Oops! I see it. Thanks!

Elephant's Child said...

Congratulations - to you and all the other authors who enrich my world and brighten the darkest days (and nights).

Janie Junebug said...

Thanks for sharing the information about audio books. I love the name Bianca Butterman. I think I might change my name.


Jennifer Ruth Jackson said...

It must be exciting to hear your book come to life like that. Congratulations!

Robin said...

This is very exciting. When I traveled a lot for work I listened to audio books frequently. Now I still appreciate them but I don't listen like I used to...

Natalie Aguirre said...

Awesome your book is in audio version. I love audio books.

And can totally relate to the busy driving season of summer. Hoping my daughter gets her license in the next few weeks. Please.

William Kendall said...

Good that you've got that kind of working relationship with Bryarly!

E.J. Wesley said...

Extremely useful info! Bookmarking and sharing. :)

Mary Waibel said...

Great information, PK. I've been thinking about looking in to this as I have several friends who only do audio books.

Carrie-Anne said...

An audiobook would be really fun to create, though I can imagine it's not quick or easy to find good voice actors. I assume an ISBN is needed for an audiobook.

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