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Author Nancy J. Cohen discusses the writing process and life as a Florida resident.

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Posts Tagged ‘Audible’

Audiobooks with ACX – Marketing

Posted by Nancy J. Cohen on July 25, 2016

Audiobooks with ACX – Marketing

This is part 5 of my series on Audiobooks with ACX.

When you get the notice from ACX that your audiobook is ready, go to Audible, Amazon, and iTunes and get the buy links and/or affiliate codes. Add these links, your audiobook cover, and a story blurb, to your Website. Add the audiobook to your author accounts at Amazon Author Central, Goodreads, and LibraryThing.

Prepare a list of tweets and posts to promote your new audiobook. Use hashtag #audiobooks to gain followers. Post new release notices on all your sites and send out a newsletter. If you’re also an audiobook listener, post reviews of the books you’ve finished. On your various sites, put “audiobook” into the Search feature and add bloggers and reviewers to your promo list. Search for interest groups with this tag on Twitter, Facebook, Linked In, Goodreads, and Google Plus.

Decide how you are going to give away your free promo codes. You can post a request for reviewers on your various social media sites or in your newsletter. You can go to specific audiobook sites as listed below and solicit reviewers there. Or you can hold a contest and give away the codes as prizes.

If you’re a blogger, post about your new release, the audiobook process, and working with a narrator. You and your producer can interview each other if she is interested.

Use Clips

https://blog.acx.com/2016/03/17/a-new-way-to-promote-your-audiobook-audibles-clips/?=blog

Clips are samples you can record while listening to your book on Audible. First, use one of your promotional codes to download your own book.Then either play your audiobook, or search ahead of time for passages in your pdf file that you’ll want to clip. Note the chapter, then bring up your book on Audible and click the Chapters button. Go to the chapter where the passage is located. Hit the Play icon.

When you hear the portion you want to keep, tap on the Clip button in the lower right corner. Pause the playback so the audio doesn’t keep playing. Click on the dots in the upper right corner and go to Clips. Click on the clip you just snipped, then hit Edit to change the start and end points. Label your clip in the box on top and then tap Done. There might be a simpler method, but this is how I did it. Each clip can be as long as 45 seconds. Do more clips until you have five minutes total, which is the limit. Use these clips in posts and tweets to provide samples of your audiobook. To Share the clip, click Share and choose your social media buttons. Also email yourself a copy so you can save the link and use it elsewhere.

Listen to Permed to Death Clips Here

Goodreads

Goodreads has a group for audiobook lovers. Be sure to read the rules, and only post promotions or review requests where permitted. https://www.goodreads.com/group/show/596-audiobooks

Audiobook Ads and Reviewers

When you go to these sites, read their submission requirements. Note the genres preferred by the reviewers. Keep track of your promo codes as you give them out. Later, check off which recipients actually posted a review so you’ll know who to approach next time. Be sure to post self-promo only in places where this is permitted.

http://audiobookboom.com/authors For $10, you’ll get an ad in their weekly email newsletter. Your audiobook is listed as available for a free download in exchange for a fair review. This ad did get me a number of responses.
http://audavoxx.com/ Your book must rate an average of 4.0 or higher on reviews to be accepted on this site.
https://audiobookreviewer.com/review-submission/ For $25, your book can be a Featured New Release in their weekly blog.
http://www.audiofilemagazine.com/contact/
http://www.eargasmsaudiobookreviews.com/
http://audiobookjukebox.squarespace.com/solid-gold-reviewer-program/
http://audiothing.blogspot.com.au/
http://booksforears.com/
http://www.audiogals.net/
https://theaudiobookworm.wordpress.com/
http://audiobookjungle.com/about/review-policy/
http://briansbookblog.com/

Facebook:

https://www.facebook.com/groups/mysteryaudio/
https://www.facebook.com/AudaVoxx
https://www.facebook.com/groups/AudaVoxx/
https://www.facebook.com/eargasmsaudiobookreviews
https://www.facebook.com/groups/EverythingAudiobooksE.A.R.S/
https://www.facebook.com/AudioBookReviewer/
https://www.facebook.com/groups/1014732691885069/
https://www.facebook.com/groups/freeaudiobookgiveways/ This group is for you to offer your promo codes in exchange for a fair review.

Twitter (#Audiobooks)

https://twitter.com/acx_com
https://twitter.com/AudioBooksBS
https://twitter.com/audible_com
https://twitter.com/audiobkjkbx
https://twitter.com/audavoxx
https://twitter.com/AudioBookRev
https://twitter.com/AudioGals
https://twitter.com/audiobooks_com
https://twitter.com/AudioFileMag
https://twitter.com/Audiobook_Comm
https://twitter.com/AnAudiobookworm
https://twitter.com/listenbooks
https://twitter.com/grapeapril75

Audio Books and Libraries

Audiobooks are provided to libraries through OverDrive, Hoopla, and Recorded Books.

Resources

http://katetilton.com/25-ways-market-audiobook-quick-guide/ (Kate Tilton)
http://blog.acx.com/?s=marketing (Karen Commins)
https://twitter.com/KarenCommins/lists/audiobook-blogs-reviews (Karen Commins)
http://bit.ly/1QXFAhI (The Creative Penn)

CLICK TO TWEET

Coming Next: Audiobooks with ACX – Optimize Your Novel For Audio

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Permed to Death audiobook, book #1 in the Bad Hair Day Mysteries, is available at Audible, Amazon, and iTunes. Narrated by the talented Mary Ann Jacobs from Voice Over Visions. Hairstylist Marla Shore is giving grumpy Mrs. Kravitz a perm when her client dies in the shampoo chair. If that isn’t enough to give her a bad hair day, handsome Detective Dalton Vail suspects Marla of poisoning the woman’s coffee creamer. Listen to Sample Clips.

PERMED TO DEATHaudio (320x320)

BUY NOW
Audible: http://adbl.co/293g3Lk
iTunes: http://apple.co/299427t
Amazon: http://amzn.to/294EC94

<><><>

Giveaways and Bargains

July 1-31
Body Wave (Bad Hair Day Mystery #4) is on sale for $1.00 at
Smashwords until July 31. Use Coupon Code SSW75. Marla the hairstylist goes undercover as a nurse’s aide to help solve the murder of her ex-spouse’s third wife.

BODY WAVEeBook (421x640)

July 11-Aug 8
29 Days of Summer – Cozy Mystery Giveaway
Enter to win 40+ cozy mysteries, PLUS a Kindle Fire! Click Here to Enter

Cozy Mystery - July 2016 - Cohen-Nancy

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Posted in Audiobooks, Marketing, The Writing Life | Tagged: , , , , | 10 Comments »

Audiobooks with ACX – Production

Posted by Nancy J. Cohen on July 21, 2016

Audiobooks with ACX – Production

This is part 4 of my series on Audiobooks with ACX. After you have hit the “Approve Audiobook” button, ACX will instruct you to pay your narrator, if you are paying per finished hour. The payment due is based on the finished length. Once you send the funds via the narrator’s preferred method, click on the button for “I sent xxx to my producer.”

When the producer confirms payment has been received, ACX and Audible will conduct a quality assurance review and prepare the title for retail sale. This can take up to two weeks.

Here’s an idea of how long this all takes from my timeline. My narrator was pretty fast and responded promptly to requests for changes. Hopefully, you’ll find someone just as responsive.

Posted Book Profile on April 12, 2016
First Audition Received on April 18, 2016
Received my narrator’s audition on May 2, 2016
She accepted my offer on May 3, 2016
Final Files Loaded on June 9, 2016
I approved Final Files on June 11, 2016
Production: 7 hours, 14 minutes, 24 seconds
Narrator confirmed payment
Six days later – Audiobook Release

There’s no warning when the audiobook will appear. I got an email from ACX that said: “Permed to Death (The Bad Hair Day Mysteries Book 1) is now on sale at Audible, and it will be available on iTunes and Amazon within the next few days.”

Two days later, I also received my 25 free download codes that can be used for soliciting reviews.

If you have friends or relatives who have never received a book from Audible, you can send them a copy for free from your audiobook’s page on Audible. There’s a button for this purpose. This helps you save some of your codes for better use.

Now it’s time to start on your marketing plan.

<><><>

PERMED TO DEATHaudio (320x320)

Permed to Death audiobook, book #1 in the Bad Hair Day Mysteries, is now available at Audible, Amazon, and iTunes. Narrated by the talented Mary Ann Jacobs from Voice Over Visions. Hairstylist Marla Shore is giving grumpy Mrs. Kravitz a perm when her client dies in the shampoo chair. If that isn’t enough to give her a bad hair day, handsome Detective Dalton Vail suspects Marla of poisoning the woman’s coffee creamer.

Audible: http://adbl.co/293g3Lk

iTunes: http://apple.co/299427t

Amazon: http://amzn.to/294EC94

<><><>

Giveaways and Bargains

July 1-31
Body Wave (Bad Hair Day Mystery #4) is on sale for $1.00 at
Smashwords until July 31. Coupon Code SSW75. Marla the hairstylist goes undercover as a nurse’s aide to help solve the murder of her ex-spouse’s third wife.

July 11-Aug 8
29 Days of Summer – Cozy Mystery Giveaway
Join our summer celebration and enter to win more than 40 cozy mysteries from an amazing collection of authors, PLUS a Kindle Fire!
Click Here to Enter

July 28
Killer Knots original edition ebook will be on sale for ONE DAY ONLY on July 28 for $2.99. Mark your calendars now. Available at most online retailers.

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Posted in Audiobooks, Business of Writing, Marketing, Self-Publishing, The Writing Life | Tagged: , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Audiobooks with ACX – Reviewing Your Files

Posted by Nancy J. Cohen on July 21, 2016

Audiobooks with ACX – Reviewing Your Files

This is part 3 of my series on Audiobooks with ACX. After a narrator has accepted your offer, she’ll send you the first fifteen minutes to review and approve. Thereafter, each chapter is uploaded by the producer as a separate file.

Follow along with the text as you listen and look for missing or extra words, wrong pronunciations, missing lines, or words that may be spoken too low to hear. You want as exact a match as possible if you intend for your book to be Whispersync ready. This feature allows readers to switch between reading their Kindle edition and listening to the corresponding audiobook across devices without losing their place.

Permed

Note if a character’s voice seems appropriate. Should he speak in a bolder tone or a softer one? Higher pitched or lower? Is the accent right? Is there enough emotion in his voice? Can you distinguish among the characters in a scene with two or more people present? Are your character voices consistent throughout the story? Does the narrator pause at a space break? Does she have enough expression in her voice during exposition to keep the listener interested?

Next, listen to the files without looking at the written text. Close your eyes and pay attention to the story as it unfolds. Note qualities in your writing that you might tone down next time because they don’t sound right when spoken aloud.

If you have corrections for the narrator, note them in a separate file. Write down the chapter number and the exact time in the recording where the correction needs to take place. For your own sake, also indicate the page numbers in your pdf file. This makes it easier to go down the entire list at the end to make sure all of your suggested changes have been made. Here is an example of the type of errors I’d found:

Chapter 1

20:33, “You think I’m meshugeh?” You pronounce the word okay, but you read the sentence as, “You think I’m ah-meshugeh.” Please correct.

Chapter 2

8:14, Moishe should sound like Moish, not Moish-ee
p. 26/267; Monkshood should be monks-hood, and not monk-shood.
31:44, p. 34/267; you say leather black handbag. It should be black leather handbag.
Dalton’s voice could be more expressive.

Chapter 3

18:39 Should be “Don’t think me rude”, rather than “Don’t make me rude.”

Chapter 4 is good as is.

Chapter 5

19:55: See this passage toward the end. A couple of words/lines are missing that I’ve bolded here.
“Yep, that’s me.” A frown creased her forehead. She didn’t recognize the voice, nor was she sure of the caller’s gender. The caller ID showed out of area.

“I have a suggestion for you,” rasped the person on the other end of the line. “Mind your own business, unless you want your next cup of coffee to be your last.”

Click. The dial tone buzzed, while Marla stood riveted with the receiver to her ear.

Chapter 6 is good as is.

Chapter 7

11:10 Afraid he’d probe, not afraid he’d probed. We can leave it this way if the sentence makes sense to you in past tense.

Chapter 8

17:40 With deft movements, not delft movements

And so on. You get the idea? To communicate these changes to the producer, go to ACX and click on your project in production where you see the list of chapter files. Click on Request Changes in the upper right to unlock the site so the producer can do a new upload. Then send your producer a message listing each change. Keep all messages within the ACX format so they are properly documented. You can also communicate via email if you wish and send the correction file as an attachment, in addition to the ACX messages. Keep in mind that each time you want changes made, you have to click on that Request Changes button.

While you’re on this page, upload your audiobook cover that must be sized 2400 x 2400 pixels. You can look up other cover art requirements on the ACX site. Make sure your cover artist hasn’t just stretched out your ebook cover. Some modifications to fit the square format will have to be made.

Next, click on the Edit Retail Information in blue toward the top right and under the Approve button. Click here and double-check the metadata info listed.

When no further changes are needed and your narrator has uploaded the final files, click Approve Audiobook.

CLICK TO TWEET: http://ctt.ec/UfgOY

Coming Next: Audiobooks with ACX – Production

<><><>

PERMED TO DEATHaudio (320x320)

Permed to Death audiobook, book #1 in the Bad Hair Day Mysteries, is now available at Audible, Amazon, and iTunes. Narrated by the talented Mary Ann Jacobs from Voice Over Visions. Hairstylist Marla Shore is giving grumpy Mrs. Kravitz a perm when her client dies in the shampoo chair. If that isn’t enough to give her a bad hair day, handsome Detective Dalton Vail suspects Marla of poisoning the woman’s coffee creamer. Listen to sample clips.

BUY NOW
Audible:
http://adbl.co/293g3Lk
iTunes: http://apple.co/299427t
Amazon: http://amzn.to/294EC94

<><><>

Giveaways and Bargains

July 11-Aug 8
29 Days of Summer – Cozy Mystery Giveaway
Join our summer celebration and enter to win more than 40 cozy mysteries from an amazing collection of authors, PLUS a Kindle Fire!
Click Here to Enter

July 1-31
Body Wave (Bad Hair Day Mystery #4) is on sale for $1.00 at
Smashwords until July 31. Coupon Code SSW75. Marla the hairstylist goes undercover as a nurse’s aide to help solve the murder of her ex-spouse’s third wife.

July 28
Killer Knots original edition ebook will be on sale for ONE DAY ONLY on July 28 for $2.99. Mark your calendars now. Available at most online retailers.

 

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Posted in Audiobooks, Business of Writing, Self-Publishing, The Writing Life | Tagged: , , , , | 1 Comment »

Audiobooks with ACX – Auditions and Narrators

Posted by Nancy J. Cohen on July 18, 2016

Audiobooks with ACX – Auditions and Narrators

This is Part 2 of my series on Audiobooks with ACX. Once you’ve submitted your book’s profile, you are ready to accept auditions. Here’s where it gets hairy if nobody responds. Be patient. Eventually, you’ll begin hearing from narrators, also called producers.

woman headset

Soliciting Narrators

You don’t have to sit around and wait for narrators to contact you. You can search for your own on ACX. Click on Search and then Producers for Hire. Various filters are provided that will help your selection, such as genre, gender, voice age, and style. You can also fill in the type of payment you’re willing to offer.

Narrator Voice

The narrators list their websites, so you can see how many titles in your genre they’ve done. Their producer site on ACX lists their payment preferences and offers samples for you to listen.

Narrator Filters

See which voices strike you as matching your main character. Can you distinguish between different characters in scenes with more than one person? Can you hear the narrator’s voice well, or is it too low? Too raspy? Too fast, or too high-pitched? Too faltering? When you find someone you like, click Send Message from her ACX page and invite her to submit an audition.

When you receive auditions, you can click Like, Dislike, or Maybe to organize your selections. Narrators do not see this. When you want to listen again, click on the Like link for the samples to pop up. Be very discerning. Don’t take the first person who comes along.

Payment Plans

Find out what payment plan is acceptable to the narrator you like the best. Is she willing to work for royalty share alone? Some will only do royalty share if you also pay $100 pfh on the side or split the production costs. It’s not unreasonable on the narrator’s part to want to get paid, considering the hours and money she’ll put into production. Or is she only willing to accept an up-front payment of $200+ per finished hour? What’s the difference?

ACX sets the retail price based on finished length. They pay 40% royalty on retail sales. With royalty split, you get half (20%) and the narrator gets half (20%). The contract lasts for seven years. This is a good option if you don’t have the cash to pay the cost up front or if you’re not willing to take the chance that sales will exceed your initial expense. If you do royalty share and decide to cancel this arrangement after seven years, then you lose any rights to the recording. You’ll have to start all over again.

If you pay per finished hour (pfh) for the recording or have obtained a recording from another source, then you’ll retain rights. But you need to decide on exclusive or non-exclusive distribution. In an exclusive deal, your audiobook will be downloadable from Audible, Amazon, and iTunes, but you cannot offer it for sale anywhere else nor will it be available in CD format. Your royalty is higher this way than for a non-exclusive choice where it drops to 25%. With royalty share, it’s automatically an exclusive deal.

Stipends

Another option for producers is royalty share plus a stipend, in which case ACX pays the producer $100 per finished hour. Each book, upon submission to ACX, goes into a set of algorithms that take into account publication date, reviews, ratings, and your social media presence. If you’re lucky, they’ll offer you a stipend. If your book is accepted, you’ll see a green banner on your title in the ACX system.If it doesn’t qualify, and it’s been active on ACX for a while, you can take it out of production and reactivate it later. The stipend algorithms may be applied again.

Choosing a Producer

Once you’ve agreed on a method of payment, ask the narrator if she’s willing to send you several chapters at a time for you to review while the book is in production. Also ask about her availability in terms of scheduling. Does she have a block of time free for when you’ll want to get started? Do you? Be prepared to commit your time for a month or two and agree on a set of dates. Do all this before you make a formal offer.

Making an Offer

When you are in agreement with a narrator you like, go to her ACX page and click on the “Make an Offer” button. You’ll have to set deadlines for the first fifteen minutes and for the finished book. Make these reasonable, because you’ll need time to review the files. This offer expires after a certain number of days. If the narrator accepts, you’ll be asked to upload a pdf file. Then you sit back and wait to receive the first 15 minutes for review.

CLICK TO TWEET

Coming Next: Audiobooks with ACX – Reviewing Your Files

<><><>

Permed to Death audiobook, book #1 in the Bad Hair Day Mysteries, is available at Audible, Amazon, and iTunes. Narrated by the talented Mary Ann Jacobs from Voice Over Visions. Hairstylist Marla Shore is giving grumpy Mrs. Kravitz a perm when her client dies in the shampoo chair. If that isn’t enough to give her a bad hair day, handsome Detective Dalton Vail suspects Marla of poisoning the woman’s coffee creamer. Listen to Sample Clips

PERMED TO DEATHnewflat_audio (640x640)

Audible: http://adbl.co/293g3Lk
iTunes: http://apple.co/299427t
Amazon: http://amzn.to/294EC94

<><><>

GIVEAWAYS and BARGAINS

July 1-18
Enter to win a $25 Amazon/BN gift card from Booklover’s Bench, where readers are winners.

July 1-31
Body Wave (Bad Hair Day Mystery #4) is on sale for $1.00 at Smashwords until July 31. Use Coupon Code SSW75. Marla the hairstylist goes undercover as a nurse’s aide to help solve the murder of her ex-spouse’s third wife.

July 11-Aug 8
29 Days of Summer – Cozy Mystery Giveaway
Join our summer celebration and enter to win more than 40 cozy mysteries from an amazing collection of authors, PLUS a Kindle Fire! Click Here to Enter

Cozy-Contest_thumb.jpg

July 28
Killer Knots original edition ebook will be on sale for ONE DAY ONLY on July 28 for $2.99. Mark your calendars now. Available at most online retailers.

 

Save

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Posted in Audiobooks, Business of Writing, Self-Publishing, The Writing Life, Writing Tips | Tagged: , , , , , | 8 Comments »

ACX and Audible

Posted by Nancy J. Cohen on November 26, 2014

ACX and Audible
Novelists, Inc. Conference St. Pete Beach Oct. 2014

P1030932

What Sells in Audio? Teen and YA Fiction, Romance, Scifi/Fantasy, Mysteries/Thrillers, Business and History.

What do you need to get started? You need a published book on Amazon, audio rights, a manuscript, cover art and rights to the cover. There is no particular length requirement. Figure that 9300 words equals one finished hour of audio. In your profile when you apply to ACX, mention the main characters in your book, your awards and track record.

Options include paying the narrator upfront based on book length or sharing the earnings 50-50 and paying nothing up front. This latter term lasts seven years. Thereafter, you can renew each year or remove the audio book from distribution. A third option is to upload your own audio file.

Royalties are 40% for exclusive distribution and 25% if you go nonexclusive. For the former, you and the narrator split the royalty, meaning you’d each earn 20%. Distribution is to Audible, Amazon, and iTunes. Make sure you grant world rights for global reach.

You can earn a $50.00 bounty when someone joins Audible and purchases your book first. The person must stay in Audible for 30 days after the trial period.

The author gets 25 download codes for promotion but these don’t count toward your bounty. You can request more. How can you use these? Use them to generate reviews. Check out these sites: Audiofile, AudioGals, Books for Ears. Offer giveaways to your newsletter subscribers and social media fans. You can use Audible’s gift center to send a book to a fan.

If you already have an audio file, make sure it meets the requirements. It takes about three weeks after uploading to become active. Royalties are paid monthly via check or direct deposit.

Selecting your Narrator

Is she too fast? Too slow? Too cartoonish? Just right? Keep in mind that the listener can speed the audio with a tool in the app. You’ll want to give your narrator about three pages to read. These can be different paragraphs along with the context. In a series, continuity of narrator is important. A single voice is more popular than a multi-cast. Any additional material should come after the credits at the end.

One tip: use fewer dialogue tags. Various checkpoints occur in the process: the initial audition, and then a 15 minute sample which does not have to be the first pages of your work. You can request two rounds of revisions. Listen for the quality of sound during the longer samples. You can terminate the contract if you do not like the results. If approved, you can request three chapters at a time from your narrator.

Check the performance rating with each narrator, visit their website and note how many books they’ve done. You can click Like or Dislike to organize your selections. Narrators do not see this. You can send sample clips to friends for their opinions. Ask the narrator about her editing. Will she allow you to review the audio chapter by chapter, or at least three chapters at a time? You want somebody who’s easy to work with. If you are not happy with the narrator and reviews reflect your views, you can ask the narrator to re-record and upload. Do the first book slowly and thoughtfully. Do not rush the process.

The speaker from ACX at Ninc who nominates audio books for promotion said she looks at the book cover first. Next she’ll check out the number of reviews and what they say. She will check out your social media sites to see if you are promoting your audios. If you have a series, getting a promo boost for book one is important. Branding and packaging should carry over from other series titles.

How to Stand Out

Consider adding teasers for sequels after the credits. Coordinate promo efforts with your narrator. Leverage SoundCloud for audio clips. Make a dedicated space on your website for audio books. You can distribute up to 10% of your audio on a clip. This can be embedded on your website.

 

Note: Any errors in this article are due to my interpretation.

 

Posted in Business of Writing, Conferences, Marketing, Self-Publishing, The Writing Life | Tagged: , , , , , , , , | 12 Comments »

 
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