Please welcome back SMFS member Judy Penz Sheluk back today. Her topic in this guest post is short stories and audiobooks.
Producing an audiobook: It is worth it for short stories? by Judy Penz Sheluk
Last year, I took the plunge and decided to release both my mystery novels in audiobook format using ACX as the publishing platform. SKELETONS IN THE ATTIC was published in July 2017, followed by THE HANGED MAN’S NOOSE in November 2017. While I’m not quite ready to buy a new car, my investment was simply one of time: I’d already written the books, I owned the audiobook rights, and I opted for a royalty share with the narrator/publisher (the lovely thing about that is ACX takes care of the payment side of things for both sides AND they pay monthly).
While full-length novels seemed to make sense for audiobooks, I couldn’t help but wonder if it would be worth investing the time into LIVE FREE OR TRI, my self-published collection of three short mystery stories, originally released in January 2016 on Amazon. After all, what did I have to lose beyond a few hours of my time?
Following the ACX protocol (you can read all about it on my blog, links below, or go directly to ACX.com), I put a callout for narrators. Fortunately for me, Kate Tyler submitted a great audition, and, after checking her other audiobooks, I contracted her for the work. She didn’t disappoint (you can hear a sample on Audible.com), but at just under one hour of listening time, versus the 6 to 8 hours of my previous books, would the book actually sell?
The short answer is yes; in fact, in a month LIVE FREE OR TRI has already outsold THE HANGED MAN’S NOOSE, and is rapidly closing in on SKELETONS IN THE ATTIC. It seems folks actually want short and mysterious, and some are even willing to review it, with almost all 5/5/5-star ratings (audiobooks are rated 1-5 on Story, Narration, and Overall) on Audible, as well as a handful of ratings on Goodreads.
Will I get rich selling audiobooks, short, long or otherwise? Unlikely. But I’m getting my stories into the hands (or ears) of new readers and listeners, all without any monetary out-of-pocket expense. That, to me, is a definite win. If you own the audiobook rights to your story, I urge you to try it. After all, what have you got to lose?
Producing an audiobook, Part I
Producing an audiobook, Part II
New to Audible? Here's a link to a free download of LIVE FREE OR TRI: http://www.audible.com/t2/title?asin=B0799XWG96
Judy Penz Sheluk ©2018
An Amazon international bestselling author, Judy Penz Sheluk is the author of two mystery series: The Glass Dolphin Mysteries (THE HANGED MAN’S NOOSE and A HOLE IN ONE) and The Marketville Mysteries (SKELETONS IN THE ATTIC). Her short crime fiction appears is included in several collections, including LIVE FREE OR TRI.
Judy is a member of Sisters in Crime, International Thriller Writers, the Short Mystery Fiction Society, and Crime Writers of Canada, where she currently serves on the Board of Directors as the Regional Representative for Toronto/Southern Ontario.
Find Judy on her website/blog at http://www.judypenzsheluk.com, where she interviews and showcases the works of other authors and blogs about the writing life.