“Why haven’t you done an audiobook yet?” or “When will the Audible version be available?” are two of the questions I have heard the most since launching The Operator Series. To be completely honest with you, I went into the audiobook market with as much enthusiasm as I would a root canal appointment. I suppose you could say that I am a traditional writer. I learned how to type on a manual Smith Corona. (Millennials and Gen Z go Google that) Around 1993 I shifted away from an electric typewriter with an autocorrect ribbon, you have no idea of the struggle, to a monochrome word processor.
Yes, I have embraced technology and I am writing this submission with a MacBook. However, I still consider myself to be a writer. The idea of producing an audiobook seemed to be far more difficult and, frankly, annoying than which I felt like dealing. However stubborn I can be, I am not completely intractable. My first thought was that I would have to go out on my own and find a narrator. There was no way I was going to sit in front of a microphone and read my own book. I tried that once and gave up after two chapters. My other reason for ignoring the audiobook format was that I had no idea how to go about submitting it.
About couple of months ago, for some reason, I felt a spark of inspiration and I decided to search “how to publish an audiobook”. What I discovered was a very helpful video on Youtube by an experienced author. Essentially, the author produced a step by step instructional video that detailed how to go about submitting your published book through ACX. ACX.com is the Audible, Amazon, iTunes submission gateway for audiobooks.
In a relatively short amount of time I had a new account created and began the process of auditioning narrators. ACX pairs authors with pre-approved narrators. The first day I had three auditions and by the end of the first week I had fifteen. A few were really good, some were just okay, and a couple were not so great. One guy actually read me a Sherlock Holmes chapter for an audition instead of the pages that I had submitted.
There were two outstanding candidates and I had help from my family making the final selection. After all, it will not just be me listening to the audio version of my books. The narrator turned out to be very professional and finished the work ahead of schedule. The next step was submitting the material for approval by ACX / Audible. That process took a couple of weeks and here we are today.
Operations Diomedes, The Operator Book 3 is the newest, latest submission in the series. As this is the current title we are promoting, I decided to make it the first audiobook. Before you ask, yes, the previous Operator books will become audiobooks. However, we need to take one step at a time.
The bottom line is that, despite my misgivings about the whole situation, thanks to ACX, the process was not as painful as expected. If you are a more traditional reader and desire the dead tree version or Kindle, please feel free to avail yourself to either. Thank you for all of the support so many of you have given me. PS: The Operator, Book 4 is underway.