An Author’s Journey – Recording an Audiobook

I have long held the dream of recording one of my books on audio. It’s why I bought a fancy microphone years ago – which loitered on a shelf collecting dust until I started producing this blog into a podcast. I love audio books. I listen to them often.

Or, well, my husband listens to them more than I do now based solely on his use of the car. I am blessed with the ability to sit down and read and call it “work” because authors must also be readers. It’s the single best means of learning how to tell a story effectively. I am also blessed with a husband who works very hard to permit me the time to do all that reading and writing.

But not every is as blessed as I am.

And in fact, it wasn’t all that long ago when I relied on audiobooks to get my reading in because I was a single mother and there just weren’t enough hours in the day to get everything done, let alone read.

So when I say I understand the value of audiobooks, I mean it.

Now we come to the nitty-gritty of recording an audiobook, which… isn’t as nitty-gritty as I feared it would be. I walked into this fearing the worst, that I would not be able to afford the programs to help me record and that I would not be able to understand how to edit an audio file.

Well, there are other fears too. Such as the idea that people would wrinkle their noses at the sound of my voice, and I’m sure some people will. My pitch and tone could remind them of a hateful person from their past, or they might just dislike it in general, but those are issues that are outside of my control. So while there’s a small portion of me screaming in self-conscious dismay, I cannot let the things I have no control over hold me back.

If you hate my voice, I’m sorry.

Happily, you can pick up the stories I tell, or even this blog, and read it without having to hear me.

Circling back to the nitty-gritty… I found a lovely site called Podcastle that has helped me immensely with recording Nora’s book. I’m still working with it because, quite frankly, it got super cold for a little while and you could hear my space heater rumbling away in the background. The choices were to hear my teeth chattering away as I read the manuscript, or wait until the weather was more amenable. And because I’m already a bit of a baby when it gets too cold, I chose the latter.

For editing the audio files… I confess I am still working on that. Thus far it seems alright? But I am also not an audio-master and I suspect before I’m done I will be reaching out to try and find someone who is more familiar with the task. They will probably hear things/catch stuff that I haven’t been able to.

Regardless, it’s been a brave new adventure for me and I’m excited to see the finished product.

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