Creating Your Own Audio Books
Writers Info, Writers Tips

Creating Your Own Audio Books

Creating your own audiobooks

may save you some money. There are quite a number of things you might want to consider before you start reading your stories into your computer or cellphone microphone. You will need a completely soundproof room in which to record, a very nice microphone connected to your laptop, and a sound screen for the microphone to dampen down any lisp or other speaking sound problems you might have. You will have to print out each chapter, make notes about how you want to speak the different parts and make sure you distinguish when each of the different characters is speaking.  Below are some of the technical requirements we found on

Technical Audio Requirements

• All audio must be human-narrated and provided as FLAC or MP3 files. Text to speech audio will be
removed from Findaway Voices.
• Each file should have a constant bit rate of 192 kbps or higher, and a sample rate of 44.1 kHz.
• Each individual file must contain between 0.5 and 1 second of silence (room tone) at the beginning
of the file, before narration performance begins, and between 1 and 5 seconds of silence (room tone) at
the end of file, after narration completes.
• RMS for each file must measure between -23dB and -18dB, with peak values below -3dB, and a
maximum -60dB floor.
• No copyrighted materials or extraneous sounds (pages turning, etc.).

And ACX has a whole section of their Help files devoted to helping authors record their own audiobooks. These are very similar to Findaway Voices.

The Gear You’ll Need:

A comfy chair that won’t creak

  • A script stand
  • A microphone (preferably a large-diaphragm condenser)
  • Mic stand or deskmount
  • Mic Shockmount
  • A Pop filter
  • XLR Cable to connect microphone to an audio interface
  • Audio interface (such as an MBox)
  • A reasonably fast and quiet computer
  • External Hard Drive (solid-state drive preferable as they are typically quiet and fast)
  • Recording/Editing Software (such as Audacity, Twisted Wave, Wavelab, or Pro Tools)
  • Material to deaden sound
  • Lighting that is easy on the eyes (Avoid fluorescents or anything with a dimmer)

Recording your own stories will take time as well as a hefty expense to get set up. This may be worth it to those authors who really enjoy acting out their stories and have a great backlist of books to convert. To maintain complete control we do suggest that you purchase your own ISBNs for every version of your stories. It keeps the national and international distribution channels from getting confused about which ISBN goes with which service. More on this later.

For those who do not have the voice, time, or patience to do their own narrations you might want to hold a fundraiser to get enough money to pay for a good narrator. Most books are between 8 to 10 finished hour length. That means you are looking at around $250.00 per finished hour or $2000 to $3000 per book. Both ACX and Findaway Voices accept credit cards for payments. And the full payment is due before the finished product is sent through the distribution chain.

I found the following video entertaining as well as very informative

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