Can You Hear Me Now? #Audio Adventure and It’s Launch Day! Diamonds & Dust!


The Adventure into Audio

I think most of you have heard of ACX by now. It’s a division of the Amazon empire that helps authors get their books made into audiobooks and helps talent find work to produce.

I dipped a toe in last spring with The Backworlds and The Renaissance of Hetty Locklear. I had no idea what I was doing. It can cost a pretty penny to produce audio, pennies not in my business plan or budget. So I opted for the 50/50 royalty share, which only cost me new covers.


Since downloads of The Backworlds have always been strong and the reviews favorable, I received several auditions for it. Rish Outfield did a great job reading.

How does it do? Well, it doesn’t sell gobs and gobs, but it is another paycheck each quarter. Enough to have paid for the separate audio cover and get into profit.

It’s enough to tempt me to sign up Stopover at the Backworlds’ Edge. Rish said he’d like to read book 2. So yay!


Kristie Ann Foss, a young actress, read Hetty for me. She’s a newbie. I’m a newbie. And it’s a much longer work than The Backworlds. I picked her because I loved her voice and she lives in the Pacific Northwest, which gives it the PNW nonaccent accent. Fitting, since that book is set in Portland, OR. Hetty’s audio should be out in January, and I liked Kristie so much I told her if I decide to make The Rifters into audio, she’s hired.

So, that’s how you go about getting narrators at no extra cost besides the 50/50 royalty share and a cover – either have a story with strong sales or downloads that attracts auditions, or look for a newbie who wants the acting/performance credits.

Both my narrators had me falling in love with my stories anew, which is a wonderful bonus. In a few more months, I’ll probably have a stronger idea of what I think about audio.

Perhaps I’ll have something of a marketing strategy by then too. It’s a totally different audience, so I don’t see the point of a blog tour for audio. I started researching podcasts and will see what I can come up with. Anyone have any ideas?

This is December’s Indie Life. Hosted by the Indelibles the 2nd Wednesday of each month. Join us.


It’s Launch Day!

Diamonds and Dust

by River Fairchild

Book 1 of the Jewels of Chandra series


Magic is real. So is betrayal.

Two heirs. A Kingdom of dust on a troubled world. One might resurrect it. One might destroy it all.

Archaeologist David Alexander investigates the cave where his father disappeared and hurtles into another world, one filled with magic and bizarre creatures. The mad ravings in his father’s journals of icemen and dragons may not be fantasies after all.

Convinced his father may still be alive, David begins a treacherous journey to find him and discover a way home. Along the way, he encounters a few unlikely friends. A Dreean warrior, a beautiful thief and a satyr join him as he searches.

David’s arrival into this new world sets off an explosive chain reaction of events. Faced with powerful adversaries and few clues, he may not get the chance to rescue his father before disaster strikes, condemning both of them to death. Or worse.

Buy it here:





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River Fairchild1River Fairchild is somewhat odd, brandishes a dry sense of humor, owned by several cats. Lives in a fantasy world. A fabricator of magic. Makes stuff up and spins tales about it. Believes in Faerie crossings and never staying in one place for very long. Speculative Fiction wordsmith. The secret to her stories? Spread lies, blend in truths, add a pinch of snark and a dash of tears. Escape into her world. She left the porch light on so you can find your way down the rabbit hole.

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  1. December 11, 2013    

    I’ve heard how much it costs to do an audio book, so a fifty-fifty split sounds like a good idea.
    Congratulations, River!

  2. December 11, 2013    

    Thanks, Mary!
    Yes, it seems like podcasts would be the way to advertise audio. I would think Twitter might be another source for getting the word out, too, with the musicians perhaps?

  3. December 11, 2013    

    I think so, Alex. I consider any sales a bonus.

    Twitter is a great way to find podcasts, River. I’ve been collecting them. :)

  4. December 11, 2013    

    What a wonderful bonus in the narrator accent Mary. It sounds like a challenging, but rewarding, new market.

  5. December 11, 2013    

    Wow, it’s so interesting to hear about your audio book experience. Hearing your book read out loud would be such a blast!

  6. December 11, 2013    

    A 50/50 split definitely sounds ideal. Thanks for sharing your experience with ACX.

    Congrats to River!

  7. December 11, 2013    

    I didn’t know about Amazon’s audio option. I’ve been hearing more authors trying audio. It’s great to hear your perspective on it.

    Congrats to River on the book launch – love this cover!

  8. December 11, 2013    

    I hope it becomes more rewarding, Maurice.

    It’s an awesome thing, Catherine, to hear them read.

    That’s the way to do it with no # up front, Cherie. The trick is finding a narrator to take that deal. But they’re out there. Keep looking.

    It’s on a separate site, Kimberly. Supposedly audio is gaining in popularity.

  9. December 11, 2013    

    Audio books sound so hard! But there could be great validation in getting one produced.

  10. December 11, 2013    

    Wow! Audiobooks sound like a great opportunity. I had no idea you could do a 50/50 share. I can’t wait to hear how it goes.

  11. December 11, 2013    

    Just when you think you have a handle on what’s happening in the indie world, the ‘shiny new thing’ comes along and you know you don’t know half of what you think you know. :) The thought of audio is making me dizzy. Not even going to venture a thought down that road for now.

    Congrats on what you’ve done with getting your works on audio. Seems to be worth it so far. Congrats as well to River!

    Seeing your post made me remember Indie life. Missed the last two postings. :(

  12. December 11, 2013    

    The only work for me is getting the narrator lined up and sending them the manuscript. Then getting a new cover made. OK, Michael, I do have to figure out how to market them better.

    It’s another way to get out there, CM.

    I’m throwing stuff at the wall and seeing what sticks, Joy. lol

  13. December 11, 2013    

    Thanks for sharing your experience. Although I’m a long way from being ready to publish, I love learning more about the business.

  14. December 11, 2013    

    Thank you for your detailed account of venturing into audiobooks! I’ve wondered, and thought about it, but wasn’t sure. I’m still going to think about it for a while . . . maybe when I get my second book totally finished, then I’ll have more time to ponder and make a decision.
    Please continue to give updates about this!

    I love your comment on the PNW nonaccent accent – from my understanding (I’ve lived here my whole life so I don’t hear it), PNW has a tendency to trail off at the end of our sentences and listeners aren’t sure if we are finished yet, which is a distinct difference from what I consider to be the East Coast verbal punch at the end of a sentence, or the Southern, Ma’am and Sir. It’s interesting to think about what those small differences mean for each region.

  15. December 12, 2013    

    This sounds like a fascinating process. Never really thought of what went into producing audio books, so I’m glad you shared your experiences. :-)

  16. December 12, 2013    

    I fumble my way though a lot of it, Dana.

    I’m not native to PNW, Tyrean, but there is a way they talk. I haven’t been able to pinpoint what makes it different, but with a native talker I don’t have to worry about that.

    Most of the work is on the narrator’s end, Misha.

  17. December 12, 2013    

    I admire your skill in finding out about these kinds of opportunities, I learn so much for your experiences! I didn’t know the 50/50 split was a possibility, how wonderful. It has to be exciting to be able to hear someone reading your story like that.

    Congrats to River!

  18. December 13, 2013    

    I love that you take the plunge and share your experience so we can sale in on your wings, without diving in alone. :) Although, I’m no where near you in sales/popularity, so I won’t need to do it for a while. 50/50 sound like a great idea too.

    I know nothing of podcasts, sorry :(

    Have a great weekend. X

  19. December 13, 2013    

    Yeah, audio can be expensive. You’ve got to pay someone to read outloud for many hours, depending on the length of story, it can be very long to read it outloud.

    So, the 50/50 thing sounds like a good deal. Unless you get a million downloads, then it was a rip-off. But you do what you have to. I’ve considered putting up some of my longer work as an audiobook to (probably through podiobooks) where I do my own reading. I’ve tried short segments and think I can do a pretty good voice for short period of time, it’s just hard to keep it up for the whole length of a novel.

  20. December 13, 2013    

    How interesting! Thanks for letting me in on a little behind-the-scenes world of audiobooks. And congrats to River!

    It’s been a long time since I listened to a book. I have a couple of your Backworlds ebooks though.

    Have a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year, Mary.

  21. December 14, 2013    

    I love a good audio book and it was fun to learn about your process. Once you find narrators you like it is good to stick with them! :) I had no idea about the 50/50 split- but it sounds like a great option. Audio books make me slow down my reading and I appreciate books in a different way.

    Diamonds and Dust is everywhere today! Awesome! Wishing River and you the best of luck. :)

  22. December 14, 2013    

    Hi Mary, Love your blog so I’ve nominated you for the Liebster awart. Check it out here:

  23. December 14, 2013    

    Haha, should have proof-read that first. It’s an award, not an awart!

  24. December 15, 2013    

    It sounds like the right people were chosen to read your work.

    Congrats to River.