Guest Post: ListenUp

ListenUp Indie Pub

Over the last several years, audiobooks have gained a lot of momentum in the publishing industry. In addition to offering ebooks and print editions, indie authors should consider also producing an audiobook version of their work.

According to the Audio Publishers Association, there has been a 24.5% increase in audiobook revenue in 2018. Audiobook listening is on the rise, as supported by data from The Infinite Dial 2019, which shows 50% of Americans – age 12 and older have listened to an audiobook. This is the first time that audiobooks’ consumer penetration has reached the 50% mark, up from 44% in 2018.

Audiobook Production

Indie Authors often choose to hire a production studio to create their audiobook because they want a high quality finished product. They also want to retain their audio rights, and to choose where their audiobook is distributed.

Audiobook production studios like ListenUp, offer full-service production, meaning the cost should include casting and hiring a narrator, engineering, editing, quality control, and mastering. Authors keep all their rights and are included in major decision-making, both on the creative side of things and the business side of things. Creatively, authors are included in the casting process, working with Casting to find the ideal narrator and discussing pronunciation, accents, and voice characteristics.

Authors are sent a selection of Narrators to choose from. When they’ve selected the ones they’re are interested in, we then have these Narrators audition by reading a few pages from your first chapter. Once you’ve picked your narrator, recording begins. Once the recording is finished, authors are provided with the completed audio files to sell as they please. There is usually a 4-6 week turnaround for the whole process.

Audiobook Distribution offers both production and worldwide retail and library distribution for your audiobook. Authors earn 80% of the Royalties and ListenUp receives 20%.

For authors looking to work with, all you need to do is fill out a submission form at
ListenUp then contacts you to discuss your needs, and send you narrator samples to choose from. You then will get auditions, chose your narrator and we’ll move forward with the recording. The cost of producing an audiobook depends on the length of the book and is priced by the finished hour. You can figure a narrator will read somewhere around 9,000 words an hour. So a 70,000-word book will end up being approximately 7.7 hours long.

ListenUp is an audiobook production and distribution company located in Atlanta, Georgia. The company was founded in 2008 by CEO Chris Fogg, who had a career in production in New York City before moving to Atlanta to start an audiobook production company. ListenUp has 11 recording studios, working with over 150 narrators. They’ve produced thousands of titles for Audible, Macmillan, Penguin Random House, Hachette, and also many audiobooks for Indie Authors.

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