Category: Audio

The Audio Channel


 

Reading aloud: merging audio and text just got a lot easier

You may know that the modern EPUB3 standard has an inbuilt ability to hold audio and video, but one of the most intriguing aspects of EPUB3 that you may have overlooked is ‘Read-aloud’. This technique, sometimes called ‘media overlays’, combines a spoken audio track with accurate timing information usually used to highlight words on the page in time with the spoken audio.

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skills for publishing

Audio rights making waves

This is a guest post from Tom Chalmers, Managing Director at IPR License.

It’s a bit of a contradiction in terms but one of the fastest growing areas of the rights and licensing sector is also the one which we arguably hear the least from. Anecdotal evidence suggests that the audiobook industry is currently worth somewhere in the region of $2.5bn to $2.6bn per year and growing. However, the amount of rights business being written often goes under the radar.

Here at IPR License we saw consistent, and substantial, demand for audio rights throughout 2014. This time last year we reported that licensing demand for international audio rights rose by 32 per cent in Q2 2014. This was largely based on publisher to publisher figures and whilst this business continues to grow, more internal analysis shows that enquiries for audio rights for self-published works have more than doubling (58 per cent) in the first half of 2015, when compared to H2 2014 figures.

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David Hewson releases new novel exclusively as audiobook

Popular mystery author David Hewson will this week release his latest novel, The Flood. His fans, however, will not be able to read it – at least in the strictest sense of the word – until some time next year, because the novel will initially see release exclusively as an audiobook, with print editions to follow at an as yet unspecified date. Further than that, The Independent reports, Hewson has intimated he may eventually move to writing exclusively for audiobooks.

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Simon Callow’s audiobook for dogs is now a thing that exists

 

The above is video footage of Simon Callow – who, up to this point, has been most widely acclaimed for his performances as Charles Dickens and his biographies of Orson Welles – reading Teddy & Stanley’s Tall Tale by Laura Quinn. You might think ‘aw, that’s nice, Callow’s gone a bit Jackanory – y’know, for the kids!’ for about six seconds, until the esteemed actor intones the words ‘this story is about a very, very good dog – just like you’, and you realise that this is either what they would have played over the speakers in Dickensian workhouses had they the technology, or is, in fact, the world’s first audiobook designed specifically with dogs in mind.

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Bardowl launches streaming audiobook subscription service

Bardowl App Icon In a move that will either be hailed as bringing publishing in line with the demands of a perma-streaming society or derided as pandering to a generation increasingly unaccustomed to having to pay for entertainment, Bath company Bardowl has launched a Spotify-style service allowing users to listen to as many audiobooks as they like for a fixed monthly fee of £9.99. Accessed via a free app for iPhone and iPad, subscribers are able to stream any of the company’s library of audiobooks on the go, with unlimited access to all available titles.

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Can Audio Books Be Cool?

I’m not going to lie – I’ve always thought audio books were lame as hell.  The disappointing nephew of the hardback; the ugly duckling of the literary landscape. They bring back memories of long car rides to boring towns when my mum would put on a tape of some Victorian period drama read by an artist’s rendering of Jane Austen. Invariably I would hear half of it and then miss some and then hear some more of it and the leaps in narrative would piss me off and the English accent would clash with the Australian landscape, and the cases for the tapes were ugly and would get under my feet  – a car accident waiting to happen. 

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Top 5 digital promo tools: Part 1 – Audio

In an era where you’re competing with umpteen websites, Facebook feeds, Twitter streams and mobile apps – promoting new books and publications can be somewhat daunting.

Over the course of the next few days, I’ll show you a few tools that are highly effective, low cost (or free) ways of promoting books and authors, engaging with readers and generally doing all you can to sell more books.

The first area we’ll look at is audio. Often overlooked in the rush to create YouTube videos or trailers; audio is still hugely popular. I can honestly say that there hasn’t been a project that I’ve worked on where the number of audio streams accessed or number of podcasts downloaded hasn’t ended up surprising me and my clients alike. It’s definitely worth thinking using a tool like Soundcloud as part of your promotional efforts.

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