If you‘re reading this, you probably already know how powerful audiobooks are.
They‘re the perfect way to expand your book‘s audience, connect with new readers, and earn more money. Audiobooks are one of the fastest growing areas of publishing, and audiobook sales have shown double-digit increases every year for the last decade.
Audiobooks are the way of the future.
But many indie Authors don‘t want the headache of creating their own audiobooks. Finding the right narrator, sound engineer, equipment, recording studio, distributor—it’s all so complicated and time consuming. Especially if you‘re a first-time Author.
The good news is that it doesn’t have to be so hard.
Scribe Audiobooks offers a done-for-you service. Once you hand your manuscript to us, we’ll take care of every step of the recording, post-production, and distribution process. You don’t have to lift a finger.
Here’s what that means for Authors:
- No stress.
- No steep learning curve.
- No buying expensive recording equipment.
- No scrambling to find independent contractors you can trust.
- No pressuring audiobook narrators and engineers to meet deadlines.
- No arguing over quality control.
- No monkeying around with audio files.
- No confusion about how audiobook sales and distribution work.
We simplify the hard work of audiobook publishing and create high-quality books that retailers and audiobook listeners love.
Below, I’ll walk you through our process, explain what’s included, and answer questions we frequently get from Authors.
What’s Included in Our Done-for-You Audiobook Service?
Scribe Audiobook’s done-for-you service includes everything you need to have a retail-ready audiobook in a matter of months.
And when we say everything, we mean everything. It‘s all included.
We‘ll find the right narrator for you or coach you to narrate your own book, and then we‘ll record, produce, edit, and distribute your book to the world.
Here’s what we offer.
We Record and Produce Your Audiobook
When you imagine your book being read to millions of people, whose voice do you hear?
If it’s your voice, you‘ll work with an experienced audiobook producer who will prepare you for the process so you can give the best performance possible.
If it’s someone else’s voice—the better option for busy Authors—we’ll match you with the perfect talent from our pool of experienced audiobook narrators.
Our team will handle all the recording on state-of-the-art studio equipment, so your book will be clear, smooth, and Audible-ready. You won’t have to worry about background noises, mouth pops, or reverb.
Our Team Edits and Finalizes the Recording
Every Scribe Audiobook goes through a detailed post-production process with 2 engineers: an editing and mastering engineer and a quality control engineer. They will ensure your audiobook sounds flawless before it reaches listeners’ ears.
Most major retailers have specific requirements for the audiobook format, and our engineers verify that every audio file meets those specifications.
We’ll do all the heavy lifting for you, but don’t worry—we’ll keep you informed about what’s happening during the audiobook production process. We‘ll be in contact every step of the way, and you‘ll have ample opportunity to review your book before it’s published.
We Distribute the Audiobook to Over 50 Platforms
Once you have your high-quality audiobook in hand, it’s time to distribute it to the world.
We’ve teamed up with Author’s Republic, which handles large-scale distribution to over 50 platforms: iTunes, Amazon, Audible, Spotify—if you can name them, your book will probably be there.
Our team will edit your book cover to meet audiobook specifications. Once your book goes live, we’ll also ensure the description, metadata, and other details are accurate across all platforms.
Because you’ll be working with a single distributor, you can easily track your audiobook sales from one easy-to-use dashboard. Better yet, your royalties will be paid from a single source instead of trickling in from dozens of outlets.
How Scribe’s Process Works
We have a proven done-for-you process to source the best professional narrator for your book. We’ll record, produce, and distribute your audiobook on all popular platforms where audiobooks are sold.
Here’s how that process works.
Step 1. Preparation
The first step in your journey is identifying how you want your audiobook narrator to sound. The more specifics you can give us, the better.
We have a network comprised of thousands of experienced narrators. We’ll find the one who can bring your book’s voice to life.
Before recording, we will run your manuscript through Pozotron’s Pronunciation Research service to flag any words that might cause pronunciation difficulties. We pair each of these words with a recorded pronunciation, so our team can refer to those files during recording and post-production.
The Author will have an opportunity to listen to these pronunciations and change any that they disagree with. Recording does not begin until the Author signs off on the pronunciation research.
Step 2. Recording
This is the moment when your audiobook starts coming together. Your professional narrator will already be familiar with the recording studio, so they quickly settle into a comfort zone.
One hour of finished recording roughly equals 9,000 words of a printed book. But creating that hour of finished content typically takes 2-3 hours for a professional narrator.
Your audiobook producer and sound engineer ensure the pronunciation, pacing, and quality are perfect. But even the best narrators will need re-takes.
Most audiobooks take 2-5 recording sessions, depending on the book’s length. This part of the audiobook production process usually lasts 1-2 weeks.
Step 3. Post-Production
After recording the audio, your book enters the post-production phase. An editing engineer will listen to the recording and adjust the pacing if necessary. They’ll remove any distracting noises, even the volume levels, and smooth any edited transitions.
Then a quality control engineer takes over. They’re the second fail-safe for your book. They’ll catch any imperfections that made it past the editing engineer. Our goal is to create a high-quality audiobook that’s as seamless as possible.
Both engineers will mark any audio flaws that can’t be fixed as a pickup. We will record, cut in, and master any necessary pickup audio before sending the audiobook to the Author for review.
Once post-production is complete, you will have the chance to listen to your audiobook. If you need to make any changes, we will schedule the additional pickup recording sessions and re-master those as well.
Step 4. Launch
By this point, you’ll have a book ready for even the keenest-eared Audible listeners. You’re ready to start selling audiobooks.
Going through our distribution partner, Author’s Republic, we will upload your retail-ready audio files. Author’s Republic does a check on their end to make sure the files meet distribution specifications.
Once the files are approved, your audiobook is sent to over 50 different platforms. It typically goes live within 5 weeks.
About 2 months after the book goes live, you will be able to check your audiobook sales. Author’s Republic collects each platform’s results and compiles them for easy access.
What Do I Need to Get Started?
Hiring Scribe to make an audio version of your book takes minimal effort from you. All we need are the following 3 things:
- Your completed, print-ready manuscript. We can’t get started on your audiobook if it’s still a work-in-progress. Your print book, Kindle book, and audiobook should match. If your book contains charts, graphs, or other visual aids, you might have to adjust a few phrases for the audio version, but by and large, your book should be consistent across formats.
- Your narrator wishlist. To match you with the perfect narrator, we need to know whose voice could bring your story to life. Do you want a male or female narrator? Someone with gravitas or levity? A deep voice or a higher-pitched one? A narrator with an Irish accent or a Southern drawl? Someone familiar with your industry? Or someone especially skilled at multi-voice storytelling?
- A signed agreement. You’ll see that there are no hidden fees in our agreement. Everything about our service truly is done for you, from start to finish. (There are a few special cases where we charge additional fees: if you want a celebrity to narrate your book, include music in your book, or need additional coaching services. But these fees will be clearly laid out in the agreement before we begin.)
We can take it from there.
Will I Still Own the Copyrights to My Audiobook?
If you‘re a self-published Author, you own 100 percent of the rights to your book—even in audiobook format.
We will never claim any ownership over your book, and you can use it in any way you see fit.
That’s one of the reasons we don’t—and will never—take Author royalties. Royalty share programs often work against the Author’s best interests. They put the focus entirely on book sales, when there are many other reasons Authors write books (and other ways books can make money).
We want Authors to have control over their book instead of holding them over the fire with a sales quota.
Scribe charges Authors an upfront fee for our services and never expects audio rights in return.
When it comes to book distribution, you will need to make some decisions about how to exercise your rights. For example, Amazon’s Audiobook Creation Exchange (ACX) offers Authors a higher royalty percentage if they give ACX exclusive rights to sell the audiobook.
But you are the rights holder, and that’s your choice to make. We can help you make an informed decision, but we will never decide for you.
Can I Still Narrate My Own Audiobook?
Yes, even if you choose Scribe’s done-for-you service, you can narrate your own book. We’ll help you get the most out of your performance.
A Publishing Manager will plan your recording sessions around your busy schedule.
Your first day in the studio will be spent becoming familiar with the recording environment, settling into a comfort zone, and perfecting the voice for your book.
A director will sit in throughout your recording sessions to ensure the narration hits its marks. We work with the best directors in the business to produce the best results.
But before you decide that you want to narrate your own audiobook, you may want to consider the following reasons why many first-time Authors choose to use a professional narrator instead.
First, professional narrators know how to hold an audience’s attention for 5 or 6 straight hours. Most Authors haven’t developed that skill set. Even if you’re used to giving keynote speeches or appearing on podcasts, you might find that narrating an audiobook is more challenging than you anticipated.
Second, first-time narrators require more studio time. While a professional narrator can usually complete 1 finished hour of content in 2 hours, it often takes Authors 3 or 4 hours to narrate the same amount of content. If you have a busy schedule, it may be difficult to pack hours of recording into a 1-2 week period.
Whatever you decide, we’re here to help you along the way.
How Long Does the Done-for-You Audiobook Process Take?
The total process takes 3-4 months, regardless of whether you narrate your own audiobook or work with a professional narrator.
Here’s how that time typically breaks down:
- Recording takes place within 1 month after the narrator’s audition date.
- The post-production team takes 2-2.5 weeks to prepare retail-ready files.
- Authors have 1-2 weeks to review their files.
- It can take 4-5 weeks between the time we send the book to distribution and the time it goes live on retailers’ platforms.
While we tend to stick to this 3-4 month timeline, sometimes Authors need to slow the process. For example, some Authors want more than a week to choose their narrator or review their audiobook files. We‘ve also had cases where an Author wants to narrate their own audiobook but can’t find sufficient time until a later date.
We maintain steady communication with Authors about the production timeline to ensure the pace fits their needs.
Who Should Publish an Audiobook?
Here’s who should publish an audiobook with our done-for-you service:
- Authors who have completed a non-fiction or fiction book
- Authors who want to tap into the largest audience possible
- Authors who are comfortable telling their own story or who want to hire a professional narrator
- Authors looking to stay on the cutting edge of technology and accessibility
- Authors who want all the benefits of an audiobook but don’t want to invest time and energy into a DIY approach
- Authors who want a reliable, trustworthy all-in-one service with proven results
Here’s who shouldn’t publish an audiobook with our service:
- Authors who are only looking for an audiobook marketing service
- Authors who already have all the skills, tools, and experience to make their own audiobooks (although, we realize that sometimes just because you can do something doesn’t mean you want to)
Here’s the truth: we recommend that almost all non-fiction or fiction Authors publish an audio version of their book alongside the printed and eBook versions. Over 45 percent of readers prefer audiobooks to physical books, and it’s imperative that you reach them.
Let Scribe Help You Create Your Perfect Audiobook
Hundreds of Authors can tell you: we take the hassle out of the audiobook publishing process.
We don’t want Authors to waste time, money, and emotional energy on the audiobook production process. That’s why we offer white-glove treatment to make it as painless as possible.
Not only will we help your book reach the widest possible audience, but we will also create a high-quality product that reflects your professionalism, builds your credibility, and touches readers’ minds and hearts.