“Where is the audiobook?” is the second-most asked question I get from readers, right after, “who the heck are you?” I love audiobooks. They make up about thirty percent of my yearly reading list (I count them as reading… fight me). Thus, it made good sense for me to pitch Nyra snout-first into the MP3 world. A friend loaned me a Blue Yeti Microphone, I learned the basics of Audacity, and got to work.
You’ve never heard so much swearing.
Nyra doesn’t lend itself to out-loud reading, at least not for me and my self-ascribed dyslexia. They are my words, and yet I couldn’t read them. Every other sentence was a stumble. A single chapter took days to record, edit, and refine, and even so, the final product was subpar. I needed a professional, one who could machete through the mayhem. My fellow indies recommended the Audiobook Creation Exchange (ACX) where I could find a reader for a split royalty. Harkening back to my first FAQ, my expectations were low. The Roy Dotrices (A Song of Ice and Fire) and Patrick Lawlors (My Antonia) of the universe had contracts with far more prestigious authors. At best, this would be a passion project between two amateurs doing their best with what they had.
In a few days of auditioning, I found my Patrick Lawlor, or rather, he found me. Andrew Pond (yes, his name looks very good on a water-themed cover) crafted a soundbite that felt like a piece of theater. He did the accents, he did the voices, he had urgency, and he had patience. Whether his storytelling abilities came from his career as an actor/playwrite or an innate ear for narration, Mr. Pond did, what I'd deemed, the impossible.
Collaborating with him was joyous and at a breakneck pace. He turned out top-notch chapters one after another, finishing MONTHS before the deadline. He incorporated my edits but brought his own flavor to the production, and by flavor, I mean entire recipes. There are over twenty speaking parts in Volume I. Mr. Pond came up with voices for ALL of them. Let me repeat that: ALL OF THEM, even characters with a couple of lines. Much like the D'ysquiths in ‘A Gentleman’s Guide to Love and Murder’, he bounced seamlessly between many people (er, dragons). It’s transfixing to the point it makes me a little jealous. As I said, theater. If I’m ever in Chicago, I’ll be bee-lining to his theater company to catch a show.
I won't go so far as to say my book is great, but I can assure you the audiobook is. Very great. D’ysquith great. All of that credit goes to Mr. Pond’s passion and perseverance.
The release is tentative, but I expect it will be available in the next few weeks. You’ll find it on iTunes, Amazon, and Audible (for which your first download is free... and we still get paid). I can’t wait to share it with you.
Please visit Andrew Pond at his website and twitter.
Maple trees and lots of sap,