Audiobooks? By Camy Tang

I recently came back from a writers’ conference where I’d sat in on a session about having audiobooks done of your books. It was really neat to see the process, especially since I listen to audiobooks a lot and am hoping to have my self-published novellas made into audiobooks soon.

My question for you guys is, how many of you listen to audiobooks?

If you don’t listen to them at all, I want to know. Why not? Price? You don’t like hearing the stories told in a different voice than the one in your head?

If you listen to them all the time, I want to know. What do you like about them? How do you pick your audiobooks? Do you only read certain genres in audiobooks?

Where do you listen to audiobooks? I usually listen to mine in the car, while folding laundry, while cooking, and while I’m exercising.

How often do you buy audiobooks? I usually only buy one a month, maybe two, unless there’s a really great sale on audiobooks at Audible.com, in which case I’ll buy more. I think I buy 15-18 audiobooks a year, but I buy them almost exclusively at Audible.com, where I have a subscription. The prices make audiobooks more affordable for me.

I’m curious about this because although I listen to audiobooks regularly, I don’t know anyone else in my circle of friends who does. Although to be honest, not many of my friends actually read fiction. 😛

So please weigh in! I’d like to know.

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About Camy Tang/Camille Elliot

Camy writes romantic suspense as Camy Tang and Regency romance as USA Today bestselling author Camille Elliot. She is a staff worker for her church youth group and leads one of the Sunday worship teams. Visit her websites at http://www.camytang.com and http://www.camilleelliot.com to read free short stories and subscribe to her quarterly newsletter.
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8 Responses to Audiobooks? By Camy Tang

  1. I love to be read to! Except for reading in bed at night, I am almost exclusively an audiobook person. I go through 3-6 of them a week. Because I do professional dressmaking and quiltmaking, I listen to audiobooks while I work. I also listen while I clean house, drive, and at the gym.

    I get almost all of my audiobooks from the library’s overdrive or OneClickDigital sites, so I download them from there, without leaving home. They have many thousands of books. Sometimes, I look on amazon to see if they have inexpensive kindle books that are “whispersync ready,” so I can buy the kindle book and the audiobook together, usually for a low price.

    I prefer to listen to Christian mystery/romantic suspense, and it’s hard to browse for that in Amazon or the library’s website, so I search by author name. I find new authors online, usually recommended on other author’s facebook pages or blogs (like this one). I sometimes read secular books in audio, but I find that I have a lower tolerance for sex scenes and bad language when I hear it spoken directly in my ears via earbuds or in my home through speakers. When I come across those in written books, I can skim over them. So it’s “safer” to stick with Christian fiction, where I know I won’t be surprised by a string of blasphemous words.

    I read authors in “clumps” – if I find a story I like, I read/listen to as many of her books as I can find. If the author is unfamiliar, I sometimes check out her information and reviews on Amazon before I buy or borrow an audiobook. If she promotes other authors, I will look at those. (Social media matters!)

    Readers make or break a book. You can write the best story in history, but if the reader is bad, I’m not likely to buy any other books in the series (especially if the author is new to me.) There is a very popular author whose reader makes her young-ish heroine sound like a quavery 60-year-old. I check periodically to see if she has changed readers, but she has not, so I don’t get those. You can always tell a professional actor from an amateur, and author-read books are seldom good. Writing and reading are not the same gift.

    I find that mystery and suspense novels are almost always better with a male reader. There have been a few exceptions, but not many. Men tend to give female characters a good mature (but not old) voice, but women frequently have trouble not sounding “breathy” with exciting action scenes or creating solid manly voices. Sometimes it sounds like they are speaking through gritted teeth. Again, there are exceptions.

    Romances, on the other hand, almost always better with female readers. Sexist, I know, but there you are…

    If I am in a quiet environment, I listen to audiobooks through speakers. If I am running the sewing machine or vacuum cleaner or moving around a lot, I use an mp3 player. I prefer the Sansa Clip, which is a very small mp3 player that (obviously) clips onto clothing and isn’t bulky. It doesn’t take much memory to hold audiobooks; I can put 5 unabridged audiobooks onto a 1g player.

    I hope I answered all your questions. 🙂

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  2. I never buy or borrow audiobooks but not because of price or convenience. It is because of me – I cannot stand to have anything talking directly into my ears. I have never used the earbuds that came with my iPhone and do not use the headphones given out on a plane. I had to skip one book in a series because it was only available as an audiobook at the library. I am a retired senior so have the time to actually read print or e-books.

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  3. gravesok says:

    I have never been one that likes to be read to so have only listened to an audiobook once.

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  4. Veronica says:

    I just started listening to audiobooks regularly about a year and a half ago. I’ve been listening to all genres, usually in my car, though I don’t have much of a commute so it takes weeks to finish one. I have listened to one at home while cooking, but usually I have books I need to review so I don’t have much time to listen at home. I tend to like the male voices better because of some of the reasons Cathe mentioned. If I don’t like the reader, I would probably just try to read the book myself. I get mine from the library because I don’t have a lot of disposable income and don’t reread many books. I usually pick whatever Christian fiction is at the library at the time unless I’m reading a series, then I order it in. I decided to start listening to audios because there’s just so much Christian fiction out there and how will I ever get to it all! I have listened to a few others, such as The Help with 4 different readers, which was awesome.

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