Okay, I submitted my manuscript. I found a Narrator. I signed a payment contract. Now what? Now we wait…and wait…and wait.
As the author, my job was mostly done. I created a new world in which certain characters lived. Now came the time to let them be brought to life by the Narrator. The first thing I received was the official “FIRST 15 MINUTES.” This is a requirement so the Narrator and Author can determine if the speed, mood, intonations, etc. are correct. This is so important. The Narrator will base the rest of the book on what is set here, so it was up to me to speak up or forever have my book follow the pattern in that first 15 minutes. Julie T. Kinn absolutely nailed my first 15 so I quickly approved it.
In my book I have a character that speaks but isn’t physically present and I needed her voice to sound “otherworldly” so Julie sent me multiple examples of ways to do her voice. I picked the one that sounded most like what I heard in my head when I wrote her character and Julie ran with it.
In a short period of time, Julie posted about 4 or 5 chapters for me to preview. I really had to watch out for the whole “Someone’s reading my book” thing, but I was amazed at how well she understood my characters.
Well before the Deadline, she posted all the chapters of the book and I previewed each one of them. If I found an issue, all I had to do was send Julie a messaged followed by the chapter and the timestamp. She promptly took care of the issue and we moved on.
When the recording was completed, I accepted it and fulfilled the payment part of the contract.
It was November 20 when ACX acknowledged that the files were in for quality review. They said it would take 10-14 business days to finish review. YAY! I couldn’t wait. But I had to. In fact, when the 14 days had come and gone, I got worried. I contacted ACX and they said that the file was under review. So, waiting…waiting…waiting. So 28 days after my files were submitted my status changed from IN REVIEW to SENT TO RETAIL. Yup, I squealed a little bit.
ACX says, once a book is sent to retail, it takes about a week for the retail department to set up the metadata and pricing, etc. So, to my calendar again. December 17 – Sent to Retail. Wait, that would mean it would be available on Christmas Eve, just in time for people with Amazon gift cards to buy after getting their new phones, tablets, music players and computers. Yay!
No. Christmas Eve came and went. Christmas Day came and went. Boxing Day came and went. I was so disheartened. Why was my book taking so long? I submitted it in November to a process that was supposed to only take 17 days I ended up finally having my audiobook Live on New Year’s Eve – 42 days after it was submitted.
My Journey took 86 days from my first call for auditions to the end with half of it waiting, not on production, but on ACX. But I will be fair, the wait is the only bad thing about it. Everything from the ease of contacting ACX with questions to uploading the manuscript to listening to auditions was simple and easy. In the end, I have a great product.
If you are considering ACX for your book, understand that it is a process, but a good one. One little note. ACX will not produce physical copies of your audiobook at all. Distribution is through Audible, Amazon, and iBooks only. So if you were hoping to give a copy to your aunt for her birthday, she’ll need to be able to download the Audible app and access it through them.
I hope this helps you on your journey.