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What AudioBooks Are and How They Can Help You As An Author.

What AudioBooks Are and How They Can Help You As An Author.

Audiobooks are gaining popularity and fast becoming a commonly-used medium of education and entertainment. The target market is constantly expanding, with both younger and older listeners enjoying the benefits of the audio format. The evolution of digital technology and related online platforms is making audiobooks more and more accessible, and at an increasingly affordable rate. So where does South Africa stand in embracing this relatively new medium of consuming books? 

 

WHAT IS AN AUDIOBOOK?

The audiobook has been around for many years and has evolved along with technology. From Books-on-tape, to Compact Discs and now digital Mp3 audiobooks. The principle of the audiobook essentially remains the same. A narrator will sit in a sound recording studio and read from a book into a microphone. The sound engineer will record the voice, edit it, mix and master it and produce the final product. Nowadays the final format is usually Mp3 audio files that can then be played back on numerous devices that can support Mp3 audio.

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Guest Post - Why Your eBook Should Be Professionally Edited (and how to reduce the bill!)

Guest Post - Why Your eBook Should Be Professionally Edited (and how to reduce the bill!)

 

Self-publishing is a new trend that gives professional publishers nightmares, and rightly so. Let's face it, how many of us would ever get our books published if we had to go the traditional route? Did you know that Sylvester Stallone could not find a company to produce his first Rocky movie? Likewise, many now-famous authors were first rejected by publishers:  Agatha Christie is the highest selling author of all time, second only to William Shakespeare, but she was rejected for 5 years before landing a publishing deal.

In more modern times, we all know J.K. Rowling's story. And Dr. Seuss, who has more than 300 million sales, and is the 9th best-selling fiction writer of all times, was also rejected at first. The list goes on and it goes to show that many of us have great stories inside of us that, without self-publishing, would never be shared!

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7 Reasons to Publish an eBook

7 Reasons to Publish an eBook

By Jim Wawro

 

Should you publish an ebook? Following the traditional publication of two print books, the self-publication of a third print book, and the publication of seven ebooks, here are seven reasons I recommend for publishing an ebook: 1. Ever since Gutenberg (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Johannes_Gutenberg ), the publishing industry has effectively monopolized what books the world reads. Why? Producing printed books from written words requires capital and the expert knowledge of many businesses, including print manufacturing, book marketing, and distribution. However, this key intermediary between reader and writer is no longer exclusive. 

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Why eBooks Can Be Better

Some Background on the Major eBook Formats

In today's world there are eBooks have two major formats: EPUB and MOBI. EPUB is an open source format compatible with most eReading devices and software (Apple and Android Smartphones, PC, Mac, etc.) There are a wide variety of apps that are usually free to reading the EPUB format. Adobe Digital Editions works well for PC or Mac, iBooks is great for iPhones and iPads, and Moon+ Reader and Mantano Reader are decent Android apps. EPUB is also the format distributed by all vendors (Nook, Smashwords, Kobo, etc.) with the exception of Amazon, which leads us to… The MOBI format is owned by Amazon and is used for Amazon-type devices such as the Kindle eReader, Kindle Fire tablet, and apps. Even though it is a different format, it is very similar to the EPUB format. The best way to make a MOBI eBook is to start with an open source EPUB eBook and convert it using Amazon's proprietary program KindleGen.

 

eBooks are not Print Books

A common misconception among publishers and authors is that an eBook format should mimic its print cousin as closely as possible. This is often a recipe for disaster. The content of a print book is designed to be read in a fixed layout (e.g. a 5"x8" paperback). However, eBooks must be readable on a wide variety of devices: from a large PC monitor to a small smartphone. Therefore, the content of an eBook needs to be "reflowable" so that it can adjust to the size of the viewing screen that the reader is using. Things like complex tables, images placed next to text, and background images may cause problems on eBooks and create a poor reading experience if not handled properly.

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