I started contributing to LibriVox early in 2006 immediately after I heard about it, because I like reading out loud. I think I do a pretty good job of interpreting an author. At the end of 2010, nearly five years later, I've accumulated a lot of practice in narrating - 56 solo books on LibriVox and a good deal more contributed to group efforts. I've progressed through four or five recording setups, trying to improve the quality of my sound.
Along about Book #20, I began to wonder if I could transition to a professional position. After all, my books were being downloaded in good numbers and I was receiving gratifying remarks in feedback. In late 2009, I was asked by iPublish Press of Canada to do "My Problem With Doors." LibriVox never criticizes its readers - that's a real draw for people who want to record their favorite books, to know they won't be catching adverse commentary if they don't live up to someone's standards! Since iPublish Press proposed to pay me for narrating their book, they had every right to editorially comment on every sentence I sent them. Despite the change in standards, the experience was a positive one, and I was pleased to know that I could make editors happy who are in business to make money.
This Fall, I began two new forays into professional audiobooks. Mike Vendetti, a LibriVox contributor who also runs "Audiobooks by Mike Vendetti" and sells them on Audible.com, asked me to read for him. My first book, "The Defiant Agents" by Andre Norton, was finished in November, but through some miscue at Audible.com has not appeared for sale yet. They've promised to fix that.
I also was invited to be part of a new organization, Iambik.com. The founder is Hugh McGuire, the same fellow who started LibriVox. His business idea was to partner with print publishers to create audiobooks that normally would never be produced under the industry's typical business arrangements. By making audiobook production a profit-sharing exercise between Iambik and a publisher, no one has to "front" any money - all the participants share directly in the sales. Since our output is digital files, we don't have to buy supplies or keep up with inventories.
I'm currently reading "Suicide Casanova" by Arthur Nersesian, with a promise date of January 31. This will be one in a batch of crime stories to be released together. Hugh promises we'll be doing campaigns in several genres, so we'll be seeing a deal of variety over time.
I plan to continue devoting the major part of my creative time to these new professional endeavors... although I will still keep my hand in at LibriVox!