Downloaded and Listened to a Good Book Lately?

Scott Sigler - The Founding Father of the Podcast Novel!

Scott Sigler - One of the Founding Fathers of the Podcast Novel!

There’s an interesting article in last month’s edition of Time magazine about podcast novels. Starting with Scott Sigler in 2005ish, some authors are creating free downloadable audio versions of their books. The strategy has paid off big time for some authors, leading to some very lucrative publishing deals. Is it the wave of the future? Here’s an interesting bit about Sigler in the Time’s article:

Scott Sigler of San Francisco also missed out on getting his first novel published, with a deal collapsing in late 2001. But like Hutchins, he built a big Internet fan base on novel podcasting, which led to a 2007 deal with The Crown Publishing Company (a division of Random House), one believed to be in the hundreds of thousands of dollars. Sigler reached a milestone this month by cracking the New York Times Hardcover Fiction bestseller list with Contagious, a first for an author emerging from the podcast genre. The print run for Contagious is 80,000 copies and it has made the bestseller list despite Sigler’s getting his reluctant publisher to allow him to put out PDF files and podcasts of chapters of the book for free on his website. So far, he has podcast eight chapters.

You can read the rest of the article here: Podcasting Your Novel: Publishing’s Next Wave?

So, what do you think? Is the podcast novel the wave of the future, or a passing fad?

4 thoughts on “Downloaded and Listened to a Good Book Lately?

  1. This is sort of interesting as long as you’re not looking to cash in. I mean, why not, right? You are getting the story out there. I’ve always dug a well-read audio book, and I actually would get into the narrative voice of my own novel. I might try a couple “episodes” just to see what happens. I mean, it’s easy enough to record.

  2. The strange thing is these authors did cash in. The free downloads lead to print sales.

  3. It’s always good to try new things, BJ. I’m just glad that the original 5 guys that did this (Sigler was one of those) committed themselves to seeing it through. If they had only decided to record and release a couple of episodes… well. We’d not be where we are today.

    But as with anything in life, your mileage may vary. The successful authors doing this work their self-promoting tales off even after the production of episodes is over. For many — not just Sigler — the payoff happens. Sometimes it’s book sales. Sometimes it’s paid writing gigs. And sometimes it’s knowing that thousands (yes, thousands) of people experience the work. Work that would have otherwise languished in a drawer somewhere unread by more than a handful of people.

    Here’s to the visionaries who work hard to make things happen.

  4. I should point out that is the delivery point for Sigler and Hutchins (the two authors mentioned in the article).

    Evo, who were the original five guys?

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