Releasing audio chapters on Youtube

I saw a post on the Facebook Writing Gals community from Victoria Lieske, who has self published many sweet romances, about how she has been using Youtube to build her readership. She already had a readership for her novels, but she found that when she posted the full audio book on Youtube, her readership grew and her sales increased. I found this intriguing. It seems counter intuitive to give away your book (albeit just the audio version) for free, but then, if someone really enjoys it in this format, it makes sense that they might go away and download the ebook and then read it for themselves. I’m not much of an audio book listener, but it was really interesting looking at people’s comments on the posts. They said things like ‘it really helps me to wind down at the end of the day to put on an audio book’, and there’s clearly a wide community of people who are using Youtube for this. Victoria commented that in future, she would release her audio on Youtube first before publishing, in order to build interest. So, I thought I’d have a go myself.

I’ve been thinking for a while that I’d like to self-publish my romcom, ‘Bell Time’, and I’ve also got audio equipment that I use for podcasting. My husband kindly leant me a tripod and I used Audacity to record myself reading the chapters. I used Canva to create an image, and then he exported the file as an MP4 which I could then upload to Youtube. It’s a bit of a learning curve, but so far I’ve posted the first chapter. I also used an ipad to record a short intro video as well so that people can see who I am and hear more of the bigger picture of what I’m doing.

Like with anything new, it’s really daunting! But I feel like I’ve got to the stage where I don’t want my work to just stay hidden in a document that no one can read anymore. I’ve been writing for several years and I do enjoy the process itself, but it would just increase the joy so much more to be able to share the stories with others. Please go over to Youtube and subscribe to my channel to stay updated, and let me know what you think!

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