Are you interested in self publishing via the audiobook format? If so you'll be interested in my next interview with, Tim Hampton, who was born and raised in Port Arthur, Tx. A longtime fan of Actor, Writer Tyler Perry, Tim always had a vivid understanding of the entertainment industry and what it meant to entertain people.
In 2003 Tim Hampton moved to Tampa, Florida and began writing books about his former career as a Texas Prison Guard. Thousands of copies were distributed and Tim was deemed an overnight success. Today Author Tim Hampton continues to write, and while being inspired by the likes of Tyler Perry, Tim has created several stories in which he records vocally, adds music and sound effects and releases as Audio Books. Self proclaiming himself as 'The King of Audiobooks' his stories are being sought after worldwide.
1. Tim, welcome! Thank you for taking the time to share about your expertise, self publishing books in the audiobook format. Share with us how you first became interested in writing and self publishing.
I've always enjoyed reading and writing stories. In 1994, I went to work as a 19 year old Texas Prison Guard. I started keeping notes on my daily duties, and over time, I realized I had enough notes to write a book. I never intended for it to actually become my first book, but after moving to Tampa, Florida in 2003, everyone I met was seemingly fascinated by the Texas Prison system, and I found myself surrounded by small groups of people who enjoyed listening to me share my experiences working in a maximum security prison. I quickly realized that it was time for me to explore the book publishing world.
2. You use your prior experience working as a Texas Prison Guard for the basis of your fiction audiobook, "Holding My Own." I'm sure you have many stories to tell! What advice do you have for others who want to write fiction books based upon their personal experiences in life?
My advice to people who want to write about their life experiences is to:
#1 "Don't proscastinate".. let your writing be your therapy, and if you think your story might be boring, or not interesting enough, keep in mind that your story may actually help, enlighten, even entertain someone who you will probably never meet.
#2 Don't think you are not writing fast or long enough. I've read the best books that were under 100 pages and the Author says it took years to write. I also came across books 500+ pages that were written in a few months time, that were not good at all...
3. Share with us why you chose to publish in the audiobook format vs. print books or eBooks.
As a self published author, it was rewarding to pack a couple hundred books and fly up to New York, Boston, or Houston and sell my work in shopping malls, Mom and Pops book stores, or flea markets. I started doing it in 2004 and in just a few years I've noticed and kept a close eye on the technology trend. I noticed people seemed to have traded physical books for ipods and smart phones. My sales were down, so instead of waiting until I bottomed out, I brainstormed and came up with the plan of producing audioboks as a way to keep up with our fast changing times.
4. You use CDbaby.com to sell your books in audiobook format. What tips and tricks have you learned about publishing on CDbaby.com that you can share with us?
Going digital with my writing, I felt like selling physical CD's was not the best option for me, nor for the people interested in my work. I also noticed that CD sales are down (even for major artists), again all due to ipods, mp3 players, and smart phones. I explored ways to have the best chance and most convienent way for my audiobooks to reach the consumers and CDbaby provided just that. CDbaby also makes my work avaliable at itunes, emusic and more...
5. Where do you record your books into audiobook format? Do you use a professional studio or a home studio?
I recorded my very first audiobook in a major recording studio, but soon realized that because little to no music is involved a home studio worked just as good and in most cases even better.6. Are there any tools or software that you'd recommend for recording books into the audiobook format?
The tools and software needed to create an audio book that I know of are: a computer, a microphone, pro tools software or any music recording software. I find it very easy today to hire the young high school or college person who is good at working with computers and music software. With a creative mind, patience, and a few dollars, you can end up earning over a 1000 times your initial investment.
7. In closing, what do you think is the single most important thing for self publishing authors to do when recording audiobooks?
Single most importing thing to do when recording audiobooks is to focus on the story. Make it as creative as possible and with your sound effects (if you choose to use any) so that your story actually comes to life!
8. Thank you so much, Tim, for sharing such great information. Please share with our readers where they can find out more about you and how they can purchase your audiobooks.
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