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Trek Literature "...Good words. That's where ideas begin."

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Old October 18 2012, 08:22 PM   #46
NKemp3's Avatar
Re: Audio books

Therin of Andor wrote: View Post

NKemp3 wrote: View Post
Why not pose the same question regarding virtually every other book being released by a major publishing company these days? It doesn't appear to be hurting sales of books directly.

But the point is, Simon & Schuster would have to spend extra money on hiring a production team, musicians and actor to record the unabridged audio (many, many hours of work) for perhaps little profit, since you are arguing that fans who hear an unabridged novel don't even then go and buy/read the hardcopy novel.
You seem to suggest that the publishing companies have to shell out a whole lot of money in order to pay for the audio companies to hire the voice actors, the sound people, the musicians (if ones are needed), etc. No. Most of these companies like Audible have in-house production teams and talent whom they rely on again and again. I believe those folks are salaried or being paid by the hours they work. Companies like Audible have contracts with the publishers too to prevent costs from getting too high. Therefore I don't think it is a by-the-book basis in terms of price.

However even if I'm wrong on that front (in some instances at least) the extra money involved would still only be a one time production cost (for each book). Regardless which way it is done you have to spend money to make money and if a growing audience is going the audio route then spending on making an audio presentation is justified.

We may be spinning in circles here because you are bringing up the same arguments and you still seemed bothered by the fact that those who listen to the audio won't go out and buy the book. Why should they? They have already absorbed the whole story just as the author intended, not some shorthand version of the tale. Only difference is that they listened to it rather than read it. Either way they got every single word the author felt was needed to tell his/her tale. Abridged versions don't give you that option at all and most authors hate abridged versions of their work. They agreed to it for financial reasons and because of contracts, but considering how writers fret over editors making suggestions of taking minimal slices from their written work, just imagined how they feel when outsiders come in and gut 4/5 of the carcass for the sake of an abridged audio presentation? There is a reason that the audiobook download business does unabridged versions almost exclusively : authors prefer them over abridged ones. Besides as Greg Cox wrote just before your response, abridged audiobooks can cost just as much if not more than unabridged versions.

The abridged audios were an advertisement for the longer novel, which fans willingly paid for,

That's just plain wrong. As a person who worked in book stores for about six years I know that wasn’t the case. While I suppose there were some who used audio books in the fashion you mentioned, the vast majority of consumers who spent money on an abridged book did so because 1)they didn’t want to take the effort/time to read the book 2)because it was cheaper than an unabridged version or 3)there wasn't an unabridged version in the first place. What that vast majority was not doing was listening to an audiobook for two to six hours in order to decide to go out and buy the actual book to read. Not only is that a waste of time, it is also counterproductive because the abridged audio versions would still spoil the most important developments of the story, including the ending.

or/and a unique chance to hear a brand new vocal performance by favourite ST actors: Nimoy and Takei or Doohan, in the early days. Later Frakes, Besch, Koenig, McFadden, Dorn, and others.
That's even a more niche market than the overall market for abridged audio novels done by non-celebrities.

I really don't care for unabridged audios; I have no need for them. I have nothing against S&S making them, but if you want to prove a case for them, you need to convince us/them just how they'll be economical and/or profitable to create/sell.
All this time I had no idea I was having this discussion in order to convince you. I wouldn't waste either of our time. Clearly you are not interested in long-form audio books. You are part of that demographic who not only preferred shortened audio work, but shortened audio work read by some of your favorite celebrities. Even more you viewed abridged audiobooks (and audiobooks in general) as barely more than a tool to promote the actual book itself rather than seeing them as two sides of the same coin. Guess what? You are not the target audience and there's nothing wrong with that. You have a preference that is perfectly acceptable and to be honest you may think its too late for you to change your way of doing things now. I understand. But if you take a look at the Audible site you'll see that virtually every new book that gets an audio version are getting ones that are unabridged. And you'll see that the vast majority are being read by non-celebrities. In other words the way you think an audiobook should be done and the reasons you think an audiobook should be made are not in step with the industry's take on it. Therefore you aren't part of the targeted demographic, neither the industry or myself is trying to convince you to switch and the audiobook industry is growing despite the reluctance of people like yourself anyway. Me, I don't care for bluray. But bluray continues to take over from DVDs. Not only doesn't the industry need to convince an individual like me, it probably doesn't care.

As for the clumsy public library packaging for unabridged "Sarek", the problem was the need to package ten cassettes. This problem has been eliminated due to CD technology and digital downloads.
I know this. I believe I even already wrote that in my previous posts. But the library packaging, regardless of whether it was cassettes or CDs, was always less appealing than the ones put out by the publishers for consumers. Unless the library was given a store-purchased package brought by a library member who later wanted to get rid of it, the library was stuck with the editions that had the bland covers and bulky cases.
You will be missed, Richard Biggs
1961 - too soon

Last edited by NKemp3; October 19 2012 at 02:00 AM.
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Old October 18 2012, 08:37 PM   #47
NKemp3's Avatar
Re: Audio books

Therin of Andor wrote: View Post
Starbreaker wrote: View Post
I don't have a problem with abridged versions of works, but I'm not going to listen to one strictly because I'll always be wondering what I missed in the print version.
That's why the book is also available.
Once more...some don't want to read the book and therefore would be uninterested in the story in book form. I don't mean to insult but it appears as if you can't or won't grasp the concept that some would prefer to listen at their own leisure rather than to read. And those that prefer to listen tend to want the entire story, not a truncated one.

Would you feel the same if Nimoy and Takei performed selected excerpts of a novel onstage at a convention?

How is that the same? When you go to a bookstore to hear an author read passages of a book are you expecting the entire book or even a four-hour abridged version of the book to be read by him or her? Of course not. Selected excerpts mean just that: selected exerpts. People can handle that because typically it goes no more than a half hour and most of the audience can sit still in a chair or stand alongside a wall during that duration without feeling the impulse to do something else. At a Trek convention I'm sure the excerpt readings take even less time. Indeed the reading of selected excerpts is a great way to sale the book to those in the audience who have not purchased it. That is far different from an abridged version of an audiobook that would be no less than two hours in presentation while giving away all the important plot points and developments.
You will be missed, Richard Biggs
1961 - too soon

Last edited by NKemp3; October 19 2012 at 02:00 AM.
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