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Old May 9 2008, 09:42 PM   #1
Multimedium
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New Star Trek Audio Books

Is there any chance that we could see any new Star Trek audio books in the future? It seems in that audio books in general are doing quite well, and it was announced that all new Star Wars audio books are now going to be unabridged in the future. It just seems like a big event like the upcoming Destiny trilogy could do well as audio books.

Last edited by Multimedium; May 10 2008 at 03:40 AM.
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Old May 9 2008, 09:50 PM   #2
ClayinCA
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Re: New Star Trek Audio Books

Aren't Pocket backing off from Star Trek audio books, or from audio books in general? Seems to me I've heard that somewhere around here...
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Old May 9 2008, 09:59 PM   #3
tenmei
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Re: New Star Trek Audio Books

Given we've had book only series, how about exploring a couple of audio-only series - like Big Finish are doing with Doctor Who, Sapphire and Steel and The Tommorow People?

It's definitely something I've got faith in Pocket to carry off.
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Old May 9 2008, 10:23 PM   #4
Therin of Andor
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Re: New Star Trek Audio Books

Multimedium wrote: View Post
Is there any chance that we could see any new Star Trek audio books in the future? It seems in that audio books in general are doing quite, and it was announced that all new Star Wars audio books are now going to be unabridged in the future. It just seems like a big event like the upcoming Destiny trilogy could do well as audio books.
Simon & Schuster Audioworks hasn't abridged a Star Trek novel since Shatner's "Captain's Glory" in 2006, and it was the first not to be released as an audio cassette. CD and download only! Obviously, Star Trek abridgements have become unprofitable, much as I enjoyed collecting (and listening) to them.
http://therinofandor.blogspot.com/20...ive-often.html

A company called Recorded Books has done a set of unabridged audios for the "Vulcan's Soul" trilogy. But, even though I'm a completist, I've had no desire to commit to the expense, let along find the time to listen to many, many hours of these stories, word-for-word, when I've already read them. I feel that unabridged audios are aimed at people who probably don't intend to read the actual book, or want to hear the whole thing again on a looooong journey.

To me, abridged audiobooks often have a fresh take on a story, even if shorter, and they sorta, kinda, feel like an official adaptation/episode.

If you're talking about original audios, then it seems no one has secured the separate license for these since the three "Captain Sulu" audio-only experiments in 1994-95. I recall John Ordover once saying that Simon & Schuster was not able to present the audio tracks of the "Star Trek Academy" computer game as an audiobook, (as they had for 1996's "Star Trek: Klingon" and "Star Trek: Borg") when that game came out, because they'd let the part of their license lapse.

If another original-to-audio series was mooted, it would be very hard to judge what the audience would be. "Doctor Who" and "Blake's Seven" went to audio when there was a dearth of new visuals being made.

Do we know if S&S Audio's ST license has actually lapsed, or will there be a chance they intend to adapt the "Destiny" trilogy? (If they intended to, I'd assume Book 1 would be underway already.) It's odd that S&S would wait so long between audios if they did intend to produce more. Do we have any contacts at Recorded Books?
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Last edited by Therin of Andor; May 9 2008 at 10:34 PM. Reason: added dates
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Old May 9 2008, 11:46 PM   #5
tenmei
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Re: New Star Trek Audio Books

If another original-to-audio series was mooted, it would be very hard to judge what the audience would be. "Doctor Who" and "Blake's Seven" went to audio when there was a dearth of new visuals being made.
Big Finish put out their first Doctor Who audio ('Sirens of Time') in March 1999 and Blakes Seven recently had an audio relaunch - neither at a time when new visuals were being made but both of which prooved popular.
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Old May 9 2008, 11:54 PM   #6
Therin of Andor
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Re: New Star Trek Audio Books

[quote=tenmei;1623466]
Big Finish put out their first Doctor Who audio ('Sirens of Time') in March 1999 and Blakes Seven recently had an audio relaunch - neither at a time when new visuals were being made but both of which prooved popular.
Yes, that's my point. But "popular" is relative. "Profitable" is the key.
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Old May 10 2008, 12:07 AM   #7
tenmei
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Re: New Star Trek Audio Books

Yes, that's my point. But "popular" is relative. "Profitable" is the key.
You also said that both were produced when new visuals were being produced - which they weren't. Also, both Who and Seven are, justifiably, much more niche productions than Trek - and with the new Star Trek movie coming out, surely it's time to take a chance or two.

Obviously BF are making enough money back to justify their production - it would be assumed that Star Trek could make the same amount of money that would be made from a single BF production.

Audio-books might not be making as much money as they used to, but is that down to an increased number of people buying the books as opposed to the audios or the audios and the books - or the books being produced just, in general, not being as popular as they were (the ones done as audio's too).

I remember a load of publicity for NF around the time it was launched - and that was profitable, true - an audio would cost more to produce than simply paying PAD to write - but if the same amount of publicity was done as for NF, I'm sure sales would increase.

Plus, making it an audio-only series decreases the number of people for whom the audio is an either/or purchase - as it's the only way they can digest the product.
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Old May 10 2008, 12:21 AM   #8
Therin of Andor
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Re: New Star Trek Audio Books

tenmei wrote: View Post
You also said that both were produced when new visuals were being produced.
No I didn't.

I said: "'Doctor Who' and 'Blake's Seven' went to audio when there was a dearth of new visuals being made."

A dearth = "an inadequate supply; scarcity; lack".
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Old May 10 2008, 12:26 AM   #9
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Re: New Star Trek Audio Books

tenmei wrote: View Post
making it an audio-only series decreases the number of people for whom the audio is an either/or purchase - as it's the only way they can digest the product.
Which S&S Audio experimented with: the "Captain Sulu Adventures" trilogy in 1994/95. It failed.
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Old May 10 2008, 03:57 AM   #10
Multimedium
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Re: New Star Trek Audio Books

Therin of Andor wrote: View Post
Simon & Schuster Audioworks hasn't abridged a Star Trek novel since Shatner's "Captain's Glory" in 2006, and it was the first not to be released as an audio cassette. CD and download only! Obviously, Star Trek abridgements have become unprofitable, much as I enjoyed collecting (and listening) to them.
This is my point. It seems like the market is expanding with digital downloads on iTunes and Audible, but there have been no new Trek audio books in almost two years. With digital downloads there is no CD or tape cost to be recovered.

I have no facts to back any of this up, but it seems like the market for audio books is quite healthy. Audible has greatly increased their SF/F catalog over the past few months, and with the Star Wars books going unabridged it would seem to point to a healthy market. I'm even seeing audio books of the DC Comics novels being done now.

I think there may have been some titles over the past few years that could have made for natural releases. I'm thinking the first Titan book for example could have been a successful audio book. A big event like the Destiny books also would seem to be a natural fit.
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Old May 10 2008, 05:19 AM   #11
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Re: New Star Trek Audio Books

Multimedium wrote: View Post
It seems like the market is expanding with digital downloads on iTunes and Audible, but there have been no new Trek audio books in almost two years. With digital downloads there is no CD or tape cost to be recovered.
With S&S's ebook-only series not selling well enough for them to justify continuing it, I don't see them being willing to try a digital-only audio series--a niche of a niche.
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Old May 10 2008, 05:49 AM   #12
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Re: New Star Trek Audio Books

ClayinCA wrote: View Post
Aren't Pocket backing off from Star Trek audio books, or from audio books in general? Seems to me I've heard that somewhere around here...
No, Pocket isn't, because Pocket Books doesn't have the rights to Trek audios -- Simon & Schuster Audio does. It's a separate division of S&S.


tenmei wrote: View Post
Given we've had book only series, how about exploring a couple of audio-only series - like Big Finish are doing with Doctor Who, Sapphire and Steel and The Tommorow People?

It's definitely something I've got faith in Pocket to carry off.
ATimson wrote: View Post
With S&S's ebook-only series not selling well enough for them to justify continuing it, I don't see them being willing to try a digital-only audio series--a niche of a niche.
The Timson speaks true. One of the reasons why the Big Finish audios are successful is because BF is a very small company with low overhead and low standards for success, and selling to a much much smaller primary market (the UK). For it to be worth it for S&S Audio, the stuff would need to sell in much larger numbers than BF's audios.

And the production costs for a digital download is almost the same as the production costs for a CD, because pressing the CD is the least expensive part of it. You still have to hire actors, pay them, produce it, edit it, and all the rest.
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Old May 10 2008, 09:11 AM   #13
Therin of Andor
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Re: New Star Trek Audio Books

Multimedium wrote: View Post
It seems like the market is expanding with digital downloads on iTunes and Audible, but there have been no new Trek audio books in almost two years.
Maybe S&S have enough ST backstock to keep the brand new iTunes and Audible customers downloading all the old ST titles. No need yet to make new ones.
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Old May 11 2008, 09:03 PM   #14
RookieBatman
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Re: New Star Trek Audio Books

ATimson wrote: View Post
With S&S's ebook-only series not selling well enough for them to justify continuing it...
What, you mean Corps of Engineers? They're not discontinuing that, are they?
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Old May 11 2008, 09:09 PM   #15
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Re: New Star Trek Audio Books

RookieBatman wrote: View Post
ATimson wrote: View Post
With S&S's ebook-only series not selling well enough for them to justify continuing it...
What, you mean Corps of Engineers? They're not discontinuing that, are they?
Yeah, sorry

See this thread: http://www.trekbbs.com/showthread.php?t=47508
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