Do you Listen to Audio Books?

First, allow me to apologize for missing two Wednesdays in a row. Crazy times at RWA, but I warned you-all and expected I might not be able to post that week. But last week? I didn’t go back to work until that Wednesday, and I just totally forget. Tuesday felt like Monday, you see…

So, about Audio Books. I’ll have to get you there the long way because I’m going to tell you my story.

There are a few things you need to know first:

1. In the olden days, I was given several audio books on DVD, and I listened to them in the car and I enjoyed that. But I always lose the DVD and … too many steps. Too many things to lose so I didn’t pick up the habit. Besides I don’t take very many long car drives. I’m also really the only person in the house who could listen to the DVDs because everyone else is deaf or hearing-impaired, except my son, and part of my strategy for not having STUFF is the ability to give stuff to someone else.

2. I live where there is sucky internet so by and large, in the medium olden days, it wasn’t possible to download an Audio book unless I wait to start the download very late at night, so again, never got into the habit.

Time passes and authors everywhere are doing well with audio books because of Amazon making it easy for customers to get them. Also: 4G for the iPhone and iPad which is a LOT faster than the internet in the house. On the iPad, I can watch YouTube videos like the one below (which blew my mind for reasons I will shortly disclose) without waiting for buffering every 30 seconds.

The video below, which is the funny, smart, and talented Kevin Gisi telling us How to Be An Insomniac blew my mind because apparently, as I learned from this, you can listen to audio books and set a timer to turn it off. I had no idea.

Normally, if I can’t sleep, I plot in my head so I often find insomnia useful until I have to go to work on way not enough sleep. From time to time, though, I experience plotting-proof insomnia. No fun. But the audio book thing. MY GOD!!!  I realize this is blindingly obvious, but it just wasn’t in my world.

Right. So I’m working on getting an audio book for Lord Ruin. This is a wonderful thing at the moment because mostly it involves no work on my part. A good friend of mine’s daughter is an actress, mostly Shakespeare, and she’s narrating the book for me. And while I was at RWA, she and her producer sent me the first chapter to listen to. And it was awesome. They sent chapter two a few days ago and that was awesome, too. There I was lying in bed listening via the iPad and now I want complete audio books to listen to.

A few months ago, the company that did the original audio book for A Darker Crimson contacted the series authors about re-upping– he wanted all the authors’ books so we had to make a group decision. After some dithering around we said sure and my agent took care of all the contract stuff and a couple of months ago, the company sent me a copy of the audio book. On 11 CDs. My reaction then was oh god. more STUFF but now I’m thinking, WOOT! I can rip the CD’s and get it to the iPad!

The Poll

Do you Listen to Audio Books?

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Now I’m curious. What do you think of audio books? If you don’t listen to them, why not? If you do, what got you listening?

About carolyn

Carolyn Jewel was born on a moonless night. That darkness was seared into her soul and she became an award winning and USA Today bestselling author of historical and paranormal romance. She has a very dusty car and a Master’s degree in English that proves useful at the oddest times. An avid fan of fine chocolate, finer heroines, Bollywood films, and heroism in all forms, she has two cats and a dog. Also a son. One of the cats is his.
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13 Responses to Do you Listen to Audio Books?

  1. LenoreJ says:

    I listen to audio books when I am driving. I live in Texas, a state that is almost a thousand miles wide. Houston is as close to Chicago as it is to El Paso. I am often in the car for 3 to 5 hours at a time. Nothing makes the miles fly by like a good audio book!

  2. HJ says:

    I am a huge fan of audio books. I started listening when I was regularly driving a long distance at the beginning and end of each week, and it made me feel that I was making good use of the time. The more I listened the more I realised that I got more out of listening to a book than reading it, because I couldn’t skim through parts of it to see what happens but had to hear/read every word. Also, if a book is well narrated, it’s enjoyable in its own right. More often than not, I listen to books I’ve already read – just for pleasure.

    As well as driving, I do quiet housework and knitting while listening to audio books. They make the most tedious task enjoyable. They are also excellent for sunbathing, or for being in a hot place where it’s too bright to read easily even if you’re in the shade. So, perfect for holidays! You can people-watch while reading…

    • carolyn says:

      Oh, audiobook while sunbathing. What a great idea! Only I would be shadowbathing, as I am just not a sun-kind of person.

  3. GrowlyCub says:

    I got into the habit when I drove to cat shows almost every weekend, first with legally burned CDs from the library and when I got my new(er) car via my mp3 player plugged into the audio system. Our online library has a pretty decent selection and they are open to requests and will purchase on reader recommendation. I haven’t figured out how to stop audiobooks automatically after a specific time; must look into that to see if my mp3 player can do that. I use audio books to help me fall asleep occasionally, but I have had some weird ass dreams (the one inspired by Cod was particularly memorable :). And yes, it helps make housework slightly less annoying, too.

    • carolyn says:

      I believe the Audible app has this feature. I will be investigating this soon! I was wondering about what kind of dreams people would have if they fell asleep to an audio book.

  4. SonomaLass says:

    If I had long commutes, or other long drives alone, I think I would glom audio books. In the mid-90s, my then-husband and I drove cross-country (Indiana to California and back) with four kids, ages 2 through 13. We listened to an abridged version of Lord of the Rings on cassette tapes on the drive. It was magical.

  5. I’m not sure exactly why, but listening to an audio book makes me cringe. I think part of it is that I am a visual person and I really don’t do well when people tell me things. But write it down so I can read it and I’m golden. I know I’m not alone in disliking them, but I do think I’m in the minority. Of course, I miss out on some major “reading” time in the car, so that’s a bummer.

    Good luck with your audio venture! Despite my personal feelings, I know people love them, so I think it’s a great idea for you.

    • carolyn says:

      I’ve been asking around, and you are not alone. There are definitely people who have the same issue you do. Some people just need the visual element. Sound alone isn’t enough.

  6. I started listening to audio books last year. It’s a different reading experience and my liking or not liking often depends on the narrator. A narrator that doesn’t click with me can put me off a book. I listen to them while walking the dog and find them a great way of getting some reading in when I’m short of time.

  7. I love the idea of audio books and I think they’d be great for insomnia. But I don’t own any tho maybe I should consider it.

  8. Ella Quinn says:

    When I was driving a lot, I listened to them, but not any more.

  9. Pat A says:

    I listen to audio books while I am in the kitchen. I’m a chef and I do catering. So when I am in my personal kitchen working out menu ideas I listen to mysteries, and paranormal books. Lord Ruin is one of my favorite books. I have it in paper and on my Kindle. Now I am looking for to it on audio.

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