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Saturday, August 6, 2011

Steps for a Podiobook Episode

The hardest part of releasing a podiobook is the initial learning curve and the approval process. Now that I have that part down, here are the steps I follow to release an episode.

1. Record an episode. I use a Zoom H1 digital recorder that cost about $120, including accessories.  I find the quietest place in the house for recording, then invariably suffer interruptions of airplanes, loud motorcycles with sound that reaches all the way from the road, and other interruptions. When one happens, I stop, snap my fingers to make a mark in the audio file for editing, then reread the passage.

2. Edit the file. I use Audacity. I listen through, isolating and deleting noise. Once I've got a cleaned up file, I run normalize, then import my outro (the little bit at the end: "Thank you for listening to the Devil's Deep, etc."), then export a wav file.

3. Run the file through Enlevator. This evens out the loud and quiet parts to make it all roughly the same volume.

4. Add the music. I have created a file with background music for the intro and outro. This file took some effort to create, but now that I've got it done, it's just a question of queuing it up in the proper location of the file.

5. Export as mpeg. This is where I tag the file for release, at least partially.

6. Finish tagging in iTunes. This loads up the art and readies it for release.

7. Upload to There is a third-party software system that handles this, and there are a few additional fields to fill out, as well as a description of the episode, etc. At this point, I wait for the site owner of to either approve the episode or point out some deficiency.

Yes, even though I know enough of what I'm doing not to spend all day on this, it still takes a couple of hours of work in order to give away part of my book for free. By the time I'm done releasing the book, I could have written a good chunk of a novel. I'll explain in a future post why I'm going to all the trouble.


  1. OMG! You lost me at edit the file! lol

    Thanks Michael, it's something worth considering in the future.

  2. That's what I thought when I first started taking a look. It turns out not to be particularly difficult. There's an open source program called Audacity and it works surprisingly like a text editor. You listen through the sound file, then cut out the places where you had to start over, etc. If you ever decide to do it, Mel, I'll be happy to help, so far as I'm capable.