I am a big supporter of indie media of all forms. It is the primary reason I started my podcast Rock and Roll Jew Show; to highlight and support indie music, especially from Israel. I have also been a supporter of another new form of indie media called Podiobooks. Podiobooks are independent authors who podcast their books in audio form in order to build an audience. After they have build a dedicated listenership the goal is to convert a certain percentage of those listeners into real book buyers. This is right along the lines of what Chris Anderson has outlined in his new book Free: The Future of a radical price. Several authors have been able to land major publishing deals due to their podcasts as well. The model was pioneered by Scott Sigler who is also currently the most successful podiobook author. Scott was able to hit the New York Times best seller list with his second hardcover release Contagious. This from an unknown author literally coming out of nowhere just a few years ago.
I want to highlight here two other of my favorite podiobook authors who currently have books out. JC Hutchins began his podiobook career with the wildly successful 7th Son novel series. 7th Son: Decent, the first in the series, will be coming out this October in hardcover. JC’s first in print release is Personal Effects: Dark Art which I featured on Connected World TV #1. This is a scary horror/psychological thriller. It’s a very unique book because of the tangible items that come as part of the book. These items directly relate to what is going on in the book and include additional clues to the mystery in the form of phone numbers and websites you can visit. It’s being called a trans-media experience and it is certainly like nothing else I have ever seen.
Seth Harwood is a classically trained author who began his writing career with somewhat high brow short stories. Seth finally gave in to his real passions of crime drama, high action and kick butt characters and created Jack Wakes Up, the first novel in the Jack Palms Crime series. Seth also took the podcasting route to promote Jack Wakes Up and has developed a devoted following of “Palms Mamas and Palms Daddies”. Jack wakes up is now out in trade paperback form from Three Rivers Press. I have never been a crime fiction fan but this isn’t your fathers crime drama. Combining the best of Pulp Fiction, The Wire and The Sopranos, Jack Wakes Up is a completely modern crime drama complete with guns, drugs, car chases, and Czechs.
Fortunately both these authors have made available special previews of these books which I have included for you. Read the first couple of chapters and see if you don’t get hooked. If you do, both books are available at major bookstores or at Amazon.com
UPDATE: Phil Rossi, yet another great podiobook author is having his Amazon.com “rush” tomorrow, July 9 2009 to support his new release Crescent. This theory, which has been used successfully before and in fact helped launch Scott Sigler’s career is to get as many people as possible to buy the book on Amazon.com on a single day. This causes the book to attain a very high place on the Amazon.com rankings which brings notoriety to the book and it’s author. More than one author has used this technique to land a major publishing deal. This is new media gorilla marketing at it’s finest. Crescent is also available as a free preview so check it out. I listened to Crescent as a podiobook and I can tell you it is one of the scariest stories I have ever experienced. It’s Blade Runner crossed with Outland crossed with Alien.