Well...wicked only in the gnarly, bodacious, good sense of the word. We've decided, (we--yeah, just me, one guy referring to myself as we), to add a new element to the world of POD BOOK reviewing by highlighting a growing segment of innovative online marketing, known as PODCASTING.
Essentially, PODCASTING (for a book) is the serialization of a novel into audio episodes and making these episodes available in MP3 downloadable format for curious fans to subscribe to--usually on a weekly basis. Now, that is the quick and dirty explanation and the actual creation of a podcast appears a bit more daunting. However, thousands of podcasts are out on the internet, hosted at sites like podiobooks.com and iTUNES.com, etc...so, it can't be too difficult for the average internet savvy person to learn the skills necessary to utilize this medium.
The inventive thing about utilizing a podcast over other forms, is that, as an author, you can present your work in a completely new realm. People who might not be interested in downloading your sample chapters to read for 30 minutes on a computer screen, would probably have no reservations about downloading your 30 minute podcast to their MP3 player to listen to on the way to work. Hmmm...and this new book medium has other advantages as well. For instance, those exciting parts in the story can be spruced up with music, various voices or just the excited tone of your voice in the reading. And the fact of the matter is that it requires less work on the part of the "listener" than it does on the "reader."
CHION, a recently reviewed favorite has, for example, an MP3 download of the first 20 minutes of the book. The author, Darryl Sloan, did a wonderful job and it immediately had me hooked to the story and wanting to read the book...just remember, you still need a great book!
Another author coming under review here at PODLINGS, Scott Sigler, has no less than 3 fully podcasted novels under his belt and just recently took his legions of adoring podcast fans over to Amazon.com to storm the rankings and end up an Amazon.com bestseller in two different categories!
That says much for the possibilities for poor ole POD authors, since this is essentially a free way to advertise your book, but remember that these examples had great stories and high quality audio going their way as well. I would imagine that, just as in the POD book realm, there is in the PODCAST realm a proliferation of horrible, low quality garbage which doesn't even deserve to be heard at all. Some authors appear to be providing all of their novel in serial form, while others prefer to give enough to hook the reader and send them back to the print form of the novel for the rest. The choice is yours as the author.
What we would like to do at PODLINGS is to provide a dedicated page for POD and small press authors to feature links to your first episode--IF AND ONLY IF, the book is quality and the audio is quality. I have no desire to provide a place for sludge to collect...therefore, you send the links to your first episode and if I like the story and the quality of the episode itself, I will create a post for it and include a snippet review for you with links back to wherever you want readers to come and find the rest of the episodes or print book. The PODCAST CORNER link will appear in my sidebar and this will be the permanent link to this page. If your print novel gets a good review and you have an audio file like CHION does then we'll link the book review to your PODCAST episode post, the same way we link author interviews. So, consider your options and if you like, then submit your first episode file *complete with book cover file* and links. Your podcast episode MUST BE FROM A BOOK AVAILABLE IN PRINT FORM or available in print in the near future!