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33 Calls for Submissions in August 2020 - Paying markets

Flash Club Contest! August Flash Club

Paul Whybrow

Full Member
We’re all used to the concept of blurb on book covers and trailers advertising films and television programmes. Free samples of food and drink are given away at food fairs and in supermarket aisles to tempt shoppers to buy the whole thing.

Such promotional work is often the responsibility of marketing agencies. Trailers or previews for Hollywood movies are usually made by ad agencies, not the studio or director that shot the film.

It’s why so many trailers contain spoilers.

With my first Cornish Detective novel Who Kills A Nudist?, which I’ve just turned into an audiobook, I’m OK for blurb and the logline on the eBook and POD paperback, but there’s an unusual problem with submitting an audiobook for sale on Audible. They require a sample to use as a teaser for readers thinking of buying:

Your audiobook must include a retail audio sample that is between one and five minutes long. Explicit material is not permitted in the sample.

This sample should start with narration, not opening credits or music. The sample must not include explicit material. This sample is used by customers to preview of your audiobook.

One minute is ludicrously short a sample to impress anyone, but I’ve been scratching my head trying to find a longer section representative of my novel and which might provoke the curiosity of an audiobook fan. There’s a lot of explicit material in my story, which features murder, drug abuse and BDSM! o_O I need to find something that’s clean but not boring.

It’s made me wonder whether I should write interesting but safe bits that can be used as a ‘retail audio sample’ in future books that I might adapt to audiobooks. Choosing the right sample could be crucial for sales. It’s the audiobook version of a reader dipping into a book from the shelf to see if they like the style and what the story is about.

Publishing is moving in strange directions.

Could you choose a five-minute sample from your story to entice a reader of audiobooks?




I'd time the first scene or chapter, because if that doesn't get them in, they're not the right market. It can also backfire to have the sample be something that isn't the beginning if the reader thinks it should be the opening of the story.

33 Calls for Submissions in August 2020 - Paying markets

Flash Club Contest! August Flash Club