Jeanne Burrows-Johnsons Blog for Imaginings Wordpower Design Consultation

AUDIO BOOKS 1

Prospect for Murder...in written and audio editions...the first Natalie Seachrist Hawaiian Mystery

Prospect for Murder is the first award-winning
Natalie Seachrist Hawaiian Mystery 
written and narrated by
Jeanne Burrows-Johnson

As I have shared recently, the reshaping of my author website and ImaginingsWordpower.com [a branding and development tips] has been completed. Unfortunately, the new template system does not allow me to embed audio files directly from my desktop. Therefore, I am placing audio samples in appropriate blogs, then inserting hyperlinks on my author site to connect readers to these blogs. Text from the lighthearted article, “Tucson and Her Cemeteries” is available on my author website.  A link to my previous blog provides an audio player for your listening pleasure…

 Having completed several audio projects, I’m contemplating publishing an Online compendium of suggestions for your own endeavors in this area of authorship and performance. This would include ideas for project conceptualization as well as approaches to technical issues…with the proviso that electronic equipment is constantly changing.

Today I offer some background on the development of Under Sonoran Skies, Prose and Poetry from the High Desert, which you can read about on my author website.  The six-author anthology was one of the top 50 picks of 2012 by Southwest Books of the Year.

Under Sonoran Skies Prose and Poetry of the High Desert

HARMONY

I believe an invaluable issue in compiling any anthology is establishing harmony among the authors’ personalities, skill sets, and voices. Fortunately, the co-authors of USS had become acquainted in attendance of writers’ salons for a couple of years. 

THE AUTHORS

~  Bill Black, a magician, poet, prosaist, storyteller and MC, who has published numerous books and has been featured in regional and international magazines.  His current works may be found at his author page on Amazon.com

~  Susan Cosby-Patton, retired language arts instructor and poet who is published regionally and nationally. 

~  Kay Lesh, PhD,  educator and psychotherapist who authors professional articles and books and will soon be publishing a collection of short mysteries as well as a memoir. 

The late Reverend Patricia Noble who was a retired author, educator, and speaker who aired radio essays and published journal articles. 

The late Larry Sakin, who was a political writer and radio talk show host, green energy entrepreneur, and political consultant.

OUR COMPLEMENTARY WORK

Over time, we became familiar with the depth of our fiction and non-fiction work and recognized our complimentary voices. This led to a book of eleven themed chapters of poems, short stories, historical articles, and reflective essays.  Our intention was to allow readers to work their way through the book sequentially or select from varied  subjects. 

The topics of our assembled pieces include: animal companions; business; the environment; history, mythology, personal relationships; phases of life; philosophy; politics; and, war. As most anthologies address a single topic, you may be wondering how we knitted the book together. We began by grouping our disparate works by topic and then placing them in chapters. Imagine our delight when Patricia recognized the synchronicity of flipping the words in the titles of our first and last chapters, “Visioning the Craft” and “Crafting the Vision.”

INDIVIDUAL ASSIGNMENTS

Production work was apportioned based on experience and interest. Because Kay possesses a well-modulated voice, we had asked her to record the front piece material and chapter headings. Susan had been involved with the fabrication of other publications. Therefore, she undertook text layout to meet the requirements of printing and Online production. Larry and I both had experience in artistic design, we pooled our design concepts. This included utilizing a sunset image I shot from my back lānai, and folio art to frame pagination. Because of my work in historical projects, I undertook designing a comprehensive index. We also benefited from the breadth of Bill’s technical knowledge and the grammar checking of Patricia.

THE AUDIO EDITION

As the majority of our group had performance experience, we immediately decided to produce an audio as well as written edition. We were very fortunate that Larry had been working with Jim Waters of Tucson Waterworks Recording for several years. With confidence in both the man’s technical and directing talents, it was easy for each of us to enter the studio for one or more recording sessions. Once Jim had the raw material, he was able to smooth out differences in speed, cadence, and tone.  His final work was to prepare our audio files in several formats.

IN SUMMATION…for now

Was our work perfect?  I don’t believe so, but I hope we have met our listeners’ expectations of a work addressing multiple subjects in truly varied voices.  You will be the judge of the strengths and weaknesses of the few areas of consideration I’ve raised in this brief project overview. 

I think my greatest advice to you is to consider the individual gifts of everyone involved in such a project. This means being judgmental of yourself, as well as those with whom you are working. A well-produced audio book generates income.  It is also a wonderful way of enhancing recognition of your brand and introducing your work to a greater audience!

Please be aware that the voices you’ll hear in USS vary. And I’ll admit  not all of us would be appropriate to undertaking the reading of an entire book. Finally, none of us would suggest publishing a work in any form without the input of other established authors, let alone a professional editor and perhaps a performance coach….

Now without further ado, are a few audio samples from Under Sonoran Skies, Prose and Poetry from the High Desert. I hope you’ll enjoy these selections and understand why it’s my pleasure to continue working with these talented authors.

The Bourbon Eulogy by Bill Black
Prologue to Prospect for Murder by Jeanne Burrows-Johnson
As a Jewel in the Crown by Susan Cosby-Patton
Cookie Time by Kay Lesh

I hope you’ve enjoyed this brief introduction to one of my favorite projects!  Now I think it’s time to turn to the matter of a business Facebook page…

Wishing you the best in your creative journey, 
Jeanne Burrows-Johnson
author, narrator, consultant, motivational speaker

You may also wish to check out the following blogs on related topics:
~ Quality Book Production, Feb. 15, 2016
~ The Value of an Index, Aug. 28, 2015

To learn more about current and planned projects, please visit my author website at JeanneBurrows-Johnson.com.

Tips on branding, marketing and developing your work are available at Imaginingswordpower.com.

Published by

Jeanne Burrows-Johnson

Author, narrator, and speaker Jeanne Burrows-Johnson embraces years in the performing arts, education, and marketing. She was art director, indexer, and a co-author of Under Sonoran Skies, Prose and Poetry from the High Desert (a 2012 Southwest Books of the Year top pick). In 2017, Prospect for Murder won a first place for art and was a finalist in mystery/suspense at the New Mexico-Arizona Book Awards. Jeanne has a Bachelor of Arts degree in history from the University of Hawai`i, where during graduate studies and a teaching assistantship, she became a member of Phi Beta Kappa and Phi Alpha Theta. She’s also a member of the National Writers Union, Sisters in Crime, Arizona Mystery Writers, and the British Association of Teachers of Dancing, Highland Division. Her Hawaiian mystery series features lush Island environs, puzzling deaths, snippets of pan-Pacific history, and her heroine’s haunting visions. Project descriptions, Island recipes, and a link to her writing and marketing blog are at JeanneBurrows-Johnson.com.

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