Findaway Voices and Author’s Republic are the main competitors to Amazon’s Audiobook Creation Exchange (ACX). This is good news for authors interested in turning their ebooks into audiobooks. These companies offer production and distribution services, but at varying levels of service and cost to the author.

The table below is a summary of the production and distribution services offered by Findaway Voices, Author’s Republic, and ACX.

Audiobook DistributorFindaway VoicesAuthor’s RepublicACX
Production ServicesYesYes 1Yes
Distribution ServicesYes 2Yes 2Yes 2
Platform FeesFree 3FreeFree
Narration Costs>$250 4>$200 4$100-$300 4
Author Royalties80%70%40% or 25% 5
PaymentDirect DepositPayPalDirect Deposit
Audiobook Price ControlYesYesNo
Pre-Order FunctionalityYesNoYes
Distribution Territories170 countriesNot availableUS, UK, DE, FR, ES, IT, JP, CA, AU
Author SupportEmailEmailEmail, chat, & phone

1 Author’s Republic helps authors produce their audiobooks by partnering with: Deyan Audio, Pro Audio Voices, Voices for Books, Bee Audio, and e-Audio Production to provide narrators.

2 Findaway Voices and Author’s Republic are aggregate companies that rely on distribution partners to get their audiobooks into online stores. ACX, an Amazon company, distributes to Amazon, Audible (also an Amazon Company), and iTunes.

3 Findaway Voices charges a $49 administration fee to use their platform but waives the fee if the author uses Draft2Digital to create their audiobook first.

4 On Findaway Voices, narration costs are fixed by narrators who tend to be SAG-AFTRA union members. Author’s Republic’s narration partners (listed in 1) also use SAG-AFTRA union members. ACX allows inexperienced and experienced narrators which results in a wider range of prices. The ACX narration costs are for experienced narrators.

5 ACX offers the author several options for royalty payments. The two royalty percentages refer to an author agreeing to a pay-for-production option as well as either an exclusive contract (40%) or a non-exclusive contract (25%). An exclusive contract means that the author agrees not to place their audiobooks anywhere else. The non-exclusive contract is for audiobooks placed on the author’s website, social media, and online audiobook stores.

If you would like to learn more about all of the distribution options available on ACX, please read my article, How Do I Distribute My Audiobook?


The remainder of this article describes in detail the various services offered by Findaway Voices, Author’s Republic, and ACX.

Findaway Voices

My experience with Findaway Voices is that they are fantastic. They make the process of creating and distributing your audiobook as straightforward and seamless as possible.

Production Services

Findaway Voices contains production services for narration. The way it works is either you use Draft2Digital or you manually input your audiobook’s data onto the Findaway Voices website. Then they provide a curated list of narrators that they feel will be best suited to your audiobook. Once you select a narrator, you wait for the narrator to finish your audiobook.

If you would like to learn more about audiobook production, take a look at my article, How Long Does It Take To Record an Audiobook.

Distribution Services

I found the distribution services on Findaway Voices to be easy and seamless to the author. When you approve of your audiobook, it is sent to Findaway Voices’ distribution partners. These partners represent online retailers as well as libraries.

As the author, you can select any partners you would like to use. Note that their partners include retail stores as well as libraries. Below is a table of Findaway Voices distribution partners.

Google PlayKobo/Walmart24symbolsAnyplay
Apple iTunesBarnes and Noble NookAudiobooks.comAudiobooksNow
AudiobooksNZAuthors DirectBajaLibrosBeek
BokusBookBeatBookmateChirp
DownpoureStoriesFuuzeHibooks
Hummingbird Digital MediaInstareadLeamosLibro.fm
NextoryPapaya FMLaysterScribd
Storytel3Leaf GroupAxiell MediaBaker & Taylor
BibliothecaBidiEBSCOFollett
HooplaMLOLOdiloOver Drive
Perma-BoundWheelers  

Platform Fees

I used Draft2Digital to create my ebook and then Findaway Voices for my audiobook. Draft2Digital and Findaway Voices are partners and when I used both companies, Findaway Voices waived their $49 administration fee. If you start with Findaway Voices, you will need to pay the $49 fee.

This administration fee covers project management during the production phase of your audiobook, royalty reporting, ISBN registration, post-processing, and other administrative tasks.

Narration Costs

Generally, narrators on Findaway Voices are a little more expensive than ACX because they are members of the SAG-AFTRA union. I paid $250 per finished hour (which refers to the final length of the audiobook).

The Findaway Voices’ narrator I used was exceptional. She narrated my fantasy book with loads of different magical characters, and she really brought each one to life. It was like listening to a play but done by one person.

If you would like to learn how much narrators make, please take a look at my article, How Much Do Audiobook Narrators Make.

Author Royalties

When you sell audiobooks through Findaway Voices distribution partners, your royalty share is 80%. It’s easy to look at the 80% royalty and assume that Findaway Voices is the better choice. But, there is more to this picture. As of 2020, Audible/ACX has the lion’s share of the audiobook market. If may be better to place your audiobook on Audible/ACX, while you practice your marketing.

If you would like to learn more about author royalties, my article How Much Do Audiobook Narrators Make, discusses this in more detail.

Payment

Findaway Voices pays authors with direct deposit.

Audiobook Price Control

Findaway Voices allows authors to set the suggested retail price. Note that some distribution partners will use this price and others will not. Sometimes, if a particular online store is having a sale, they may temporarily lower the price of your audiobook. However, the author will still receive royalties based on the suggested retail price.

Pre-order Functionality

Pre-orders allow customers to order the audiobook before it has been released. Authors can start marketing the audiobook, knowing that the sales are taking place. Findaway Voices allows for pre-orders, but not all distribution partners support this function. However, Findaway is working with them.

Distribution Territories

Findaway Voices is available in 170 countries throughout the world. They are working on including more countries all the time.

Author Support

If you have a problem, your only option with Findaway Voices is to email them. Sometimes their response can take several days, so just be patient.

Author’s Republic

Author’s Republic is an aggregate audiobook distributor. They partner with other companies to allow authors to create their audiobooks, and they partner more companies to help authors to distribute their audiobooks.

Production Services

Author’s Republic has production services, but they are only available through their partners Deyan Audio, Pro Audio Voices, Voices for Books, Bee Audio, and e-Audio Production. These partners assist authors with narration, editing, proofing, and mastering an audiobook.

If you would like to learn more about audiobook production, take a look at my article, How Long Does It Take To Record an Audiobook.

Distribution Services

Like Findaway Voices, Author’s Republic relies on its distribution partners to disseminate your audiobook to retail stores and libraries. As the author, you can select which partners you would like to use. The table below lists their distribution partners.

3 Leaf Group3MAudiobooks.comAmazon
AudibleAudiobookstoreAudiotekaBaker Taylor
Barnes & NobleAudiobooksnowAudiomolBookmate
KoboDownpourEbscoeStories
FollettHooplaHummingbirdiTunes
LibroMackinMofiboNook
OdiloOverDrivePermaboundPlayster
ScribdStorytelDeezerNapster
SpotifyYouTubeHibooksBlinkist
GoogleAudiobooksnzBeekChirp
Apple iBooks24symbolsAnyplayNextory
WheelersuBookYouScribeBookbeat

Platform Fees

Author’s Republic is free to use.

Narration Costs

Narration is handled by Author’s republic production partners. Many of these partners use SAG-AFTRA narrators who command a higher rate. However, they usually also do a good job of vetting the narrators so that you get very high-quality voice over talent. In addition, they assist/check the production for any editing, proofing, or mastering mistakes.

Author Royalties

when you distribute through Author’s Republic to their distribution partners, your royalties are 70% which is a little lower than Findaway voices. Note that this is the royalty based on the suggested retail price set by the author, and retailers may or may not use this suggested retail price.

Payment

Author’s Republic uses PayPal to compensate authors.

Audiobook Price Control

Authors can set a suggested retail price for their audiobook. However, a retail store may or may not choose to use the price.

Pre-Order Functionality

Author’s Republic does not have pre-order functionality.

Distribution Territories

I was not able to find the number of countries Author’s Republic reaches. However, I would expect a number similar to Findaway Voices because they use many of the same distribution partners.

Author Support

If you have a problem, you can reach Author’s Republic via email,

Audiobook Creation Exchange (ACX)

I have produced one audiobook on ACX, and I found the process to be similar to Findaway Voices. As long as I took my time to read all of the instruction getting my audiobook onto ACX was simple.

Production Services

ACX includes production services for narration. The way it works is you claim your ebook or paperback book from Amazon, select a narrator, and wait for the audiobook. Unlike Findaway Voices, you can choose your narrator and negotiate a rate that works for both of you.

If you would like to learn more about audiobook production, take a look at my article, How Long Does It Take To Record an Audiobook.

Distribution Services

Once your audiobook has been approved by ACX, it is sent out to their distribution partners which include Amazon, Audible, and iTunes. This process works automatically, and the author doesn’t need to do anything.

Platform Fees

ACX does not charge any fees to use their website.

Narration Costs

ACX lists a wide range of narrators. The inexperienced narrators charge a lower rate of about $50 -$100, whereas experienced narrators may charge $100 – $500. Note that these are per finished hour which refers to the length of the audiobook. Therefore, if your completed audiobook is 6.5 hours long and your narrator charges $100 per finished hour, then the cost to the author, assuming pay-for-production, will be $650.

If you would like to learn how much narrators make, please take a look at my article, How Much Do Audiobook Narrators Make.

Author Royalties

Audible/ACX pays author royalties based on several factors. For example, if the author used pay-for-production, then that means they paid the narrator upfront. If the author has agreed to an exclusive contract, then their royalty will be 40% including sales to distribution partners like Amazon and iTunes. However, if the author wants to publish on other platforms, then their royalty will be 25% including sales to distribution partners.

If the author chooses a royalty share option, then their royalties will be cut in half. In this option, the author does not pay the narrator for production. Instead, they share the royalties. Therefore, the author makes 20% and the narrator makes 20% in an exclusive contract. In a nonexclusive contract, the author and narrator share a 25% royalty.

If you would like to learn more about author royalties, by article, How Much Do Audiobook Narrators Make, discusses this in more detail.

Payment

ACX pays authors with direct deposit.

Audiobook Price Control

Audible/ACX does not allow the author to set the price of their audiobook. Instead, they set the price based on the length of the audiobook. The list below shows the pricing based on the length of the audiobook.

  • under 1 hour: under $7
  • 1 – 3 hours: $7 – $10
  • 3 – 5 hours: $10 – $20
  • 5 – 10 hours: $15 – $25
  • 10 – 20 hours: $20 – $30
  • over 20 hours: $25 – $35

When Amazon, Audible, or iTunes have sales, they lower the audiobook’s price temporarily. Thus, the price of your audiobook could change frequently.

However, the most confusing thing is that it’s possible to find four prices for your audiobook depending on the platform. There will be one price on Amazon, another on iTunes, and two on Audible. Audible always has two prices: one for a subscriber and another for a one-time purchase.

Pre-Order Functionality

Audible/ACX allows authors to make their audiobook available for pre-order before it has been completed. While the narrator is still recording the audiobook, the author can contact Audible/ACX and have it available for sale as a pre-order. Then the author can use that time to market their audiobook. Note that only books that are under an exclusive contract with audible are eligible.

Distribution Territories

Your audiobook will be available in the US, UK, CA, and Ireland with Amazon, Audible, and iTunes.

Author Support

If you have a problem, you can reach help with email, chat, and phone calls. I have used the email option several times and always received prompt helpful advice.

Conclusion

Findaway Voices, Author’s Republic, and Audible/ACX offer a variety of options to produce and distribute their audiobook. All of these platforms offer something helpful for the author and all of these platforms have areas where they could improve.

I have personally used Findaway Voices and Audible/ACX and will use both of them again. I don’t have personal knowledge of Author’s Republic, but I haven’t found any problems with them.

Which platform have you used? Let me know in the comments below.