Being a writer working on a fantasy novel, I often think how nice it would be to have a quality narrator read my story aloud.
Obviously, no one of a professional grade is going to sit down and record narration for chapters on my unfinished book. But I’m impatient, darn it!
So, in this age of technological wonders, I turned to text-to-speech software. When I initially tried text-to-speech software years ago, I was left somewhat unimpressed by the more accessible (i. e. cheaper) options. I did like a couple of the more expensive software suites, but after the trial period was over I was left out in the cold.
Fortunately, text-to-speech software has come a long way in the past ten years or so, and even the standard installations that come with most computers now are pretty descent.
One piece of software I’ve come across recently is actually an iPhone app. Called NaturalReader it’s a rather powerful little app with quite a selection of voices from which to choose.
While I do have a couple of issues with the app (namely that you have to be online to use it, and the fact that you cannot directly save the audio to a file) it’s still my go-to app for listening to my stories.
I find using the app is good for proofing as well as making revisions. Often times, a sentence might look fine on paper, but sound awkward aloud. This gives me the chance to further refine the text in a way I might not otherwise.
I’m now seriously considering posting new chapters in audio form to YouTube concurent with their release on Wattpad. I am going to go ahead and post a chapter or two and see how things go. Maybe this will be another way to garner more attention to my stories.
The first chapter of Stormrider can be heard HERE. I went with the first chapter instead of the Prologue because it’s generally more digestible for most people.