Elite Dangerous : Premonition Audiobook

Posted by on Nov 6, 2017 in Announcements

The top question I’ve received regarding Elite Dangerous: Premonition (well, other than about boy wizards) has been “When is the audiobook version coming out?”

A little backstory here, if I may. 🙂

When I was writing my first Elite Dangerous novel, Reclamation, back in 2013, I wasn’t really all that aware of audiobooks. I did recall them from my youth, when I’d listened to Treasure Island and Robinson Crusoe, but at the time it hadn’t occurred to me that you did that sort of thing with science fiction.

However, when I undertook a small reading at the original LaveCon back in 2013, the response was hugely positive and it quickly became clear that I had to find a way to provide an audio version of Reclamation. Fortunately my publisher, Fantastic Books, was able, via Kickstarter, to fund the recording of Reclamation and by combining the voice talents of the wonderful Toby Longworth and the recording and edit expertise of Chris Jarvis, Elite Dangerous: Reclamation the audiobook came into existence.

You can play a sample here, courtesy of Audible.

Audiobooks are extremely popular. They provide some notable conveniences. It’s impossible to read a book when you’re driving, but an audiobook is the perfect accompaniment to a long journey – and that applies whether your commute is on a road, train or in supercruise! Some folks either don’t enjoy reading directly, or don’t have the time, whereas an audiobook can fill in that gap.

Additionally, audiobooks bring a different dramatic emphasis to the story. I’ve listened to Reclamation myself and it comes across in a new way in its audio format – not better or worse, but different. The addition of actors, actresses, editors and sound technicians adds new creative ingredients.

Fast forward a few years and the sequel, Elite Dangerous: Premonition is out in ebook and paperback… so where is the audio version?

The answer to that question is that the decision rests with Frontier Developments themselves. Whereas I Kickstarted my license for Reclamation, and FBP kickstarted the production costs of the audio work for it, this time around Premonition is Frontier’s IP, their book. I was commissioned to write it, but the production of different versions of the book is up to them.

Creating an book isn’t cheap, but creating an audiobook is significantly more expensive. You have to pay actors/actresses and their expenses, you have to hire a studio, you have to pay for extensive editing, potentially license music and incorporate sound effects. Ultimately it’s a commercial decision – will sales of the audiobook justify the costs involved in creating it? Can Frontier make a profit? They’re a business at the end of the day.

Many folks want an audiobook version of Premonition. For Frontier to be able to gauge that demand, a forum thread has been set up. If you genuinely want a copy of Premonition in audiobook format, please let them know with a post to that forum, indicating your support and the reason you want it.

Essentially, the more people who indicate their support, the more likely they are to product it – it’s as simple as that! 🙂

At the time of writing 3 pages of posts are already there, which is fabulous. Please keep it coming. I’d love to see this happen myself.

Right on, (and listen on!), Commanders!

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    6 Comments

  1. I know the post is a little old and I’ve also posted on the forums where it has been stated, but do we know if Frontier have made a decision on this? Is there a kickstarter we can help at? I really do want to read this book but I don’t have the time to *read* the book, so to say… I do hope that it can happen, Reclamation was handled expertly, and was a real pleasure to listen to, not to mention one of the more interesting books I’ve “read” in recent years.

    • Hi Matthew. It would seem the decision is ‘no’, or at least, ‘no for now’ from Frontier. I will look at seeing whether I can generate the audiobook another way, but that would require me securing the rights back in some fashion from Frontier (as it’s their IP, I wrote it for them). It is on my list, but I’m currently busy writing my Shadeward series, so I don’t have a timescale I’m afraid.

  2. I’ve just listened to reclamation, I couldnt turn it off, I was born in 1970, so grew up with Star Wars saga, but I do feel reclamation tells a story that is conceivable, I’ve listened to that first chapter several times, it just pulls you in, by chapter 4,i was wanting to see the movie made, I’m also an avid elite fan, I must be honest,i was following on the galaxy map,and had plotted a course for prism in no time at all, I do hope frontier bring your latest to audio book, Ohh and feel free to write many more elite novels, thanks.

    • Glad you enjoyed Reclamation, Michael. 🙂 I was born in 1970 too – obvious a good year for space related shenanigans!

  3. Absolutely loved Reclamation. I wish I had time to sit and read Premonition, but just don’t have the time. Reclamation was a blast to listen to while working or doing as I do in Elite. The narrator did an incredible job as well. And that first chapter really dragged me in.
    If there is ever a kickstarter for Premonition, I’d gladly contribute. Partaking in the Salome event last year was a time and a half, can’t wait to hear the whole story.
    o7, commamder!

    • Thanks Chris! I will bear that in mind if we get the opportunity to do an audiobook. 🙂

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