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  • Writer's pictureMusic Tectonics

Authors and Artists in the New Audio Ecosystem with Joanna Penn

Updated: Apr 2, 2021

What happens when Amazon and Spotify’s “Audio First” strategies bring music, audiobooks, and podcasts into one audiosphere? Our guide to this new landscape is author, podcaster, and literary entrepreneur Joanna Penn.

Joanna takes host Tristra Newyear Yeager on a tour of the evolution of audio and authorship, and how a digital revolution is shaking up that world too. Find out how the streaming economy affects indie authors and indie musicians in similar ways, and how they both need to adapt. What near future tech will help reader/listeners find the content they want from the voices that matter to them? Will AI steal authors’ and narrators’ jobs? When boundaries between music, audiobooks and podcasts blur, what creative collaborations will arise?

For more tips on writing and publishing, check out Joanna's free Author Blueprint at or join her every Monday on The Creative Penn Podcast, available on your favorite podcast app.

Find the wealth of tools and projects Joanna shouts out in this episode:

Audible: a la carte and subscription audiobooks in the U.S.

Storytel: audiobook subscription service outside the U.S.

ACX: audiobook distribution to Amazon and Audible.

Findaway Voices: audiobook distribution to 42 different retailers around the world as well as Direct To Fan via Authors Direct.

Chirp books: discounted audiobook retailer

Bookfunnel: tools for DTF Audiobook sales

Descript: audio editing tool with a text transcript interface, including overdubbing with voice doubles.

Replica Studios: AI Voice Actors for Gaming

Amazon Polly: Lifelike AI speech for a variety of applications

Microsoft’s Custom Neural Voice: text-to-speech voices that sound very real

Google Play’s audio-narrated audiobooks: AI narration as a publisher tool.

Open AI’s GPT-3: AI text generation

OpenAI’s MuseNet: Neural net music compositions

The Salvage Crew by Yudhanjaya Wijeratne: Sci-fi novel featuring an AI character with dialogue generated by AI.

The Inevitable by Kevin Kelly: Working closely with AI and bots is our future.

Listen to the full episode here or wherever you pod your favorite casts.

Let us know what you think! Tweet @MusicTectonics, find us on Facebook and Instagram, or connect with podcast host Dmitri Vietze on LinkedIn, Twitter, and Facebook.

The Music Tectonics podcast goes beneath the surface of the music industry to explore how technology is changing the way business gets done. Weekly episodes include interviews with music tech movers & shakers, deep dives into seismic shifts, and more.


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