The Ultimate Guide to becoming an Audiobook Narrator

Working from home


Narrating audiobooks is one of the most overlooked work from home opportunities that exist today. Most people don't even know that this opportunity is available to them. Audiobook narrators can earn hundreds or even thousands of dollars for each book that they record and most narrators are freelancers working from home. Best of all, you don't need any experience or education to get started. 

In this guide I'll walk you through everything that you need to know to get up and running quickly so that you can get your first paid audiobook job, gain experience, and start building your narration portfolio. 


What is an audiobook narrator? 

A narrator is a person who is hired by an author or publisher to read and record an audible version of their book. You've probably seen audiobooks being sold on sites like Amazon and Audible. These spoken word books were all created by a narrator. 


How much do narrators get paid? 

It depends. There are two main ways that a narrator can get paid for their work: 

1) Flat rate payments based on the length of the book, and 

2) Royalty share payments that give a percentage (usually 50%) of royalties from each sale to the narrator. 

Flat rate payments are typically calculated with an hourly rate based on the total listen time of the book. $50-$400 per finished hour (PFH) of audio is fairly common for freelance narration work.  For example, if your rate is $200 PFH, you would earn $1,600 for narrating an 8 hour long novel. 

You can read a case study of what I earned with my very first audiobook narration projects here. 


Who is audiobook narration right for? 

  • People who love books.
  • People who enjoy speaking or vocal performance.
  • Voice artists and actors.
  • Anyone looking for a part-time or full-time job that allows them to work from home. 
  • People who need a flexible work schedule.
  • People of all ages and dialects.