Do 1 Thing and Hope There Aren’t Any Trains

Photo by Mike Enerio on Unsplash.

It’s Thursday, which means it’s time to Do 1 Thing.

Today, my 1 Thing is to decide what to do about the potential Frugal and the Beast audiobook. I’ve attempted a few recording sessions, but so far they’ve been interrupted by construction within my building, trucks and buses thumping over the bridge outside my building, and train whistles. (Yes, I checked to see if there was an official train schedule so I could plan my recording around the trains. No, there isn’t.)

I could:

  • Keep trying
  • Do the thing where you pause every time there’s a noise and then piece a bunch of disparate audiobook chunks together
  • Stop trying

I could theoretically book four hours at a recording studio for $150 and just knock it out, but every time I spend money on this book I remind myself that I have to sell two books for every $5 I spend just to break even. (Yes, I created a worksheet that shows me exactly how much profit I can plan to make off every book, and how increasing my expenses will affect my bottom line.) Since my goal is to use Frugal and the Beast to fund future Billfold endeavors including PAYING OUR WRITERS MORE and PUBLISHING A BILLFOLD ANTHOLOGY, I’m loathe to spend more than I have to.

So that’s my 1 Thing for today. How about you?

UPDATE: After thinking about my goals for this book — and about the “running a business” lessons I learned from It Doesn’t Have to be Crazy at Work, which I’m going to review on The Billfold later today — I decided to scrap the audiobook and focus on the ebook and print book. Creating an audiobook fails four “running a business” tests:

  1. It increases project scope while diverting focus from the core elements of the project (low-cost ebook, low-cost paperback, marketing plan)
  2. It increases project cost
  3. It increases labor cost (and at this point it’s unpaid labor which is even worse)
  4. It’s a classic example of the low-hanging fruit fallacy (“If we ALSO had an audiobook, we’d sell even MORE copies! How hard can it be to put one together?”)

Plus, since I’m just a grown-up theater kid and not a professional audiobooker, it’ll be the least-polished part of the whole package. I’d rather focus on making the other parts of the Frugal and the Beast project as strong as possible. I hope you understand. ❤︎

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