About ten (10) years ago, I discovered the format of Audio Book. I used to read printed paper books, but now I could do other activities while “reading” text.
I could do house chores, go for a walk, prepare meals, save money and valuable space.
Recently I also moved to an Electronic book (Model: OnyxBoox: Caesar).
I could easily find 90% percent of desired published books by English and Russian authors. Of course, the voice actors had to be professional or at least pleasant.
To my surprise, some fiction was accompanied by a musical score theme.
It was great! I felt good for keeping “reading”, and did not lose track.
Every year my potency grew.
BUT. For those books that agencies felt were too unimportant to prepare, or the amateurs could not make worse than they did or were missing in my preferable language;
I felt there had to be a solution I was missing.
And so, I present to you “TextAloud“.
You may give it a free trial, buy it, or even get in those parts of the internet we all know.
You simply insert a text, select the kind of voice you want, and preferences*,
press “Read to file”.
Voila! You now have an MP3 file, easy to handle and which fits on any device.
You could break the text into several consequent files if too large:
store them, and use one per-session.
As for the voices, thank god it does not sound like Google’s Translate or Speak&Spell.
It comes with one or two default options, but I would recommend
“PAUL” a.k.a PAUL16 by NextUp / NeoSpeech.
It is an american/UK, male, pleasant voice, and which isn’t dull. Best I’ve found.
There are dozens of other voices, male and female, for virtually any language. You can also submit your own version if you are so inclined.
The only problem I found – The program does not treat sentences
Like this, going down a line when that has no period at the end of it.
It also pronounces all-caps words like NOT – into – N. O. T… With no intonation.
therefore you should always check your text before making the audio for all sorts of mistakes. Experimentaation is the name of the game.
Usually, you just edit the taglines and titles and make sure it is a one-column text.
Deleting page numbers could help too.
- The good thing is – YOU are now in charge.
And in the settings- you can make all kinds of changes!
You can edit pitch, volume, etc.
Need more time to acknowledge the material? Make the speech slower.
Or just make a bigger pause after a sentence is ended and a new one begins.
- P.P.S – The program has the potential for all sorts of uses.
Try them. Use your imagination.
P.S. – As of today, I have already listened to complete books like;
- The Ted Kaczynski Manifesto.
- THE END OF ALL EVIL by Jeremy Locke.
- The (alleged) protocols of the elders of Zion.