How to Convert an Ebook to Audio
By Ruth de Jauregui
eBooks make it easy to carry several books in one simple electronic reader, but if you're in a situation where you can't look at your electronic reader--while you're driving to and from work, for example--having your eBook as an audio file might come in handy. There are several text-to-speech software programs that allow you to convert your favorite eBooks from text to audio files, and they're all fairly easy to use.
Browse various text-to-speech (TTS) programs (see Resources). There are a number of software programs available online, each with varying degrees of realistic voices. Some, like Zabaware, offer a free download so you can preview the program.
Select and purchase a TTS program. Some can be downloaded directly to your computer. Others are quite large and are only available on CD-ROM. If you're looking for a more "natural" voice, consider a program that features ATT Natural Voices. For an extra fee, you can select and purchase "Mike," "Crystal" or another natural-sounding voice.
Download the program. Once installed, TTS programs, which are relatively easy to use, convert the eBook to a wav. audio file. Simply follow the instructions provided with the program. After converting the eBook, burn the audio file to a CD so you can listen while you drive, wash dishes, shower or do other activities.
Convert to the audio file to the MP3 format. If you prefer to listen on your MP3 player, there are free downloads for wav.-to-MP3 conversion software available at at CNET's Download.com (see Resources). Simply select and download the freeware of your choice, then convert the wav. file to MP3. Save to your computer and then download to your MP3 player.
- Audio books help dyslexic and slow readers keep up in school.
- Many eBooks are available for free at Gutenberg.org.
- You can also try services, such as Neospeech.com, that will convert your text to speech.
- Selling or sharing the audio copy of your eBook online is copyright infringement, which is illegal.
- Freeware is good, but purchasing the full program usually provides more features.
- Not all eBooks on Gutenberg.org are copyright-free outside of the United States.
With degrees in fine and commercial art and Spanish, Ruth de Jauregui is an old-school graphic artist, book designer and published author. De Jauregui authored 50 Fabulous Tomatoes for Your Garden, available as an ebook. She enthusiastically pursues creative and community interests, including gardening, home improvement and social issues.