Zachary Quinto to Narrate “The Dispatcher,” To Be Released by Audible October 4

And Entertainment Weekly has the scoop! So go there for details, including a link to pre-order. Note the cost. It’s not a typo.

EW has the scoop, but I will now add a few answers to additional questions I think you might have.

Is there going to be a print edition? Yes, there will be, from Subterranean Press, which includes some amazing artwork. Audible has the novella as an exclusive for a certain amount of time, but SubPress will have it after that window expires. Expect it in 2017. More details when I can give them to you.

Does this mean you’re not working with Wil Wheaton in audio anymore? No, it just means we went with someone else for this particular project. If I have my druthers, Wil and I will be collaborating again, and often. But, you know. I already work with other narrators (including William Dufris, Tavia Gilbert and Amber Benson), and Wil of course works with other authors, including Ernie Cline. We have an open relationship, as it were.

Whoa, Zachary Quinto is cool. That’s not a question, but I agree. And I think he’s going to be just about perfect for The Dispatcher. I can’t wait for you all to hear this one. I’m not going to lie to you. It’s pretty good.

Any additional questions? Drop them into the comments.

55 Comments on “Zachary Quinto to Narrate “The Dispatcher,” To Be Released by Audible October 4”

  1. Ohhh. Really interesting premise. Looking forward to it.
    Two questions:
    1. On free stuff like this do you still get paid per sale or is it handled a different way?
    2. How does the choosing a narrator thing work from your end?

  2. Dan:

    I definitely got paid, and well, but at the moment that’s all I’m going to say about it. With the narrator I was advised and I offered input, but ultimately it was Audible’s decision.


    Don’t know if he’s read it.

  3. I think I’ll stick with the little voice in my head and wait for print.

    (+1 for Wil. Love his work)

  4. Pre-ordered! Sounds interesting. And while I feel a little guilty about the price, I also know my husband, who doesn’t do audiobooks, is likely to pick up the ebook or dead tree version when it comes out, so.

  5. po8crg:

    It should be.


    Don’t feel guilty about the price. We priced it that. But yes, buying the printed edition would make me happy, too!

  6. Thanks for the answers! In past experience it seems that Audible does an amazing job choosing narrators. Can’t wait to hear him read (I LOVE Will when he reads but there definitely are some books that are a better for for other narrators).

  7. Dammit Scalzi you’ve done it again. I’d never ordered an audiobook before today and now I have because of you!!! (Which of course is exactly what Audible and Amazon were hoping for by offering it free)

  8. Yay! Loved your reading from The Dispatcher on last year’s book tour. Pre-ordered my first audio book.

  9. Hey without the glasses you two would look the same. :^)
    Good looking guys with beards.

  10. I’ll make an extra donation to the Toronto Public Library. I currently do so monthly. Really looking forward to this!

  11. I’ve never ordered from Audible either. And I’ve been waiting over a year for this thing!

    About darn time!

    And I say that with all the love, admiration, patience, and respect one can muster.

    More seriously, this really is going to be the work that gets me onto Audible. Congrats to you both for the successful project.


  12. @Scalzi Thanks. The link from EW bounced me to the homepage, rather than the specific book page, which usually means that the book is only on ,com and not on, which is why I asked – but, knowing there was something to search for, I did a search and found it, at the same price (a rare case where the falling pound isn’t making things more expensive).

  13. Squee! Pre-ordered. It’s like Scalzi and Audible teamed up to give me a birthday gift!! Slightly belated (My birthday is 10/2) but I’ll deal with it.

    I held out against audio books for a long time. Then because my travel buddy loves them it was “OK, we’ll listen in the car on roadtrips. But non-fiction only.” Now it’s, “what do you mean? There’s not going to be an audio version?? I can’t be expected to drag my eyes back and forth across a line of type while HOLDING a book or an ereader. That’s just primitive.”

  14. Hurrah! I really enjoyed hearing the excerpt you read at your trip to Borderlands. Have you ever considered being the narrator for one of your own audiobooks?

  15. Excellent! Very easy to order in the UK and the price is perfect! I have Redshirts as an audiobook and in print. Both are good for different times, I had read the print version but then got the audiobook for when I had surgery!

  16. I’ve been fond of Quinto ever since, after darkening his image for TV watchers in Heroes, and not being seen (by me) acting on any other show, he went on to salvage something of his career by producing and acting in the feature film Margin Call. (Say, Remember when the 2008 Recession was still called the Wall Street Melt Down?)

    I see on the web that he is described as a producer, true enough, but he’ll always be an actor to me.

  17. Dispatcher? But I hardly even KNOW ‘er!

    Yeah, I came here just to say that. After I pre-ordered, of course.

  18. Audiobooks are great, and you get a fewf book credits free per month with Audible, so it helps a tight budget.

    Zack Quinto was great as Sylar in Heroes, and his did well as Spock (though Leonard Nimoy will always be the defining Spock for me). Zack should kick butt for a science fiction thriller like the story premise.

    Wil Wheaton: The guy is just plain cool and smart and a wonderful geeky guy. Too bad they didn’t write the Wesley Crusher character better. That didn’t do justice to Wil’s acting talents or to TNG. I think Trek could have benefitted from having a believable teen learning how to be a starship officer. DS9 managed slightly better with Jake and Nog.

  19. I meant to add: I’m vision-impaired, so audiobooks are incressingly my best way to get new books. A good story and a good narrator / reader or cast ensemble and you’re in for a treat.

    I do notice that listening versus seeing can affect my attention span and comprehension / retention of either fiction or non-fiction, differing for each. This is something to consider, depending on what kind of learner you are. But I think it’s something you can also develop with practice.

    Audiobooks can be a real plus if you have long periods to wait with not enough to do, such as commuting or waiting on your ride.

  20. Just a thought: Have you considered approaching any graphic novel publishers for your shorter works? Seems like a match made in heaven. Longer works too, of course, but the effort involved (thus, cost and time) is much higher for novel-length work.

  21. I’m usually to cheap to buy the audiobook, but in this case the price was right.

    Usually I get the e-book and use text-to-speech on my iPhone to listen. It makes it easy to pick up where I left off if I get a few moments to read with my eyes.

    TTS is much better than it used to be but I’ve thought since the early Amazon Kindle days (Old Man’s War was one of my first e-books, and Scalzi is the first author that I have read exclusively on e-book) that they ought to be “hinted”, so difficult-to-pronounce words and text in other languages could be pronounced correctly. My Kindle used to say “Drive Livingston, I presume,” And it had the annoying habit of calling the main character in Maximum Overdrive “Maximum” when her name (Max) appeared at the end of a sentence.

    To take it a step further, some text could be hinted for emphasis, and dialogue could be hinted for the character who was speaking, so the reader software could switch voices for each character.

    Maybe this is the wrong place to say this, because it could take income away from Quinto and Wheaton.

  22. I just started a new job with a 1 1/2-2 hour commute, depending on whether traffic cooperates or not. I thoroughly enjoy having someone tell me a story to pass the time. Pair that with the fact that I like the stories you tell, and this was a no-brainer. And that was before I realized it was free!

  23. Chukg:

    Because Audible asked for it and brought along a suitcase filled with money.

    Geoff Hart:

    I love graphic novels but the limiting factor in my case is generally time, as in, I already don’t have enough of it.

  24. Dear John,

    Umm, well, okay, but…

    When Zachary steals your authorial super-powers and you are reduced to writing Hallmark greeting cards, don’t say you weren’t warned.

    pax / Ctein

  25. For once, i’m ahead of the curve — I pre-ordered my copy almost a week ago. And so I don’t miss Wil too much when ‘The Dispatcher’ comes out, I am re-re-re-re-re-re-listening to ‘Fuzzy Nation’. I may fit in my umpteenth listen of ‘Android’s Dream’ (my personal favorite) before October as well. Thanks for the freebie Mr. S.

  26. Copy ordered (not my first audiobook, but my first through Audible), followed by a cash donation to LINK Inc., a food bank in your old stomping grounds of Sterling VA (they also serve next door Herndon where I live). Thanks for more Scalzi content and the nudge to pay it forward!

  27. Did a quick search on audible germany – sadly they don’t seem to have it.
    For this I would gladly reactivate my audible account.

    Also: Interesting choice for narrator. Though I love love love audiobooks read by Wil Wheaton (and even bought some just because he narrated them) I am pretty excited how this will end up.

  28. Anna,

    Fuzzy Nation is one of my most re-heard audiobooks too! Thanks in part to Wil, it’s become my favourite Scalzi book.

    (Audible subscriber here. About to preorder this book. Hooray!)

  29. Yay! I could listen to Quinto read he phone book, but this will be far more entertaining, I’m sure. Nicely done by all involved.

  30. @Christoph – While may rudely redirect you to when you first try to reach it, they do give you the option of moving on to the US site if you confirm that’s what you *really* wanted. You can use your German account credentials and a German billing address.
    I have no idea why this is possible (you cannot buy e-books this way on Amazon US).

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