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submitted 1 month ago* (last edited 1 month ago) by [email protected] to c/nostupidquestions

I listen to a decent amount of audiobooks and I'll occasionally miss a one-off description of something important. I was wondering if there are projects to add a visual component to audiobooks? Official or fan-made it doesn't matter. If it does exist what would I search for to find something like this?

Maybe a video with AI generated images and the listener is required to supply their own audiobook or something like that.

I feel like I have seen this done with the Bible several times.


Edit: It seems like the answer is no.

People have suggested movies, VNs, and point and click games but that's more than what I am after. All I really want is something that accompanies the audio that can occasionally act as a quick reference. If you are still have trouble imagining what I am talking about think of an audio-only podcast that is uploaded to Youtube. They might add a photo in post to accompany what they are talking about but you can still enjoy it without the visual aspect.

I thought there might be a group of people on Youtube doing this with AI images or an audiobook publisher commissioning art to do this.

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[-] [email protected] 11 points 1 month ago* (last edited 1 month ago)

I think these are called "films."


Seriously, though, I do like the idea of an audio-pop-up-book. But when I was thinking about how it would work my mind said "...isn't that just a film with extra steps?"


Perhaps the film version of Society of the Spectacle might be something of the type you're thinking about. It's mostly a reading from the book overlaid over a film.

[-] [email protected] 5 points 1 month ago* (last edited 1 month ago)

I'm imagining a picture just pops up occasionally to help with visual. Whenever a new important character is introduced, whenever you arrive to a new place that has descriptions. If an important devise is introduced, it would really depend on the book but ideally you would only glance like once every couple dozen minutes if you wanted to. I already open a tab and Google to see what's people interpretations are of stuff. This would just make it easier.

[-] [email protected] 2 points 1 month ago

That's exactly it. I was reading At the Mountains of Madness for example and because the Elder Things were such odd creatures I had to look up a photo to put it all together.

[-] [email protected] 4 points 1 month ago* (last edited 1 month ago)

What I am after is a bit different than a film or placing down stock footage for some visual stimuli.

In my mind it would be situations where something like the setting or the appearance of the protagonist has been described. Images would come up in a slideshow-like fashion and stay up for maybe a chapter. I could look up things like cover art, fan art, or auxiliary works like graphic novels but it can be a bit distracting to do that.

It would be a bit like some podcasts that are uploaded to Youtube in that way. Mostly just a logo and audio but they occasionally throw up images to accompany something they are discussing but you aren't missing a ton by not staring at a screen.

[-] recapitated 5 points 1 month ago

You might want to check out some movies. Some of them are based on books, for example "The Wizard of Oz" is a pretty popular one.

[-] [email protected] 2 points 1 month ago

Someone else made a similar comment that I responded to. I basically said I am not looking to be staring at the screen the entire time. I still want the audiobook experience but a quick visual reference I don't have to manually pull up would be nice.

[-] SzethFriendOfNimi 4 points 1 month ago

Can’t speak to anything in general but for anything related to Brandon Sanderson there’s coppermind.

Any time the narrator is describing an illustration I’ll look up the book art from there.

Otherwise I avoid it like the plague to avoid spoilers

[-] Fondots 3 points 1 month ago

I've seen a couple places offering what they'll call something like "enhanced ebooks"

I admit that I haven't given any of them a try, but the gist is that they're an ebook with some extra multimedia content. It kind of looks like some places that do them do the absolute bare minimum to slap the "enhanced" label on them and just add some extra pictures and maps and such, and others go whole hog with added video, the full audio drama treatment with sound effects, different actors for the various characters, narration, etc. so some of them may potentially fill the role you're looking for

[-] Meron35 3 points 1 month ago

You've basically described a simple visual novel. Much more of a thing for Japanese media, but the idea has recently started to catch on for Western media.

For example, Pillars of the Earth was adapted as a point and click game/visual novel. These are very rare though.

[-] [email protected] 3 points 1 month ago* (last edited 1 month ago)

Pretty much. I was going to mention VNs but I feel like even the traditional Ren'Py layout with characters laid on top of a static background is beyond what I am looking for and I am also not looking for any kind of player choice.

I Have No Mouth But I Must Scream for example is a short story but was also adapted into a video game. I could play the game but I am looking to enjoy a more passive experience. That said I would be happy with a video that contained just imagines from the game if they matched the book.


Quick note for those interested ScummVM is a fantastic way to play these kind of point and click adventure games. It's available on pretty much every platform you can think of from the Windows 95 to Android.

[-] [email protected] 2 points 1 month ago

Maybe you'd be interested in "kinetic novels"? They're basically VNs without choices.

[-] Meron35 1 points 1 month ago

More passive media formats include drama CDs (again mostly for Japanese media) and radio plays (fallen out of favour). Both of these usually come with extra promotional material such as a booklet with the script and some images.

Some audio books and podcasts with higher production values also have extra companion guides/supplementary content. Though, these are mainly for non fiction texts to display diagrams etc.

If you are into non fiction, Ken Burns documentaries are basically audio books that happen to have visual content. A less traditional format are museum audio guides, such as the British Museum and Louvre apps.

[-] [email protected] 2 points 1 month ago* (last edited 1 month ago)

The most I can think of are motion comics (with sound). They're sort of in-between audio books and animation, mostly voice acting but sometimes also explaining a scene.

DC for example used to make them, like this one: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zZjrOEs8Ss0

Looks like they went out of fashion though. A real shame, many of them had stellar voice acting and actually good production value.

[-] BeatTakeshi 1 points 1 month ago* (last edited 1 month ago)

Not what you are looking for but I remember on psp there was Metal Gear Solid "digital graphic novels". Basically narrated comics

[-] [email protected] 1 points 1 month ago* (last edited 1 month ago)

One of (or both of?) The dudes from Mars Volta wrote a book that comes with both an accompanying audio reading of the book with music in the background, and an art book you're meant to follow along with. I forgot what it's called; one of my friends from years ago had it when he got super into the band. It's pretty trippy though. IIRC, it's like a tribute to one of their friends that had died.

this post was submitted on 22 Apr 2024
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