Fiction and audio publishing platform Serial Box is rebranding to Realm and rejiggering its distribution model to release original, ad-supported podcasts.
The six-year-old company made its name as a pay-to-read serial fiction platform, publishing stories from established writers and companies like Marvel and DC in episodic chunks. It later began to produce similar episodic audio content, and to date has attracted 1.3 million listeners for around 1,000 hours of audio across 60 original series, Variety reports.
Now, Realm is stripping out the podcast paywall: it’ll distribute a number of its originals across various platforms–including Spotify, Apple Podcasts, Google Podcast, and Stitcher–for free.
“It’s a major change to the revenue model,” Realm cofounder and CEO Molly Barton told Variety. “We are coming to the podcast ecosystem with some unique advantages.”
For podcasts that remain paywalled, Realm is offering a new encompassing subscription—$3.99 per month or $30 per year for unlimited listening to all series.
Per Variety, podcasts that will be made free to listen this month include:
- Orphan Black: The Next Chapter, written by Malka Older, which picks up the Clone Club story eight years after the end of the TV series;
- Beatrix Greene, a horror series set in Victorian England written by writer Rachel Hawkins;
- Memory Lane, a sci-fi drama written by Sara Shepard (“Pretty Little Liars”);
- Gods & Lies, a fantasy murder-mystery created and written by Elizabeth Vail;
- Ctrl-Alt-Destroy, in which a video game designer discovers that the game she created has been stolen as part of a top-secret project, narrated by “Firefly” star Summer Glau;
- Machina, about two rival tech companies competing for the chance to bring AI to Mars, created and written by Fran Wilde; and
- The Triangle, in which a U.S. Navy officer tries to uncover the truth behind why his former ship vanished in the Bermuda Triangle, created and written by Dan Koboldt.
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