Audiobook Webinar Update

Couldn’t attend? Now Hear This: Audiobooks from A to Z archive is now available FREE: Great suggestions for new acquisitions and summer listening from presenters Cheryl Herman, Library Marketing Director, Books on Tape/Listening Library; Michele Lee Cobb, Director of Marketing, BBC Audiobooks America; and Susan Lovley, Director of Sales and Marketing, HighBridge Audio. As the session moderator, I fielded a few question I thought might be of general interest, so here they are…

Q: Why are audio books so expensive?
The three main costs for an audiobook are the costs of the rights to record, the cost of the recording itself and the costs to recreate the artwork to match the book. There are also basic format costs such as packaging and components (CDs). Just like film production involves a lot of talented people, so does audio production and there is always a cost for quality! At BBC Audiobooks America we’ve kept our CD costs the same since we began producing them more than a decade ago and we have over 2200 titles available that are less than $50 before you take into account any discount. Lots of affordable products for budgets of all sizes! (Answer from Michele Cobb)

Q: What recommendations do you have for young adults?
Check out my June “Voices in My Head” column in Booklist, “Summer Family Listening.” Bonus! The BooklistOnline edition of the column <> has eight titles that didn’t fit in the print edition 🙂 Plus, you might like this printable PDF <> of bookmarks with two family listening audiobook lists I created for Book Links Magazine: “Girl Talk” & “Guys & Spies.” Plus, don’t forget the recommended lists posted in response to a similar question below.  MB

(Answer from Michele Cobb)
During the webinar I mentioned a number of wonderful crossover titles from BBC Audiobooks America – Slumdog Millionaire, Lord of the Rings, Jaws, The Lincoln Douglas Debates. We also carry a wide range of authors such as P.C. and Kristin Cast, Alyson Noel and Orson Scott Card. Check out our recommended Young Adult List.

Q: What is the difference between a library edition and a retail unabridged edition, besides price?
A: Library editions are packaged in heavy-duty cases, to withstand long-term library circulation. Often library processing and MARC records are available. Plus, most companies offer replacement of media or cases, some with 100% lifetime guarantees. Check individual publisher’s website for details (see my blog’s homepage sidebar for web links). MB

Q: What are some of the best resources for Reading Advisory Librarians?
A: Subscribe to Booklist‘s free email newsletters and add the whole array of Booklist blogs to your RSS reader. Stay tuned to Booklist‘s free webinars listed here, or check out the list of archived past sessions. ALA Publications has a great batch of Readers’ Advisory titles, including the marvelous second edition of Joyce Saricks’  The Readers’ Advisory Guide to Genre Fiction. Brad Hooper’s Writing Reviews for Readers’ Advisory includes a chapter on audiobook reviews written by Saricks. The Readers’ Advisory Handbook, edited by Jessica E. Moyer & Kaite Mediatore Stover, has a chapter on audiobook RA written by Sue-Ellen Beauregard, Booklist’s Media editor. And don’t forget the selection tools mentioned in the complete webinar!  MB

Q:  Do you have any suggestions for YA and younger readers?
A: Besides the resources above, be sure to check the ALA awards & lists mentioned in the webinar: Amazing Audiobook for Young Adults, Notable Children’s Recordings, and the Odyssey Award for Excellence in Audiobook Production.  Sharon Grover, past chair of the Odyssey Award Committee, has a great list of summer listening selections for kids & teens available here <> on the AudioFile Magazine website.  MB

Q: Can Mary provide a link for the source of these stats? Thanks.
A: The Audio Publishers Association <> compiles industry & consumer statistics, with resources posted on their website.  MB

Q: Can anyone tell me about libraries they know of that are currently conducting audiobook clubs? I’d like to contact librarians to learn more about how they run their programs.
A: Check out my Audiobook blog post on Audiobook Book Clubs <> for more hints and links to innovative programs.  MB



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About the Author:

Mary Burkey is an independent library consultant in Columbus (OH). An enthusiastic audiophile, she has served on all four of ALA's audiobook award committees as well as the Audies. In addition to writing the "Voices in My Head" column for Booklist, she is the author of Audiobooks for Youth: A Practical Guide to Sound Literature (ALA, 2013). Follow her on Twitter at @mburkey.

2 Comments on "Audiobook Webinar Update"

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  1.' Sue-Ellen says:

    Those were some good questions from our participants, thanks, Mary and Michele for answering them. If there are any other questions, I am sure you could post them here and Mary or others can answer.

  2. So I enjoy audio books. Whenever I am in my car, this is what I do.
    I recently listened to Endor’s Game by Orson Scott Card. If I am writing books for second graders, I listen to Junie B. Jones or Stink. I started the year listening to the Thief Lord and two Harry Potter books on CD. My friend hooked me into listening to Patterson books, Clive Custler books, and Ludlum. And then there was a book called the Vine. Ohh! That was a scary book.
    The Exile is excellent and so is People of the Book. One of my all time favorite books from this year is The Messenger by Daniel Silva. He is a great spy writer.
    Alas, I must pull myself back to book genre’s I am writing for like Kate Dicamelo’s the Tale of Despereau, the Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane.
    That’s about it.

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