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What’s happening in the audiobook world? Here’s a round-up of interesting links…

I am totally inspired by the Contra Costa County (CA) Public Library’s “Snap & Go” project to bring library services to mobile phones, winner of the 2012 John Cotton Dana Public Relations Award. When I saw this promotion on the library’s website…

Now on WestCAT buses: Snap & Go QR Technology

Powered by WestCAT and the Contra Costa County Library

Listen to over 600 audiobook titles on the bus with the Contra Costa County Library’s Snap & Go mobile library access. Wirelessly download audiobooks directly to your cell phone for FREE. It’s a great way to pass time on the bus.

Easy as 1-2-3

1) Download a free QR code reader to your phone fromsnapngo.ccclib.org (1x only)

2) Scan the code from a library poster on Tri Delta Transit buses or wherever you see it posted.

3) Select an audiobook to download and enjoy the ride!

I immediately thought about how to make this happen in my school library, stole shared the idea and brainstormed with my public library partner George Morrison. We’re dreaming up ways to pilot this idea on school buses this fall, with the tag line “Stuck on a Bus?” How about QR codes for links to audiobooks of required classroom reads? Bookmarks with QR codes to a genre list of top teen audiobooks or list of always-available classics in both eBook and audio format? What a great project to tweak and tailor to your population – find out more in this article.

The National Endowment for the Arts has released the newest batch of ” “The Big Read” classic titles for adults and teens. The 31 titles each include a “Learn More” tab for an introductory Preface, a Reader’s Guide, Teacher’s Guide and an awesome Audio Guide for each title. The approximately 30 minute Audio Guide is perfect to expand a listener’s appreciation of a book, to add to your library website or for teachers to add to a novel unit.  The Big Read will highlight a different audio guide about a Big Read book and author every 2 weeks. You can subscribe the podcast using iTunes, or any other podcatching tool.

To Prep Or Not to Prep? That Is The Question” is the title of Grammy Award-winning audiobook producer/director Paul Ruben’s newest blog post on the positives & pitfalls of narrators preparing a book for recording. If you’d like an insider’s view of the art & craft of audiobook production, you can’t get much better than the revealing posts in Ruben’s blog.

NPR’s Press-Play Poetry website is the perfect antidote for listeners with heat-induced short attention spans. The newest post of audible poetry is “Summer Song” by William Carlos Williams, along with the poem’s text and background information.

Another audio production insider, Allan Toving of Tantor Audio, has “Tantorious,” an audio blog  where you can download and listen to narrators & author chat about their current productions. He’s up to 25 programs for audio fans to enjoy.

Are you an audio fan looking for a laugh? Want to promote your audiobook collection in your school or public library? Check out the finalists of the Audio Publishers Association’s “Get Caught Listening” video contest here. Plus, grab the free promotional materials on the “Get Caught Listening” website. And check out the winning video “J.J. Comes Home” below – inspired by 50 Shades of Gray???

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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.

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