photo courtesy of H. Michael Kourshis
|In the Wind - the amateur audio version |
I have friends who are blind, and they are frustrated when books they'd like to read are not available in audio editions. Of course, that's usually not under the author's control. Producing a professional audio book is expensive, and only books likely to sell in large numbers will be produced in that format. My books don't fall in that category, so I decided . . . what the heck, why not try creating a DIY version? Using Audacity, a free open source software program, I recorded In the Wind, available here in .mp3 format, chapter by chapter.
I haven't read a book aloud since my kids got too old for it. I'm not an actor, and I don't have a sound studio. My cat wanted to get into the act, so you might occasionally hear him in the background. In short, the quality of this recording is to the professional audio book as a homemade YouTube video is to a Hollywood film. But I wanted to give it a try, if only so that those who can't read the printed text have an option. So here it is, warts and all.
By the way, the somewhat scratchy introductory music is a public domain recording of Blind Lemon Jefferson singing "See that My Grave is Kept Clean." I wanted something that evoked the Chicago blues tradition and was no longer under copyright; the lyrics seemed to fit the opening paragraphs of the story.
A technical hint: if you're using the Firefox browser and want to download the files to save them to your hard drive (though fair warning, they're big), click on a chapter, then choose "save page as" and save it as an .mp3 file.
This audio recording of In the Wind by Barbara Fister is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 United States License. That means you can listen to it, copy it, or modify it for non-commercial purposes so long as you attribute the author and make any derivatives available under the same terms.