The National Library Service, as part of its braille modernization initiative, has launched a braille-on-demand program which allows patrons to request copies of hard copy braille to keep indefinitely. Patrons may order up to five titles per month. Titles are limited to those that are available on BARD Braille and Audio Reading Download page, and only complete titles will be distributed. The form to request a book can be found here. Patrons may complete the form themselves or contact the Indiana Talking Book and Braille Library for assistance. The books are being produced by Clovernook Braille Printing House in Cincinnati. The title requested most so far is “A Treasury of Knitting Patterns” by Barbara G. Walker. The Lord of the Rings and Harry Potter series have also proved popular.
NLS’ Patron Engagement Section now offers a monthly program called The Many Faces of BARD. This program will occur on the second Thursday of every month at 7 p.m. Eastern time. It will last for one hour and cover one aspect of BARD usage. Each program will start with a brief presentation. The remainder of the time will be spent answering questions about the presentation or other questions related to BARD usage. NLS will announce the topic for the next presentation at the end of each program. These sessions are open to all patrons and can be joined upon request.
This post was written by Laura Williams, supervisor of the Indiana Talking Book and Braille Library.
Indiana Voices, part of the Indiana Talking Book and Braille Library at the Indiana State Library, records Indiana-related materials for residents of Indiana who cannot use standard printed materials due to visual or physical disabilities. In the past few years, the reach of the Indiana Voices program has expanded as the National Library Service (NLS) has allowed the inclusion of locally recorded materials to their Braille and Audio Reading Download (BARD) service for patrons nationwide to download and enjoy.
Since the process of recording a book is so time consuming, we put a lot of thought into each book we choose for recording. Just because a book meets the Indiana-related criteria for the program does not mean that we will be able to record it. When choosing books to record we take into account positive reviews for a book, whether the book covers a subject of interest to our patrons, whether the book covers a subject our collection is lacking in and whether the books is available in an accessible format elsewhere.
Emmy Award-winner Dick Wolfsie of WISH-TV visited the Indiana Voices studio in January.
The most important criteria for what books should be added to the collection is rather simple: What do our patrons want to read? Our patrons tend to enjoy mysteries, westerns, religious fiction and historical fiction, along with non-fiction topics like war diaries, biographies and true crime. Patrons also always enjoy books by classic Hoosier authors such as George Barr McCutcheon, Meredith Nicholson, Booth Tarkington and Gene Stratton-Porter. These titles are easily available by simply perusing the book collection located in the Indiana Authors Room here at the state library.
Indiana Voices is always open to input from Talking Book and Braille Library patrons as to what types of titles they would like to see added to the collection. If you would like to make a suggestion, please feel free to contact Linden Coffman via email or via phone at (317) 232-3683.
This blog post was written by Linden Coffman, director of Indiana Voices. For more information about the Talking Book and Braille Library, call 1(800) 622-4970 or send an email.