Good morning bookies!

West Tennessee is wet and cold today, so let’s get straight to book stuff. I don’t know about you but I love audiobooks. I have for a long time now. Back in the late 80’s-early 90’s I had a job that had me driving all over the southeast and south, from Texas to Florida to North Carolina and home to Tennessee. I had a company car, or rather a company van, each of which was equipped with a fine stereo system and one of which had a showpiece audio system. 29 speakers, 17 of which were sub-woofers, 9 amplifiers, etc. I could literally make my windshield ripple from the sound pressure. And, for a while, it was great listening to music on those long drives of 8 or 10 hours. But only for a while. After a few years I wanted nothing more than silence while putting miles on the van, but the danger was that silence lead to fatigue and fatigue lead to car wrecks and…well, you get the idea.

And then I found the audiobook. Pop in something good read by a great narrator and presto! You’re two hours down the road and don’t remember getting there. Without exaggeration, audiobooks extended that career by at least two years, otherwise I would have gone nuts and quit.

So today’s link is a nice article on the future of audiobooks and featuring none other than Neil Gaiman, sort of the Superman of nuevo-Horror. I have long been thinking about getting an MP3 player and this makes it seem like a worthy investment.

Neil Gaiman and the future of the spoken word

As a bonus for today, let’s also look at one of my favorite sites, Librivox features books in the public domain that are free to anyone. You can download them in MP3 format, or download the whole book and burn it to disc, which is what I do. The readers are all volunteers, which means that some are good, some are bad and some have accents so thick you can barely tell they are speaking English. But they are free, so what do you want? I’m currently listening to Book Two of The History of the Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire by Edward Gibbon, I’m on disc 17 of 22, which 20 discs in book one. There are six books altogether. Whew! I’m glad it’s free. Now if I only had an MP3 player.