31 December 2008
Fax your agreements in to 253.4808, or return by mail to Post Office Box 264, Middlebury, 05753. Be sure to contact Stephanie at schase[at]stowelibrary.org with any questions, or if you didn't receive an agreement.
30 December 2008
Bent Northrup Memorial Library, Fairfield
Fairlee Public Library
Flood Brook Union School, Londonderry
Georgia Public Library
Hartland Public Library
Mark Skinner Library, Manchester
Martha Canfield Library, Arlington
Middletown Springs Public Library
Reading Public Library
Platt Memorial Library, Shoreham
South Burlington Community Library
South Hero Community Library
St. Johnsbury Athenaeum
29 December 2008
Digital Library 101s –
Tuesday January 20th at 10am EST
Wednesday January 21st at 11am EST
Tuesday January 20th at 3pm EST
As in the past, these trainings will be conducted using ReadyTalk, so all you need is a computer that's online and a phone that you can be on at the same time. There's no need to RSVP -- just show up! Please email Stephanie at schase[at]stowelibrary.org if you need the passcode information.
15 December 2008
"Wondering if you have seen the problem I am having. I sign in as a patron, say their number is: 114. Then if I sign out, and try to sign in as another patron, say 115. It automatically goes to patron 114. It doesn't give me the chance to sign in as someone else. Any ideas?"
I know we've come up against this before -- at a school, where the Librarian is handling and demonstrating downloads, and at public library demos. Can anyone share what they did to get around it, aside from clearing out the cache?
08 December 2008
In our handy Box widget, you'll find a great introductory handout created by Amy Grasmick at Randolph (intro handout.doc or .pdf), a generic press release by David Clark from Middlebury (downloadables march 2008.doc), and a generic press release put together by OverDrive (Green Mountain Digital Library Consortium.doc). You'll still find our logos, small business cards, and some standard materials from OverDrive in the widget -- OverDrive has a great handout with instructions, too, called "trifold.pdf" Look too for their "Best Practices" handout -- on page 4, there is a great photo showing how one library circulates their mp3 players. I never thought of nestling it in foam!
We'll also be ordering more bookmarks for Consortium members in 2009. Let us know if you'd like some now -- I've still got one box!
05 December 2008
As we prepare to join ListenUp, we're considering whether or not to have portable players available for loan. Anybody else do this? If so, what kind do you have, and do you require a damage deposit? It would seem to make sense to buy players that can handle both WMA and mp3 files, and from my limited research the biggest names are the various models of Creative Zen and SanDisk players. Even if you don't offer loaners, I'd be glad to hear any feedback (positive or negative) on portable players. I'm cross-eyed from information overload! Thanks!
Mark Skinner Library
P.O. Box 438
Manchester, VT 05254
We bought a Sansa Clip and a Creative Zen Stone. They were each about $30 at the time (some colors are cheaper than others!), both are 1GB. We put them in CD cases with multiple sleeves so they also hold directions and cable. We do not provide earbuds, patron must supply their own. We do not require a damage deposit. It's been nice to have them for several reasons. Some people just want to try them out before they buy one. Some people who have one but are having trouble getting it to work, can try ours out to see if the problem is with their player or not. So far we haven't had any trouble.
Kimball Public Library
We have 4 Creative Zen Stone players and they seem to work fine. Good luck!
Jill Tofferi, Fletcher Memorial Library
I went for inexpensive and bought three SanDisk players from Overstocks.com for about $28 each. I had previously bought an RCA player from Demco which isn't as good and cost more than twice as much. Because they are relatively inexpensive I haven't asked for deposits. So far everyone has treated them very kindly. We are a small library and only a few people have tried borrowing an MP3 player so far. The main problems I see with them: 1) the screen is too small for chapter titles, so time can be wasted trying to locate and start the next chapter (solution is to load all of the chapters at one time so they go on to the player in order); 2) no bookmarks to keep your place (solution is counterintuitive, the way to keep your place is to turn the player off, then it will start right where you stopped, if you use pause you'll lose your place). I'm not going to bother with the particular model name as things change so fast they may not be available anymore anyway.
Oh, one more problem: if you download on one computer, and then try to remove the files on another computer it may not work. You might not be able to see the files at all, making it impossible to erase them. Solution is to reformat the SanDisk player, which removes the files but doesn't affect anything else. Weird.
I have three portable players, donated by my Friends of the Library group. They are all Creative Zen Stone players, which were about $35 at amazon.com. I don't do anything different when people check them out -- they are cheaper than most audio books anyway -- and I figure if they get broken, it's likely the end of that unless the Friends agree to purchase some more. The Creative Zen Stone players are like the iPod shuffles, in that they don't do anything complicated (they have about four buttons), but they also don't have a display screen. I know people have been happy with the next product up (which I forget the name of), which does have a little display screen. It might be worth asking the schools listserv -- I do know many Listen Up! schools have purchased players for student use.
Stowe Free Library
We have 3 Sandisk Sansa clips that we loan out. They are relatively easy to use – nothing fancy –and I think go for about $40 each.We don’t require a deposit. We do have an MP3 borrowing policy that it includes a line about liability in the case of damage, and the policy goes out with the MP3 player. We have an age minimum and we limit borrowing to our own town’s patrons (i.e., no homecard or out of town; also no
Ginger @ Burnham in
03 December 2008
"I have not been a fan of audio books but...last weekend I asked my daughter if she would remove the Overdrive software from her computer so I could do the whole thing on my own, using her account. It worked so well! I selected a book and actually enjoyed listening to it on my MP3 as I walked the dog this week. I can't wait for our library to have Listen Up! now!"
01 December 2008
I have two of them. Surprisingly not too many people have borrowed them. I have a two week lending period, but with the idea that people can renew (even by phone) and if there is no one waiting the can have it longer. It is the only thing I do charge overdue fine for. Again because of lack of demand, this has not been an issue. I definitely require that people provide their own ear buds. I also purchase the cable that allows the MP3 player to be plugged into a car that has an auxiliary cable.
Starksboro Public Library
The Dorset Library bought 6 Creative Stone Zen 2GB players and have them in zip lock bags with barcodes, earphones, etc. People are free to use their own earbuds. They may be borrowed for a 3 week period. No charge, no deposit.
We have two that we lend out (also without earbuds). At Stephanie Chase's suggestion, we put them in CD cases: player in one sleeve, directions in another sleeve. They are barcoded and have a catalog record, so they can be reserved. We lend them for 3 weeks.
Kimball Public Library
67 Main St.
Randolph, VT 05060
We have four of them, one RCA and the other three SanDisk. We put them into old videocassette cases with a hunk of foam. We cut out a little hole for the player and included the cable to hook up to the computer. We are still on a manual system, so no barcodes. They go out for two weeks but can be renewed as long as we don't run out of them. If we start running short of meeting demand we'll ask people to bring them back in. So far, not a problem. The worst thing is the lack of bookmarks. I'd love to see an MP3 player designed specifically for audiobooks--these are mainly for music and they don't work all that well.
Hi, We're just getting ready to loan MP3 players. We're barcoding them and adding them to the collection. Check-out will probably coincide with the loan period for Listen Up! Vermont. I don't think we'll ask for a deposit since we have other materials that we loan that cost as much as the players.
from Brown Public Library
We do loan out MP3 players. We have a lending period of one week and patrons are required to provide their own headphones. Our solution to barcoding and storing the players was to put them in individual VHS hard plastic cases. We created artwork that shows a picture of the MP3 player, the barcode number, information on how to use the player, and what each case includes. This helps us to double check it every time one is checked out/in.
Please let me know if you have any more questions.
26 November 2008
1. Connect your device to your PC.
2. Open My Computer.
3. Locate your device in the list of devices.
4. Right click the device and ‘Quick Format’.
5. Click Start.
**Please note, this will clear all data from your device, please back up
anything you wish to save before completing this step.**
6. When the format is complete, click Close.
20 November 2008
Read the press release here:
A great sum-up on the EarlyWord blog, geared towards libraries:
And, finally, download your version here:
This is sooner than we hoped, and, with our mp3 files now available, Listen Up! Vermont can serve our Mac patrons (including me!).
19 November 2008
I offered Sue some more practical advice (after all, it's hard to create a feel good story from numbers):
- This Round, Round Three, is the last open round of sign ups. Following Rounds will have an additional administrative fee.
- I've heard nothing but positive comments from participants -- and I know from my own experience that I am serving patrons I didn't see in the library, and that I am providing them with a service that they can access anytime (and often do -- you can look at the times titles are downloaded).
- This type of service is not even the future of public library service: it is the present. It is what patrons want now -- convenience, accessibility, simplicity.
- It is extremely cost-effective. A library looking to enter into a contract with OverDrive alone is looking at a minimum investment of tens of thousands of dollars. Your annual fee gives you access to a collection and service worth nearly $50,000 -- and worth much more in January, with the new round of signups, when we can purchase many more additional titles. Stowe paid $2000 into the GMLC last year (through a combination of materials budget and grant), and even with the collection at 500 titles, it is as though I increased my audio book collection for only $4 a title. You can't do that anywhere else.
- Imagine an audio collection that takes up no shelf space... requires no repairs... can work with any type of audio player... is available anytime. Pretty nice!
17 November 2008
12 November 2008
I have also had a couple of questions regarding the new mp3 format audio books. Here's the popular one:
"If it says WMA, but not MP3, can it still play on the Zen mp3 players we have been using all along?"
Yes -- the WMA files will play on your Zen/Sansa/Coby/etc players that you've been using up to this point. The mp3 files will play on these players as well. The only hitch is that, in order to transfer an audio book directly to an iPod, the audio book must be in the mp3 format. WMA format audio books will not play on an iPod.
11 November 2008
As the Selection Committee noted back at the very end of September, we have been able to purchase audiobooks in the mp3 format, which is a format compatible with all players, whether it is those little $30 ones you've been circulating or your iPod. Compatibility with Macs is coming, and we hope it will be here by the end of the year.
Check out the collection at
The collection is starting out small, of course, but the Selection Committee is on the job putting together new orders, and the number of participating publishers, and therefore the titles available to purchase, continues to grow. As Kip Roberson mentioned, the selections to date are mainly classics (so don't expect American Wife or the newest James Patterson quite yet).
Take a few minutes to look at the redesigned informational pages on each title. You'll see that the format for the title is listed, as well as several icons that are highlighted to let you know the permissions for that title -- whether it works on an iPod, whether you can burn it to cd, etc. For example, to the left is a screen shot of Anna Karenina. It's available as both an mp3 file (top) and a WMA file (bottom); you need a PC to download it; you can burn either format to cd; the mp3 file is WMA, iPod, and mp3 compatible while the WMA file is only able to be played on WMA compatible devices. Most of your patrons will not have trouble, as the titles available to them will continue to be available -- only now, your iPod users can easily download too!
05 November 2008
03 November 2008
The trainings are conducted using ReadyTalk, which allows you to do training from wherever you have an Internet connection and a phone you can use at the same time... maybe even at home, cup of coffee in hand, in pjs?
24 October 2008
1. Be sure to check off the box on the form that you are participating
2. Be sure to check your circulations and put them in with your other circ stats
3. All of us -- unless you have input all of the MARC records into your system and have given them all local info -- should count our Listen Up! subscription as one database (for example, if you do Listen Up and VOL, list 20, or 21 if you also have access to Heritage Quest).
4. If you are using the MARC records and have all of them in, count the total number of records as audio holdings. If you have only begun the process, count only those MARC records you have imported and edited with local info as audio holdings.
5. Your Listen Up! membership fee should be reported on line 6b, with your other electronic expenditures.
15 October 2008
I will send an email out with the details -- mark your calendars!
03 October 2008
"The selected portable player could not be found. This process will be aborted. Please reconnect your device and try again."
Overdrive has released a new build of the
OverDrive Media Console ‘Transfer Wizard’, which may resolve
this transferring problem. I have added the software update ('TransferWizard.zip)to the Box widget (for MARC records).
1. Save the attached 'TransferWizard.zip' file to your computer and
extract it. The file you want is 'TransferWizard.exe'
2. Go to this folder on your computer:
C:\Program Files\OverDrive Media Console\
3. Rename the current copy of TransferWizard.exe to TransferWizard.old.
4. Copy the new version of the TransferWizard.exe file to this folder.
Once these steps have been completed, try to transfer
a title to their device.
02 October 2008
30 September 2008
If you'd like to see what that might look like, check out the DC Public Library's OverDrive site. Here's a link to their site:
Click on the large "Now Playing OverDrive mp3 Audiobooks" icon to see their list of titles showing the icons that help patrons determine what the file will play on.
I imagine our site will look similar. Stay tuned!
29 September 2008
The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn (unabridged)
Anna Karenina (unabridged)
The Botany of Desire (unabridged)
The Eagle Has Landed (unabridged)
The Fountainhead (unabridged)
The Good Earth (unabridged)
Pearl S. Buck
The House of Mirth (unabridged)
The Jungle (unabridged)
Left Behind (unabridged)
Little Women (unabridged)
Louisa May Alcott
Master and Commander (unabridged)
Moby Dick (unabridged)
My Ántonia (unabridged)
My Man Jeeves (unabridged)
P. G. Wodehouse
The Natural (unabridged)
Peter Pan (unabridged)
J. M. Barrie
Pride and Prejudice (unabridged)
A Room With A View (unabridged)
E. M. Forster
Sense and Sensibility (unabridged)
A Tale of Two Cities (unabridged)
Here's the list of titles that should begin to appear in the collection over the next few weeks:
The Arctic Incident (unabridged)
Being Right Is Not Enough (unabridged)
Belong to Me (unabridged)
Marisa de los Santos
Breaking Dawn (unabridged) -- 2 copies
Cloud Nine (unabridged)
Devil May Care (unabridged)
Domestic Affairs (unabridged)
The Eternity Code (unabridged)
The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society (unabridged)
Mary Ann Shaffer
Off Season (unabridged)
Anne Rivers Siddons
The Opal Deception (unabridged)
Rough Justice (unabridged)
Rules of Deception (unabridged)
Say Goodbye (unabridged)
Voodoo River (unabridged)
When You Are Engulfed in Flames (unabridged)
Also, added to the Always Available titles were "The Screwtape Letters" by C.S. Lewis and "After the Fire" by Robin Gaby Fisher.
We've had a request for Steinbeck's "Of Mice and Men;" unfortunately and surprisingly, that title is not available thru OverDrive at this time.
Enjoy the new books and as always, do not hesitate to suggest titles you think should be in our downloadable collection. Thanks.
Yes, that's great news especially for our members who have been asking for this compatibility since day one. When will this format become available to our user specifically? The answer to that question is a bit complicated to answer but in all likelihood the MP3 format will begin to appear in our collection sometime around the end of the year. OverDrive has to rework each client's web interface to allow for the new format and as well, each client has to purchase new titltes in this format.
What changes will users of the Listen Up! Vermont site notice going forward? The existing collection of titles will remain in their current format with limited device compatibility. Publishers will be making titles available in MP3 format at their discretion which means not every title purchased in the future will be iPod compatible. The mission of the selection committee will be to strike a balance weighing the popularity of the iPod against the popularity of certain titles and their available formats. Rest assured that the selection of titles will lean heavily to the iPod's MP3 format but bestsellers/popular titles will be acquired regardless of format. As the existing collection will remain in the WMA format, the selection committee will need to examine whether or not the popularity of some titles warrant purchase in the MP3 format as well. With limited funds, the emphasis will likely focus on growing the collections with new and popular titles. As always, this service is only as successful as the choices made in the selection of titles meets the needs of the users so please take any and every opportunity to submit purchase suggestions. Thanks!
You can now give your patrons the good news that iPod compatibility is on the horizon. We will post to this blog the moment we have the first MP3 titles in our collection.
25 September 2008
24 September 2008
Click on "Suggest a Title" -- this should open up a panel from your email program and allow you to send an email suggesting your title.
23 September 2008
1. Wish List - We have added a new 'Wish List' feature. When a patron finds a title that s/he is interested in checking out (including titles that have not yet been released), the patron will be able to add the title to the new 'Wish List' with a simple click! Patrons can access their Wish Lists at any time (upon login to their account). From the Wish List, a patron can add an available title to his/her cart and complete the checkout process.
2. The ability to edit the email address used to place a hold - Patrons will be able to edit the email address they entered when placing a title on hold.
3. Displaying 'also recommended titles' - When a patron is viewing a title details page, they will see a new section labeled 'If you like this title, then you might also like...'. The titles chosen for display are those that have Creator(s) and/or Imprint and/or Publisher and/or
Keywords in common with the title on the page the user is viewing.
4. Full text searching - The quick search at your Virtual Branch will be updated to support full text searching. This increases response times, and also allows users to search more metadata fields than before. Full text searching queries the Title, Publisher, Creator, ISBN, Subject, and Publisher-supplied Keyword fields of Content Reserve, as well as some MARC record data (Control Number and Library of Congress subject headings). With full text searching, a user can search on multiple terms, and the search results will be ranked by relevance.
5. Search by awards, and display of awards on title details pages - Currently, you can search Content Reserve by more than 60 awards. Soon, your patrons will be able to search on these awards from your Advanced Search page. Additionally, if a title has received an award, this is displayed on the title details page. The award is shown as a hyperlink; users can simply click this link to view a list of titles that have received the same award. Some notable awards include:
- Newbery Medal
- PEN/Faulkner Award
- Audie Awards
- Best Books for Young Adults
- Edgar Allan Poe Award
- Nebula Award
- Romantic Times Reviewers' Choice Award Winner
- Best Book Quill Award
- Caldecott Medal
18 September 2008
Again, OverDrive emphasized the importance of having your staff familiar with our downloadable audio book collection -- that means not only your library staff, but, if you are in a school, your teachers!
OverDrive also recommends allowing staff and patrons to easily make suggestions for additions to the collection. This is something we've talked about; currently, we do get suggestions through our participating librarians by individual emails, and attempt to purchase the titles we are sent. Would you like to see a link directly from the Listen Up! Vermont web site, accessible to patrons and staff? Let us know in the comments to this post. If folks want it, we'll have OverDrive put it up!
Push the Always Available titles -- our collection of 75 titles has a mix of classics and new titles, all from Blackstone Publishers. These titles would be perfect to recommend to your local book groups.
As with any collection, the one we are familiar with is sure to be among the most popular. Be sure to try out Listen Up! for yourself, and take a look at all of the posts under the label "promotion" for ideas!
17 September 2008
One note: the training covers all of the formats OverDrive offers, including mp3 audio books, video, and eBooks (as well as the traditional audiobooks). Participants should remember that at this time, the Listen Up! Vermont project only offers the WMA audio book files.
16 September 2008
I sent all the faculty information and instructions on how to access Listen Up Vermont, and they were encouraged to share this information with students. Some of them did and actually suggested their students make use of the audios for some of their required readings. That was rather hit or miss with students, though (depending on the teacher) so now as I am heading around to all English classes for GMBA booktalks, I also give them the students the information/instruction sheet for Listen Up Vermont and talk it up some.
The library has five mp3 players that we lend out (they are all out now!), and I have just ordered five more. Some students have their own and use those and do it all from home, but many students rely on using ours. Some students don't have internet access at home - or they are hesitant to try to download the books at home - so we help them do it here or, in some cases, do it for them. The mp3 players are signed out for two weeks.
Some of our English teachers are very excited about this program and are the ones encouraging their students to use it. Pride and Prejudice was a hot item last spring when one of the English teachers suggested students download it so they could listen to their assignements on the way home from track meets! Many of these teachers have bought into the Green Mountain Book Award program also, and they are pleased that their kids can access some of those titles.
I haven't done a formal training. Teachers are pretty protective of their time, and our in-services are already "overfull." Instead I sent out an intoduction and set of instructions to the faculty and then talked to those who seemed most interested. It was important to hit all the English teachers because all students have contact with them. I think I will try to do a voluntary after-school teacher training at some point in the near future for those who want to use the service but are afraid to try it - and we do still have teachers who are intimidated by technology.
I promote the service by talking to teachers, especially the English department, and talking to the students through their English classes. I also put a notice on our daily announcements last spring and let it run for a while, and I will do that again this fall.
I am so happy we got involved with this program. I have used it myself and have been very pleased with the choice of books I have accessed. I am excited about the program and hope it will grow.
15 September 2008
Our trainer pointed out that all staff should have tried to use the downloadable audio book service, culminating in the successful download of a title; that you should know the basic steps, so that you may assist patrons; and that you should be a cheerleader, advocating the service to patrons. Practice does go a long way! Have you downloaded a title and transferred it to a device? You can also try the Quick Start guide or the Guided Tour, available at the top right of the Listen Up! page.
Info on iPods
The WMA files for audio books are half the size of the mp3 files for audio books. This will be important to keep in mind for our patrons, when the mp3 format (which is the iPod compatible format) becomes available -- they may be extremely difficult for some of our patrons on dial up to download. When we can choose, the titles will come from 12 publishers, and approximately 3,000 titles will be available to purchase from (as opposed to the over 20,000 available in the WMA format). Also, at this time, patrons still need to use the OverDrive Media Console to facilitate downloading, and that is only Windows-compatible. That means patrons with iPods will still need to have access to a PC to download a title -- they cannot use a Mac. OverDrive hopes that the Mac-compatible version will be available by the end of the year.
The most prevalent trouble patrons have is having incompatible, missing, or corrupted digital rights management (DRM) licenses. Many times, these can be resolved by going to Tools > Windows Media Player Security Upgrade, which updates your DRM licenses.
If a patron has trouble downloading a part of an audio book, the patron should:
- delete the problem part from \My Documents\My Media
- clear the cache of temporary files
- try re-downloading the part from the OverDrive Media Console
- contact support at email@example.com
- if it is whenever a patron tries to download, as opposed to one part of one file, they may want to reinstall the OverDrive Media Console
OverDrive partner libraries suggest scheduling a how-to workshop on using OverDrive/Listen Up! Vermont for patrons when you have another program scheduled, when you have a guaranteed audience.
They also suggest holding it always at the same time -- every Tuesday afternoon, for example. Even if someone doesn't come every week, we all know the power of regularly scheduled programs.
Or, how about having a table/booth at an area fair or town event showcasing the service? Many of us do this well at Town Meeting! Or, maybe a Digital Book Club -- a great way to use our Maximum Access titles.
I will also be attending the Community Outreach session later in the month, and will share the ideas I hear there.
Have you attended an Open Training Month session? Let us know what you learned in the comments.
08 September 2008
Holly: Like [Middlebury], we too have a logo on our front page that is a direct link to the site. We also have a "How to" link on the front page. Feel free to copy it! [The link is: http://www.drml.org/]
We have a column in our local paper and mention the site often. We also put it in our print newsletter and e-letter frequently. At the circ desk we have those business size cards that came to us as a template. We print them out on just regular copy paper so they are cheaper.
Staff is very good at mentioning it to people who are checking out audios. When we first started offering the service we did a step by step how to session using our LCD projector and my MP3 player.
Our community has a large commuter base and they love to try new things. I still get asked about Ipods on a weekly basis and I think we will see even more circ once we can offer service to Apple users!
Marti: The only things I would add to David's list is we give the brochure on how to begin (provided by Overdrive) to every new patron and always talk it up, especially when someone can't find the audio title they want. [Note: you can find the handout Marti mentions, along with many other promotional tools, in the Box.net widget in the following blog post: http://vtaudiobooks.blogspot.com/2008/03/promotional-materials-and-more.html]
Do you have suggestions to share? Why not post them in the comments below?
05 September 2008
- Collection Checklist: 10 Steps to a Successful Download Collection
- Digital Library 101: Browse, Check Out, and Download!
- Patron Support: Become an OverDrive Download Library Specialist
- Community Outreach: Introduce New Patrons to Download Media
- Real-Time Reports: Size-up Success... and Stay on Track
Our participants will likely find the Digital Library 101, Patron Support, Community Outreach, and Real-Time Reports classes to be the most useful -- have your staff or teachers take Digital Library 101 to grasp the basics, and brush up on your skills with the other three. The press release also has the following mysterious line: "Plus, don't miss what's new for your download library!" Maybe an intro to mp3 files?
The best news? We can win a prize -- content credit! -- for participation. The winner in each category will be selected based on number of courses attended and percentage of staff participating. Let's try for that Consortia prize!
That means sign up! You can do so here:
08 September 08 note: Thanks to Marsha Middleton for letting me know that many of the courses, and their sessions, are waiting list only. I'll find out how the waiting list works; unfortunately, Digital Library 101 is the only course I didn't sign up for! If you're interested in one of the other sessions, let me know, as I am participating. Stephanie
04 September 2008
Here are some of the things we have done at Kellogg-Hubbard:
- We added Listen Up! to our brochure entitled, "Tap the Hidden Web" – an overview of online resources through our website.
- We put it in our monthly newsletter every month.
- The link is at the top of our website.
- We send out reminders in our e-newsletter most months.
- We post periodic reminders in the columns I write for several local newspapers.
When iPods can be used we’ ll do a big advertising blitz. That' s what everyone around here has been waiting for!
03 September 2008
We are very happy that a core of librarians led by Stephanie Chase of Stowe organized the Green Mountain Library Consortium to provide downloadable audiobooks to participating libraries. Without their help, we would not have been able to offer this to our library members.
Stephanie tells me that we have lent more titles than any other library in the consortium (333 titles downloaded from March through August 2008). How did we do it? Who knows? We, for sure, don’t!
Here is what we have done:
- we put a large downloadable audiobook logo on the front page of our website
- 8 by 11 inch posters are around the library
- we ran a couple of newspaper articles
- we mention it frequently in our monthly newsletter and in our occasional e-newsletter
- we host help sessions (usually only 1 person shows up but the word is out...)
- audiobooks can be downloaded on a small table near the adult circulation desk. Computer speakers draw attention to this service.
- we loan 3 small MP3 players for 3 weeks at a time to encourage folks to try the service
- it doesn’t hurt that we have Chris Kirby to help folks get started. Chris serves as the tech answer guy for the consortium and he’s usually available by phone or email.
- Middlebury has a youngish population who seem willing to try something new
We can’t say that any one thing we’ve done has been determinative. But taken together, small steps enable our members to know that we have this service and make it easy for them to try it.
By the way, several months ago Chris put headphones at every computer and I’m amazed how often folks watch movies/YouTube/etc.. It’s also gotten a little more quiet!
06 August 2008
With our Round Two libraries now up and running, our library count is up to 98! 60 public libraries, 32 schools, and 6 community libraries participate, serving over half the state's population.
05 August 2008
All of us could use a reminder on how to make Listen Up! Vermont a success with our patrons. Have you:
- Checked out the promotional materials on the blog?
- Put a link to Listen Up! Vermont on your home page? You can do as the libraries in Rutland, Middlebury, Hinesburg, and others have done, placing a link with a Listen Up! Vermont logo or an OverDrive logo or image on your home page, or go the route of Stowe or Montpelier and put a link in your page menus. OverDrive says that statistics prove this is the best way to get your patrons to the collection.
- Downloaded MARC records into your catalog? If you are automated, free MARC records for all of the titles we own to this point are available in the little Box widget on the left hand side of the blog. As we purchase titles, new MARC files are put into the blog widget. You’ve got about 400 to add, so get crackin’!
These MARC records are handy, as they allow you and your patrons to see if you have access to a downloadable version of the title when they are searching your catalog. A search on The Scarlet Letter could return the book, a movie, a book on cassette, and a downloadable version. The MARC record also has a link in the record to take a patron to the Listen Up! Vermont web site and download it, if available.
Be sure you set these MARC records in your own system to non-circulating, so that your patrons don’t try to place holds on them, etc, and that you give them a call number that is easy for your staff – for example, I used DLA Hawthorne as the call number for The Scarlet Letter.
- Written a press release or update to your local paper? The collection has circulated over 4,200 titles, to date -- so it is likely we'll hit 5,000 before the end of the month. Not bad for just over 4 months of use! Tell a success story from a patron, or have a patron write an article about using the service.
- Told your teachers and staff about it? All libraries, school or public, should be sure their staff feels comfortable using the service. We've just completed a round of Digital Library 101 trainings, but anyone can sign up for trainings as part of the Open Training Month in September (in fact, the more folks from the GMLC who sign up, the better -- we could win a prize! Have you signed up? Do! See the original blog post for more information).
For schools, a Listen Up! Vermont demo could be the perfect thing during those introductory in-service days. Certainly, staff can use the collection personally, but they might also be surprised at the variety of titles for grades K to 12 that they can use in their classes or point their students toward. Special Education teachers can use the titles in place of the traditional books on tape or books on cd. And, of course, your students can access the collection individually, too!
Here’s a blog post with info on the postage and a Box widget with the promotional materials:
04 August 2008
Once our Round Two libraries are set, your library name will appear on the Listen Up! Vermont site, rather than the development site; your patrons will be able to begin downloading. For Round Two, we're welcoming:
- Baldwin Memorial Library, Wells River
- Cabot School
- Champlain Valley Union High School, Hinesburg
- Craftsbury Academy
- Dover Free Library
- Essex High School
- Fairfax Community Library (public patrons only)
- Main Street School, Montpelier
- Milton Jr/Sr High School
- Milton Public Library
- Rockingham Free Public Library
- Waterford School Library
- Westford Public Library
- Williamstown Middle/High School
- Winooski Public Library
- Woodbury Community Library
28 July 2008
|Queste||Angie Sage, Gerard Doyle|
|The Voyage of the Dawn Treader||C. S. Lewis, Derek Jacobi|
|The Silver Chair||C. S. Lewis, Jeremy Northam|
|The Magician's Nephew||C. S. Lewis, Kenneth Branagh|
|Prince Caspian||C. S. Lewis, Lynn Redgrave|
|The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe||C. S. Lewis, Michael York|
|The Hidden Staircase||Carolyn Keene, Laura Linney|
|The Secret at Shadow Ranch||Carolyn Keene, Laura Linney|
|The Secret of the Old Clock||Carolyn Keene, Laura Linney|
|The Night Before Christmas||Clement Clarke Moore, Anthony Edwards|
|The Dragon Rider||Cornelia Funke, Brendan Fraser|
|Ghosthunters and the Incredibly Revolting Ghost||Cornelia Funke, John Beach|
|Inkheart||Cornelia Funke, Lynn Redgrave|
|The Pilgrims of Rayne||D. J. MacHale, William Dufris|
|Raven Rise||D. J. MacHale, William Dufris|
|Peter and the Shadow Thieves||Dave Barry, Jim Dale, Ridley Pearson|
|Peter and the Starcatchers||Dave Barry, Jim Dale, Ridley Pearson|
|Diary of A Worm||Doreen Cronin, Alexander Gould|
|The Time Paradox||Eoin Colfer, Enn Reitel|
|The Lost Colony||Eoin Colfer, Nathaniel Parker|
|The Quest Begins||Erin Hunter|
|Sunset||Erin Hunter, Nanette Savard|
|Twilight||Erin Hunter, Nanette Savard|
|The House on the Cliff||Franklin W. Dixon, Bill Irwin|
|The Missing Chums||Franklin W. Dixon, Bill Irwin|
|Curious George Rides a Bike||H.A. Rey, Bruce Johnson|
|The Ugly Duckling||Hans Christian Andersen, Lynn Whitfield|
|Red Riding Hood||James Marshall, Donal Donnelly|
|The Three Little Pigs||James Marshall, Fritz Weaver|
|Goldilocks and the Three Bears||James Marshall, Joyce Ebert|
|Keeping Score||Linda Sue Park, Julie Pearl|
|Goodnight Moon||Margaret Wise Brown, Buffy Allen|
|The Magician||Michael Scott, Eric Singer|
|The Three Billy Goats Gruff||P. C. Asbjornsen, J. E. Moe, Rex Robbins|
|Dealing With Dragons||Patricia C. Wrede, Full Cast|
|Searching for Dragons||Patricia C. Wrede, Words Take Wing Repertory Co|
|Calling on Dragons||Patricia Wrede, Words Take Wing Repertory Company|
|Talking to Dragons||Patricia Wrede, Words Take Wing Repertory Company|
|Amelia Bedelia Audio Collection||Peggy Parish, Suzanne Toren|
|Officer Buckle & Gloria||Peggy Rathman, John Lithgow|
|Johnny Appleseed||Reeve Lindbergh, Mary McDonnell|
|The Sea of Monsters||Rick Riordan, Jesse Berns|
|The Battle of the Labyrinth||Rick Riordan, Jesse Bernstein|
|The Titan's Curse||Rick Riordan, Jesse Bernstein|
|The Lightning Thief||Rick Riordan, Jesse Berstein|
|This is The House That Jack Built||Simms Taback, Mandy Patinkin|
|Danny and the Dinosaur||Syd Hoff, Ruis Woertendyke|
|The Lost Years of Merlin||T.A. Barron, Michael Cumpsty|
|Mike Mulligan and His Steam Shovel||Virginia Lee Burton, Rod Ross|
|Doctor De Soto||William Steig, Ian Thomson|
You'll find picture books -- great for making your own readalong sets -- classics, such as the Narnia series and some titles from the Hardy Boys and Nancy Drew, and some new titles by Erin Hunter and Rick Riordan. Thank you for the generous gift, and point your patrons and students towards these new titles!
24 July 2008
We have two openings coming up for public librarians on the Listen Up! Vermont selection committee. Members of the committee are responsible for purchasing all of the titles for the Listen Up! collection, balancing the needs from schools and publics, children and adults, classics and new releases.
The committee tends to do all of its work by email, with the exception of very rare meetings to make large purchases — for example, our opening collection, and perhaps our opening mp3 collection. Feel free to contact Stephanie Chase at schase[at]stowelibrary.org if you would like to speak with a current committee member concerning the commitment.
If interested, please send a letter of interest (by email is fine) to Stephanie Chase, Stowe Free Library, PO Box 1029, Stowe, 05672 by Friday, August 15th. Please let us know why you are interested in serving, as well as your experience with Collection Development. To view the Selection Policy for the Green Mountain Library Consortium, please visit http://gmlc.wordpress.com/about/policies-selection/.
18 July 2008
And don't forget about those Digital Library 101 trainings, starting up next week!
09 July 2008
We're told that our ability to purchase, and therefore make available to patrons, mp3 files is "coming soon." Rest assured that as soon as we are able to purchase titles in this format, the GMLC will be! From the looks of the courses offered in OverDrive's Open Training Month in September, my guess is that we might have access around then.
Speaking of the Open Training Month, have you signed up? I have! Let's aim for winning that Consortia prize!
08 July 2008
Here's the announcement from OverDrive:
Our expert trainers will provide an educational and fun program designed to increase staff knowledge and maximize circulation of your OverDrive download library. The curriculum includes 5 courses, covering each area of your download service: Collection Development, User Experience, Patron Support, Promotion, and Reports. Plus, don't miss what's new for your download library!
1. Collection Checklist: 10 Steps to a Successful Download Collection
2. Digital Library 101: Browse, Check Out, and Download!
3. Patron Support: Become an OverDrive Download Library Specialist
4. Community Outreach: Introduce New Patrons to Download Media
5. Real-Time Reports: Size-up Success . and Stay on Track
Training sessions will be offered four days a week throughout September with open enrollment and a contest for participating libraries.
More than 2,000 librarians participated in Training Month 2007, and four libraries were the lucky winners of OverDrive's Training Month award packages. Don't miss out in 2008!
To register for OverDrive's Open Training Month for library staff, go to:
We look forward to meeting with you in September!
OverDrive's Training Team
07 July 2008
All of our Listen Up! Vermont participants -- whether you started in January or now in July -- are able to access our second round of Digital Library 101 trainings. Here are the dates, followed by the participant codes:
Monday, July 21st at 3pm - 5736006
Tuesday, July 22nd at 10am - 5736006
Wednesday, July 30th at 10am - 7301070
Thursday, July 31st at 3pm - 7301070As in the past, the trainings can be done anywhere that you can be online and on the phone at the same time. This is a FABULOUS training, covering all the basics, and it lasts about 90 minutes. Please contact Stephanie if you need help accessing the trainings. An email will be sent to all with the access information.
This is a great opportunity for you to learn about the Listen Up! Vermont service, have new volunteers, staff, or teachers get caught up, or have a brush-up yourself.
03 July 2008
- Cabot School
- Fairfax Community Library (public library patrons only)
- Johnson Public Library
- Main Street Middle School, Montpelier
|Cry, the Beloved Country||Alan Paton, Michael York|
|The Rest Is Noise||Alex Ross, Grover Gardner|
|The Smell of the Night||Andrea Camilleri, Grover Gardner|
|The Alien Within||Ben Bova, Stefan Rudnicki|
|Star Brothers||Ben Bova, Stefan Rudnicki|
|Voyagers||Ben Bova, Stefan Rudnicki|
|David Copperfield||Charles Dickens, Frederick Davidson|
|Oliver Twist||Charles Dickens, Nadia May|
|Bleak House||Charles Dickens, Robert Whitfield|
|Crime and Punishment||Fyodor Dostoevsky, Anthony Heald|
|Comfort Food||Kate Jacobs, Barbara Rosenblat|
|The Capture||Kathryn Lasky, Pamela Garelick|
|The Journey||Kathryn Lasky, Pamela Garelick|
|The Rescue||Kathryn Lasky, Pamela Garelick|
|The Siege||Kathryn Lasky, Pamela Garelick|
|All the Sad Young Literary Men||Keith Gessen, Scott Brick|
|Armageddon in Retrospect||Kurt Vonnegut, Rip Torn|
|Madness||Marya Hornbacher, Tavia Gilbert|
|Enchantment||Orson Scott Card, Stefan Rudnicki|
|Lost Boys||Orson Scott Card, Stefan Rudnicki|
|Seventh Son||Orson Scott Card, various readers|
|The Picture of Dorian Gray||Oscar Wilde, Simon Vance|
|The Cat Who Walks through Walls||Robert Heinlein, Tom Weiner|
|What Happened||Scott McClellan, Scott McClellan|
|Europe Central||William T. Vollmann, Ralph Cosham|
02 July 2008
OverDrive - Recurring Monthly Maintenance Window
In a continuous effort to provide our partners with a robust and secure server platform, OverDrive is establishing a monthly maintenance window to allow for systems maintenance should it be needed. This maintenance window will be scheduled for the third Thursday of every month, from 6:00 am - 8:00 am (Eastern Time).
All OverDrive sites, including Content Reserve and your OverDrive-hosted website, may be down for all or part of these regular maintenance windows. It is also possible that your website will not be affected during some maintenance windows. Please be assured that if your library site is affected, we will make every effort to display informative messaging to patrons that visit your site during any outage.
The first maintenance window is scheduled for Thursday, July 17 from 6:00 am - 8:00 am EDT.
26 June 2008
25 June 2008
1916 by Morgan Llywelyn
Careless in red by Elizabeth George
Fearless Fourteen by Janet Evanovich
Harvesting the heart by Jodi Picoult
Skeletons at the Feast by Chris Bohjalian