Hosting an author event? Libro.fm can easily turn your in-person events into audiobooks for free.
Producing exclusive content draws in new audiobook listeners and provides current Libro.fm members with content they won’t be able to get anywhere else.
Listen to one of the free author events on our site and imagine what’s possible for your store.
Choose an author event that will be worth the effort to record. Not every event is a good fit for recording, so consider aiming for 2-4 recordings per year to keep the content bar high.
Get permission from the author and/or publisher. While an email agreement is sufficient for Libro.fm, you are welcome to use this release form.
Start with a “sound” plan…
Turning a live author event into a quality recorded podcast requires planning before the event starts. Things to consider include the recording engineer, the equipment you’ll be using, and the event room environment.
Questions to consider
- How many speakers need to be miked (author, interviewer, etc.)?
- How will questions from the audience be miked?
- Placement and types of mikes needed (Lavs wired or wireless, handheld)?
- How many audio tracks needed?
- Will the recorded audio be sent to a PA system, or will the PA system feed the “mix” to a recorder?
- Will the recording be made with a separate stand-alone system?
A freelance recording engineer may be able to provide these services for you. Another alternative would be to hire a local student or musician who has their own recording gear and is eager to get experience at bookstore-friendly rates. Or, if these events are a regular part of your bookstore schedule, it might be worth investing in a simple recording setup and training your staff to record the events.
Contact Carl Pearson at Creative Productions. Carl is available to walk you through the process by phone, get you a discount on equipment, and possibly turnkey the post production. Email Carl at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 206-730-2464.
Here are a few good options for recording equipment:
The Tascam DR-10L
(with a lavalier mike)
Small enough to clip on the author with a lav mike.
MSRP $249 / Street Price $199.99
The Tascam DR-05X
A stereo recorder with built-in mikes—or add a mike to the ⅛” Stereo Mini Jack.
MSRP $199 / Street Price $119.99
The Tascam DR-05X
This four-track audio recorder is a great solution for recording an interviewer, author with lavs, audience questions, and audience reactions with built-in mikes all at the same time. Features two professional XLR mike inputs for your lav or handheld mikes.
MSRP $299 / Street Price $199.99
The live event…
Set up, test all the equipment, and check recording levels well in advance of the start time. Monitor the recording with headphones during the event. Listen carefully for hums, busses, and static if using a feed from the PA system, as well as mike handling noise. Breath blasts on “P’s” and “B’s” mean the mike is too close or needs a windscreen. If using wireless mikes, use fresh batteries and make sure the signals are good. Record in a high quality WAV format.
Recording the intros and outros
We recommend recording your own message at the start and end of the event.
Sample intro script:
Welcome to this author event from [bookstore name], produced in partnership with Libro.fm. [bookstore name] is an independent bookstore that, beyond selling books, hosts many community-focused author events. If you are ever in the area, join us! We hope you enjoy listening to this live author event with [author name, author of book name, in conversation with host] .
Sample ending script:
Thanks for listening to this live author event from [bookstore name] and our partners at Libro.fm. Libro.fm provides over 150,000 audiobooks through partnerships with independent bookstores. The best way to support your local indie bookstore—and the community they serve—is as simple as buying a book or audiobook.
Now is the time to “fix it in post” which will allow you to edit out unneeded comments and get a consistent audio level throughout the podcast. Edit out comments like “here is the signing table, and there are cookies in the back,” and so on. Delete any lengthy pauses and gaps to keep it moving at a good pace. If an audience member asking a question did not speak into the mike, the question will likely need to be deleted. Consider adding standard “opening” and “closing” credits to your podcast that can be recorded after the event.
After the editing of the WAV format is completed, the project can be exported to an MP3 format at 192 kbps at a Constant Bit Rate for distribution.
If you don’t have a way to edit your own recording, contact Carl at Creative Productions. For a limited time, Libro.fm is willing to pay for the post production work to help get you started.
- Upload the files to Google Drive or DropBox and share with Carl Pearson at email@example.com
- Email the following to firstname.lastname@example.org and email@example.com:
- Title of event
- Description (see author events for examples)
- Allow a 1-2 week turnaround time on our end.
- Promote! Once the event is live, share it with the author, publisher, and your customers.
We look forward to working with you on your next author event.