The Writer’s Voice

If you’re an avid reader of fiction and live in a large city, you may be lucky enough to get to the odd literary reading. Hearing a novelist or poet read their own work is usually a very gratifying experience, but it also an experience that most people don’t get the chance to have. Distance, cost, availability: they all make hearing a writer read his or her own work a rare treat.

A writer in the U.S. is solving the problem with a website that offers digital recordings of authors reading from their own works. The idea for The Writer’s Voice started after author William Thompson published his first novel in 1995 and wanted to publicize it on a limited budget.

The goal of The Writer’s Voice is to help writers in a wide variety of styles and genres put themselves in front of a bigger audience by creating a virtual bookstore reading. The Net can serve as a single place where an author’s reading can be heard by thousands and thousands of people, instead of fifty or a hundred on any given night.

Using the standard RealAudio plug-in (available free at readers can hear new (and some established) writers reafrom their own work. The artists’ voices are unedited and the selected stories and novel segments are chosen entirely by them. You may not be able to get an autographed copy, but it’s the next best thing to being there.