Wednesday, March 01, 2006

Children's author supports books for the blind

Last November I reported that the RNIB was urging authors to encourage their publishers to make their books more widely available to visually impaired readers. Today the BBC reports that Children's Laureate Jacqueline Wilson is leading the initiative by the Royal National Institute of the Blind to make more books available in Braille, audio and large print formats. The RNIB says publishers should produce work in alternative formats at the same time as standard print versions come out, rather than making visually impaired readers wait weeks or months for the latest book by their favourite authors.

The RNIB is urging authors to amend their contracts to make this possible and Wilson is the first author to ask her publishers to make her work more widely available. "Reading means all the world to me and I can't imagine what it would be like to be denied this pleasure," she said. "Blind and partially sighted people should enjoy the same rich library of books as everybody else, and that is why I'm supporting the Right to Read Campaign." Wilson says she wants to work together with her fellow writers in order to "get our books out to absolutely everyone who wants to read them".

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