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More Than 100 Original Video Interviews Now Available Online at The WETA Book Studio

Public Broadcaster Notes Milestone for Web Project


Washington, D.C. — WETA today announced that www.thebookstudio.com, a website dedicated to stimulating interviews with todays foremost authors, now features more than 100 original video interviews and book reviews along with integrated social media features. The WETA Book Studio, an online production of WETA, the flagship public broadcasting station in the nations capital, provides an opportunity to discover new literary gems.

Newly added today is a video featuring Maureen Corrigan (NPR), Ron Charles (The Washington Post), and author Louis Bayard in a lively review of 2009s best books.

At a time when media coverage of literature has been reduced, The WETA Book Studio provides the public with resources that showcase the excitement of the written word, commented Sharon Percy Rockefeller, president and CEO of WETA.

The fast-growing online production offers fresh interviews each week produced in WETAs television and radio studios. Authors interviewed include Julie Andrews, Richard Russo, Buzz Aldrin, Michael Connelly, Jeannette Walls, Helen Thomas, Simon Schama, Karin Slaughter, Michael Pollan, and many others.

In December and January, the site will post video and audio interviews with Jeff Shaara, Tracy Chevalier, Chris Bohjalian, David Baldacci, and Mary Gordon.

The WETA Book Studio shows how powerful new media can be for books and reading, says Bethanne Patrick, the sites managing editor and a member of the National Book Critics Circle whose reviews have appeared in The Washington Post Book World, People magazine, and Publishers Weekly. Patrick has been blogging since 2004 as The Book Maven and is active under that name on Twitter and other social media platforms.

The online community that surrounds The WETA Book Studio participates in regular book giveaways; contributes to FridayReads (what I’m reading now shout-outs with hundreds of participants); and takes part in online book discussions. The site also lists author events in the Washington area and provides succinct Read This, Not That book reviews.

The connection between books and public broadcasting has always run deep – from television adaptations of great works and mysteries by authors such as Jane Austen and Agatha Christie airing on MASTERPIECE, to bestsellers written by public broadcasting personalities such as Gwen Ifill, moderator and managing editor of Washington Week with Gwen Ifill and National Journal and senior correspondent for PBS NewsHour. The WETA Book Studio enhances this relationship by spotlighting works that appeal to public broadcasting viewers.  For the upcoming American Masters premiere of Louisa May Alcott: The Woman Behind Little Women – scheduled to air December 28 at 9:00 p.m. on WETA TV 26 and PBS stations nationwide – the site will offer a PBS+Books feature tied to the iconic authors writings.

To propose authors for The WETA Book Studio to interview or books to review, please contact Suzanne Nordfelt at info@thebookstudio.com.

The WETA Book Studio is an online production of WETA, the third-largest producing station in the public television system and the flagship public broadcaster in the nations capital. WETA Television and Classical WETA 90.9 FM are public broadcasting stations serving the District of Columbia, Maryland and Virginia with high-quality programming. Classical WETA 90.9 FM brings classical music, concerts and specials to Greater Washington. As the leading PBS station in the nations capital, WETA Television broadcasts on four channels: WETA TV 26, WETA HD, WETA Kids and WETA Create. WETA productions and co-productions include PBS NewsHour, Washington Week with Gwen Ifill and National Journal, and Ken Burnss The National Parks: Americas Best Idea. Additional WETA online projects include www.ReadingRockets.org, a national multimedia project from WETA that looks at how young children learn to read, why so many struggle, and what we can do to help them and www.AdLit.org, a national multimedia project offering information and resources to parents and educators of struggling adolescent readers and writers. WETAs headquarters is located in Arlington, Virginia. For more information on WETA and its services, visit www.weta.org.

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