Audio Archives

Kelly Writer’s House Recordings, Media Links Archive

Person Describing Archive

Celyn Harding Jones (2010); Chelsea Obodoechina (2020)

Is this primarily a poetry audio site?


Sponsoring Person or Institution

The Kelly Writer's House, Penn State University

Site URL

Site Last Updated
Date Visited


General Description of Archive

Archive of podcasts, poetry readings, lectures, discussions with writers. 2359 audio files available to search, from 1998 to the present. All events that occur at The Kelly Writer's House are recorded and uploaded to the site.

UPDATE (Chelsea Obodoechina): Site has not been updated since September 18, 2017.

Description of archive history or URL

All events and readings done at the Kelly Writer's House since 1998 have been recorded and uploaded to this site. Unclear how this archive started, but most likely it involved Al Filreis.

Contact information

Al Filreis, The Writer's House Planning Committee, Penn State University

Searchable options

By Author's last name.

Relation from the audio to the text

No transcriptions or text available.

Date/Time/Length/Context info about the audio items

All recordings are listed by Author, Description, Date, Length, an "Info" link, and a "Media" link.

Author bios and context within literary history

The "Info" link sometimes provides relevant information such as: short author bio, information about the event on a calendar that describes the occasion for the recording. It will also connect to author blogs/websites or the PennSound website (where the recording is also listed). However, not all of the items are connected to author information, some simply provide the occasion or schedule of readers.

Audio file type: streaming, download, file format, audio file compression quality (WAV, MP3, bitrate)

mp3, QuickTime movie, RealVideo, RealAudio: all streaming; except RealVideos download.

Multimedia integration (pictures, video, etc.)

The only integration of pictures is found through the link to "Info", where one or two photos of the event or reading are shown. Videos are only available when the media type is a video.

Audio playback setup (opens in Flash player, on new blank screen, etc.)

Most of the mp3 files open on a new blank screen, the QuickTime videos link to a Penn Arts&Sciences "Media Manager" website (interesting fact: this site gives viewers the option to embed this video on your own site).

Mobile access (i.e. accessible on smart phones, tablets, etc.)

UPDATE (Chelsea Obodoechina): Mobile access is possible, but the website does not cater to mobile devices. Functionality may vary depending on the device.


Browsing is great if you are sure of what you are looking for, like an Author's name. The viewer is confronted with a literal wall of recordings, while more information is available (length, description, info) than most sites, the viewer can't search by content or type of recording/video. There are a list of similar website links that will bring the viewer to similar sites: PennSound, an archive of Podcasts, and KWH-TV (Kelly Writer's House TV station).

Discovery features (pre-made playlists; dynamic lists: lists of recent additions, featured items, related items, etc).
Interactivity and Web 2.0 features

There is not much interactivity on the site, above and beyond listening and following links; however some of the readings feature interactive events: John Ashberry answers questions from listeners via the website.

Other notes

Copyright policy at bottom of the site is as follows: "These audio and video recordings are being made available for noncommercial and educational use only. All rights to this recorded material belong to the author or the author's estate. See specific files for copyright information. Used by permission."