Customer Satisfaction Survey
TBP Poetry Contest
Public Awareness and Outreach
Newly Recorded Books
(RTF), (PDF), (MP3), (BRF)
This year, we have had several staff changes in TBP. Some people have reached retirement after numerous years at TSLAC, some familiar names and faces have been promoted, one left the agency and came back, and we have a few new faces join the TBP team.
Mark Smith, Director and Librarian, retired and Assistant State Librarian Gloria Meraz was appointed as the new Director and Librarian. Four of our longtime staff members — Todd R. and David R. at the TBP Circulation facility and Craig Y. and Tom J. in our TBP Recording Studio retired this fall. Guffie R. was promoted to Operations Supervisor and Jonathan G. was promoted to Library Collections Coordinator at the TBP Circulation facility. Jaclyn Owusu has returned to us as the TBP Public Awareness Coordinator. Finally, we have a few new people in Reader Services: Reader’s Advisory Librarians Kayleigh and Sheila, Reader Consultant Darin, and bilingual Reader Consultant Michael.
We are looking forward to what the future holds with our new TSLAC leadership and with the TBP staff.
As always, please take care and be well.
Sarah Jacobson, Director, Talking Book Program
Thursday and Friday, November 25-26 ~ Thanksgiving
Thursday-Saturday, December 23-26 ~ Winter Holiday
Friday-Saturday, December 31 - January 1 ~ New Year’s
Monday, January 17 ~ Martin Luther King Jr. Day
Of course, you can leave a voicemail message or send email on a holiday.
We will be conducting our customer satisfaction survey this fall. State agencies are required to do these surveys on a regular basis and report the results to the Legislative Budget Board. Our survey is short, and answers are on a scale of one to five, with “1” being “poor” and “5” being “excellent.” We will be sending these surveys through the postal mail, and if we have your email address, we will send the survey electronically. You also will have the option of calling our Reader Services department at 1-800-252-9605 and answering the survey over the phone. We hope that all of you will participate. The more responses we have to the survey, the more accurate the survey will be.
The fifth annual TBP poetry contest is taking place and will run until January 31, 2022. To participate, you must be a current and active TBP patron. Poems will be judged on originality, creativity, and artistic and style quality. Deadline for submissions is January 31, 2022.
Submit poems to: Talking Book Program
Attn: Public Awareness Coordinator
PO Box 12927
Austin, TX 78711-2927
Or e-mail to: TBPinfo@tsl.texas.gov
PLEASE NOTE: By submitting your poem in the TBP Poetry contest, you are giving consent and permission to the Talking Book Program, its employees, successors, agents, and assignees the right to use your poem for any purpose whatsoever, including publications, advertisements, and governmental purposes, in all kinds of media and without compensation as part of the Talking Book Program Poetry Contest. These rights are not exclusive.
Did you know that as a patron of the Talking Book Program, you are eligible to subscribe, free of charge, to popular magazines on digital cartridge, in large print, or in braille? You can choose from about 80 national magazines. Many magazines are also available via digital download from BARD.
Examples of digital magazines for young readers:
JACK AND JILL (JAC4)
CRICKET/NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC KIDS (NGW4)
Examples of braille for young readers:
SCOUT LIFE (SCO1)
Examples of digital cartridge magazines for adults:
AARP - the magazine and AARP BULLETIN (AAP4)
CONSUMER REPORTS (CRP4)
GOOD HOUSEKEEPING (GHK4)
SPORTS ILLUSTRATED (SPI4)
Examples of braille magazines for adults:
HARPER'S MAGAZINE (HRP1)
ROLLING STONE (RST1)
The events of the past year and a half have allowed us to look at new ways to serve our patrons. During this time, we have created a way to give our registered patrons access to download our three Texas-recorded Texas magazines. Patrons now have access to the past two years of Texas Monthly, Texas Parks and Wildlife, and Texas Highways for download via our website at www.tsl.texas.gov/tbp/txmagazines.
You can download the magazines to a flash drive or cartridge to play on your digital talking book machine or an authorized commercial player. At this time, you will not be able to download the files using BARD Express or BARD Mobile app. If you have any questions, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
If you would like to contact Jaclyn about an outreach event in your area or set up a virtual event, send her an email at email@example.com or call 512-463-5452 and ask to speak with Jaclyn.
There have been many questions about the NLS braille e-reader. Here is what we know so far. The pilot testing for the e-readers is continuing. Two devices are being tested, with both having the same features. The Texas library is not involved in the pilot testing. Once the pilot testing concludes in the spring, NLS will use the information gained in the pilot to prepare to begin rolling out the e-reader to patrons. We do not yet have any information on when Texas will have e-readers to send to patrons. Currently there is no waiting list to receive an e-reader. Look for further updates in upcoming issues of this newsletter, either in this column or from the Library Director. We know many patrons are excited about the e-readers, and we look forward to providing them.
We all have our favorite authors or those “go-to” books, but did you know that the Talking Book Program has a recording studio that records and produces several books that are by Texas authors or have a Texas theme? Check out a few of the titles below that are available on BARD.
NEVER THE SAME AGAIN: A ROCK ‘N’ ROLL GOTHIC by Jesse Sublett
The autobiography of famed punk band member and crime novelist Jesse Sublett, covering his first love's tragic murder, his music career, and his struggle with cancer. Adult. Some descriptions of sex. Some violence. Strong language.
NEIGHBOR, HOW LONG HAS IT BEEN? THE STORY OF WOLF CHILI, A TEXAS LEGEND by Wallace Chariton
In 1895, sixteen-year-old Lyman T. Davis appeared on the streets of Corsicana, Texas and began selling his "ranch" chili from the back of a wagon in front of the Blue Front Saloon, marking the start of Wolf Brand Chili. Adult.
TEXAS WOMEN FIRST: LEADING LADIES OF LONE STAR HISTORY by Sherrie McLeRoy
American history is teeming with unconventional, trailblazing Lone Star women with big, unprecedented achievements--outstanding, outrageous outré women who know all about being "Texas Big" and being first. Adult.
BLACK FRONTIERSMAN: THE MEMOIRS OF HENRY O. FLIPPER, FIRST BLACK GRADUATE OF WEST POINT by Henry Ossain Flipper
Flipper was the first black graduate from West Point and served in the Tenth Cavalry in Texas and Oklahoma before being dishonorably discharged in 1882. He went on to be a mining engineer, surveyor, congressional aide, translator, and writer. Black Frontiersman is Flipper's account of his service with the Tenth U.S. Cavalry in Texas and Oklahoma and the years that followed. Adult. Some strong language.
A PROMISE OF HOPE by Amy Clipston
An Amish widow with newborn twins discovers her deceased husband had disturbing secrets. As she tries to come to grips with the past, she considers a loveless marriage to ensure stability for her young family...with her faith in God hanging in the balance. Adult.
STRINGER by Lou Cameron
The twentieth century is brand-new. The Spanish-American War is over and Teddy Roosevelt is President. The frontier may be closing fast, but as far as Stringer MacKail's concerned, the shooting's just begun. For once they were sending Stringer--newsman, gunman, and ladies' man--on an easy assignment. All he had to do was scribble out a story about an outlaw gunned down fifty years before. Stringer saw it as an ideal excuse to make a trip back to his hometown in the Sierras. But it's a homecoming of hot lead and hotter ladies. Adult. Explicit descriptions of sex. Strong language.
ON DEAD MAN’S RANGE by Lou Cameron
Sheriff Commodore Perry Owens just lost his first election in seventeen years. Maybe folks in the Arizona territory were ready for a change...and then again, maybe Stringer ought to go have a look-see. The trouble is, Perry's vanished and everyone who knew him is either dead or vanished too. But when hot lead and hard knuckles start flying, Stringer's belt-buckle deep in ghostly mystery and willing women. And even if the ghosts may be hokum, the women are flesh-and-blood beauties! Adult. Explicit descriptions of sex. Some strong language and violence.
BLYTHEWOOD by Carol Goodman
After a summer locked away in a mental institution, seventeen-year-old Ava Hall is sent to Blythewood, a finishing school for young ladies that is anything but ordinary. Some violence.
FREEDOM COLONIES: INDEPENDENT BLACK TEXANS IN THE TIME OF JIM CROW by Thad Sitton
In the decades following the Civil War, nearly a quarter of African Americans achieved a remarkable victory--they got their own land. While other ex-slaves and many poor whites became trapped in the exploitative sharecropping system, these independence-seeking individuals settled on pockets of unclaimed land that had been deemed too poor for farming and turned them into successful family farms. Adult. Some strong language. Some violence.
ALIENS FOR BREAKFAST by Jonathan Etra
When Richard sits down to breakfast one morning, he gets the surprise of his life--an alien in his cereal bowl! For grades 3-6.
End of Texas Talking Book News