Spirit of Texas Reading Program

Welcome to the committee!

Our Charge

The Spirit of Texas Reading Program will highlight six (6) Texas authors yearly. The middle school committee will highlight authors who write for 6th-8th graders while the high school committee highlights authors who write for 9th-12th graders.

The Spirit of Texas Reading Program is intended for recreational reading, not to support a specific curriculum.

After we pick our authors, pairs of committee members will work on programming that we will share with the librarians of Texas. Check out some of our programs at http://www.txla.org/groups/SpiritofTXMiddleSchool (middle school) and http://www.txla.org/groups/SpiritofTXHighSchool (high school).


Texas authors are authors who currently live in Texas, who have lived in Texas or who write about Texas.

Authors must have a book for the age range (Grades 6-8 for middle school; Grades 9-12 for high school) published in the last five years. The book must be positively reviewed in a scholarly journal for the age range.

Things to Think About When Looking at Authors/Books

  • We are looking for books for which we can create interesting and useful programming for public and school libraries. These are not necessarily the "best" books.
  • It's important to include a range of genres (including non-fiction) and interest levels.
  • Look for authors from various ethnic backgrounds.
  • Keep track of books you have read and ideas for programming. This will be useful when we meet to make our final decisions.

Our Wiki

The majority of communication for the committee is done through a wiki.

The middle school wiki is located at http://msspot.pbworks.com .

The high school wiki is located at http://spothighschool.wikispaces.com/ .

The committee chair will issue an invitation to the wiki to each member. Nominations, discussions, and other information are shared through the wiki. Each author is assigned a folder and all program related files should be shared here.


After the authors have been selected, pairs of committee members will be assigned to create the programming for an author. Each pair is responsible for staying in contact with either the author or the author's publisher (after the chair makes the initial contact).

Programming will include the following:

  • Active program - Requires active involvement from librarian and teens; may have several sections or take place over many sessions
  • Passive program -a program that can be set-up and teens can walk up to and participate at their leisure
  • School program (including TEKS)
  • A read-alike list
  • A short biography of the author
  • Links to the author's web presence - webpage, facebook, Twitter, Tumblr, blog, etc
  • Welcome video from the author
  • Flyers, Pictures, Posters, Advertisements, etc
  • Annotated Bibliography of Resources
  • Booktrailer for the highlighted book
  • 10 question reading quiz for the highlighted book (middle school) or Book Club Discussion Questions (high school)

Also, to highlight the program on the YART social media, each group should submit 5-10 quotes from their assigned author/book. It would be great if any other news about the author and/or the book were shared as well.

Committee Obligations

Committee Policies and Procedures are available at http://www.txla.org/groups/SpiritofTXMiddleSchool (middle school) and http://www.txla.org/groups/SpiritofTXHighSchool (high school). Click on the "Committee Members" tab.

  • All committee members must be a member of TLA and YART.
  • Members will read books from eligible authors and nominate appropriately.
  • Pairs of members will write and edit programs for one selected author.
  • Members are expected to participate in all discussions. Some will be through email and some through the wiki.
  • Members will provide feedback on other members' programming.
  • Members are required to attend the voting meeting November and expected to attend the meetings at the TLA Annual Conference in April and the TLA Annual Assembly in July.