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Honorees 2016

 

A Museum Like None Anywhere, Honors First Lady Laura Bush and Others for their Contributions to Texas Literacy.

 

TEXAS – The Texas Authors Institute of History is a museum dedicated to preserving works of the authors of Texas, related publishers, non-profits and others who support writing and reading in the State of Texas. While they do not have a permanent location, their website currently spotlights over 800 authors from the past 200 years.

Established in 2015, this is the first year in which they will be honoring Texans and non-profits who have contributed above and beyond, to improving the quality of life for residents in Texas through reading and writing programs.

First Lady Laura Bush is being honored with the “Outstanding Citizenship Award for Promoting Literacy“ for her continued dedication and out-reach across Texas and the world in promoting education, with a heavy emphasis on reading and writing. During her tenure as First Lady of Texas, Mrs. Bush helped create the Texas Book Festival which is also an honoree this year.

The Texas Book Festival, has worked hard over the past 21 years, spotlighting reading programs and raising money for libraries across the state. They are awarded the “Outstanding Texas Non-Profit Award for Literacy”. An ever-growing and changing publishing landscape has created new ways for outreach and promotion of authors.

Billy Dawson, is receiving the “Outstanding Social Impact Award“ for his best-selling children’s book, “You Never Know.“ This is a book which addresses the issue of bullying, something this country singer knows about first-hand. He has dedicated his life and music career to helping combat this ever-present and growing issue, as seen in today’s politics and schools. He will be performing at the Lone Star Book Festival’s Squirl Scavenger Book Hunt where he will receive his award.

The Texas Author’s Institute of History’s website is constantly growing and changing as awareness expands of the estimated 8,000 plus Texas authors who currently reside in the state. It is estimated that these authors bring in approximately a quarter of a million dollars to the Texas economy, in addition to their contribution to education through their books, other writings and reading programs.

To learn more about the authors and their programs, as well as other Texas authors, please visit the website at TexasAuthors.Institute. or call them at 512-299-4810.

 

Honorees 2017

 

A Museum Like None Anywhere, Honors Rep. Jason Villalba and Others for their Contributions to Texas Literacy.

 

TEXAS – The Texas Authors Institute of History is a museum dedicated to preserving works of the authors of Texas, related publishers, non-profits and others who support writing and reading in the State of Texas. While they do not yet have a physical location, their website currently spotlights over 800 authors from the past 200 years.

Established in 2015, this is the second year in which they will honor Texans and non-profits who have contributed above and beyond, to improving the quality of life for residents in Texas through reading and writing programs.

Awards will be presented at the Texas Authors Institute of History Reception on October 6, 2017 from 7- 10 PM at Main St. Gardens in downtown Dallas as part of the Lone Star Book Festival event that weekend.

Texas Representative Jason Villalba will receive the “Outstanding Citizenship Award for Promoting Literacy.” His dedication and outreach across Texas and the world in promoting education, with a heavy emphasis on reading and writing, is outstanding.

The Houston Writers Guild, has worked hard over the past 20 years, spotlighting reading and writing programs. They are awarded the “Outstanding Texas Non-Profit Award for Literacy”. An ever-growing and changing publishing landscape has created new ways for outreach and promotion of authors.

Mike Blakely, will receive the “Outstanding Social Impact Award,” for his continued work in both the writing and music worlds. This award-winning author and musician continues to enrich lives of Texans and others with music and books. He will be performing at the Lone Star Book Festival’s Author Reception and fundraiser for Texas Authors Institute of History and Hurricane Harvey Library fund on October 6th at the Main Street Gardens in Dallas.

The Texas Author’s Institute of History’s website is constantly growing and changing as awareness expands to the estimated 8,000 plus Texas authors who currently reside in the state. It is estimated that these authors bring in approximately a quarter of a million dollars to the Texas economy, in addition to their contribution to education through their books, other writings and reading programs.

To learn more about the authors and their programs, as well as other Texas authors, please visit the website at TexasAuthors.Institute. or call them at 512-299-4810.

 

 

The 26 Major Advantages to Reading More Books and Why 3 in 4 People Are Being Shut Out of Success

by Brad Isaac on December 5, 2007

 

 

I read a Associated Press-Ipsos poll revealing that 1 in 4 adults read no books last year. Yes, that’s 25% of the adults out there are reading zero books. This is sad.

 

I knew intuitively the number of books read each year had gone down but to zero? Ridiculous!

 

And what about the adults who are reading more than zero books a year. How many are they reading in all? One? Five? Actually, the same poll reveals the average adult reads only four books per year. Half of those people read less than four.

 

If you are one of the non-book readers who feels you “don’t need no stinking books”, here are 26 great reasons to start the habit…before you are left behind!

 

 

Reading is an active mental process – Unlike TV, books make you to use your brain. By reading, you think more and become smarter.

 

It is a fundamental skill builder - Every good course on the planet has a matching book to go with it. Why? Because books help clarify difficult subjects. Books provide information that goes deeper than just classroom discussion.

 

Improves your vocabulary – Remember in elementary school when you learned how to infer the meaning of one word by reading the context of the other words in the sentence? You get the same benefit from book reading. While reading books, especially challenging ones, you will find yourself exposed to many new words you wouldn’t be otherwise.

 

Gives you a glimpse into other cultures and places – What is your favorite vacation spot? I would bet you read a lot about that destination. The more information the better. Books can expand your horizons by letting you see what other cities and countries have to offer before you visit them.

 

Improves concentration and focus – Like I pointed out before, reading books takes brain power. It requires you to focus on what you are reading for long periods. Unlike magazines, Internet posts or e-Mails that might contain small chunks of information. Books tell the whole story. Since you must concentrate in order to read, like a muscle, you will get better at concentration.

 

Builds self-esteem – By reading more books, you become better informed and more of an expert on the topics you read about. This expertise translates into higher self esteem. Since you are so well read, people look to you for answers. Your feelings about yourself can only get better.

 

Improves memory – Many studies show if you don’t use your memory, you lose it. Crossword puzzles are an example of a word game that staves off Alzheimer’s. Reading, although not a game, helps you stretch your memory muscles in a similar way. Reading requires remembering details, facts and figures and in literature, plot lines, themes and characters.

 

Improves your discipline – Obviously, if 1 in 4 people don’t read one book per year, then there is a discipline issue. There may be many causes for people not reading books such as the “quips” of information you can get on the Internet. TV is also a major distracter. Making time to read is something we all know we should do, but who schedules book reading time every day? Very few… That’s why adding book reading to your daily schedule and sticking to it, improves discipline.

 

Learn anywhere – Books are portable. You can take them almost anywhere. As such, you can learn almost anywhere too.

 

Improves creativity – by reading more books and exposing yourself to new and more complete information, you will also be able to come up with more creative ideas. As a personal example, I read many, many books on IT Networking. So often, when IT Admins are stumped with a problem, I can come up with a creative (smack your head simple) solution that isn’t written anywhere. But the reason I can do that is because I have read so many books on the subject, I can combine lessons from all of them into new solutions.

 

Gives you something to talk about – Have you ever run out of stuff to talk about with your best friend, wife or husband? This can be uncomfortable. It might even make married couples wonder if their marriage is in trouble. However, if you read a lot of books, you’ll always have something to talk about. You can discuss various plots in the novels you read, you can discuss the stuff you are learning in the business books you are reading as well. The possibilities of sharing are endless.

 

Books are inexpensive entertainment – What’s the average price of a movie ticket these days? $8 – $10? You can buy a paperback for that price and be entertained for many hours more. If you have a used bookstore nearby, you can get them even cheaper.Tip: Once you make reading a habit, you’ll enjoy reading the books in your chosen career as well.

 

You can learn at your own pace – Where formal education requires time commitments, books have no late-bells or hourly commitments. So you can learn at your own pace when you read books.

 

New mental associations – I touched on this above. As you read more books the depth and breadth of your knowledge expands and your ability to form new associations increases. In reading a book to discover the solution to one problem, you find the solution to others you may not have considered.

 

Improves your reasoning skills – Books for professionals contain arguments for or against the actions within. A book on cooking argues that Chili powder goes well with beef and goes poorly with ice-cream. A book on building a business argues that testing an idea for profitability before setting up is a smart strategy and argues against just barreling forward with the idea without testing.

 

You too will be able to reason better with the knowledge you gain. Some of the arguments will rub off on you. Others you will argue against. Regardless, you’ll be reasoning better.

 

Builds your expertise – Brian Tracy has said one way to become an expert in your chosen field is to read 100 books on the subject. He also said by continuing the same for 5 years you’ll become an international expert. With the Internet and blogs, you could hone that time down to 2-3 years if you follow through.

 

Saves money – Apart from saving money on entertainment expenses. Reading books that help you develop your skills saves money. Reading books on how someone went bankrupt will be a warning to you against repeating their mistakes. Reading a book on how to build your own backyard deck saves the expense of hiring a contractor.

 

Decreases mistakes – Although I would never suggest putting off an important goal because you fear making mistakes, it is still important to sharpen the saw (link to A.L. post). When you gather the deep and wide wisdom that books can provide, you are less apt to make mistakes.

 

You’ll discover surprises - As you read more books as a source of information, you’ll learn stuff you weren’t looking for. I’ve read many great quotes on life and love by reading books on marketing. I’ve learned facts about biology from reading about chemistry. Heck, I’ve picked up some facts about history while reading about programming. Since so many subjects intertwine it’s almost impossible not to learn something other than the book’s subject.

 

Decreased boredom – One of the rules I have is if I am feeling bored, I will pick up a book and start reading. What I’ve found by sticking to this is that I become interested in the book’s subject and stop being bored. I mean, if you’re bored anyway, you might as well be reading a good book, right?

 

Can change your life – How many times have you heard of a book changing someone’s life? For me, it was Your Erroneous Zones (link) by Wayne Dyer – which is the first self-development book I read. It opened my eyes to a whole new way of thinking that was not depressing and dull. It was the first step in my path of choosing my own life and being free of old habitual thought patterns.

 

Can help break a slump – Being in a slump is uncomfortable. If you are a writer, you call it writer’s block. If you are a salesperson, it’s called – not making a sale in 23 days. But a slump can be a crossroads. It might be you are wavering on your commitment to a particular project or (with marriage) person. Or a slump can be simply a lack of new ideas. Books are a great source of ideas, big and small. So if you find yourself in a slump, pick a book on the portion of your life you are slump-ing and get to reading!

 

Reduces stress - Many avid readers (including me) unwind by reading. Compared with the person who gets home from work and immediately turns on the TV news, you are going from work stress to crime stress. But it’s not just news. TV as a source of relaxation is too full of loud commercials and fast moving (often violent) images. If relaxation is something you want, turn off the TV or computer and pick up a book.

 

Gets you away from digital distractions – If you, like many others, feel overwhelmed with the flashing lights, beeps, boops and ring-a-dings that burn up our computing lives, then give books a chance. When you find some good books, you’ll find yourself drawn into the subject matter. You’ll want to spend more time reading. By spending more time reading books, you’ll have less time for the plethora of the digital gadgets begging for our attention.

 

You’ll make more money - If you make a serious effort to read in your chosen career, your expertise in that specialty will increase. As you become more specialized and learned, you join a smaller group of more qualified people. By being part of the small few with the highest level knowledge your pay will increase. It’s simple supply and demand.

 

The book is always better than the movie – except for perhaps No Country for Old Men. :)

 
     

 

How to Support an Author

By on October 7, 2012

 

“A barista spends 3 minutes making you a $6 latte, you tip her. A writer spends a year writing a book; and you complain that $4.99 is too high”. That line is from a tweet that has gotten over – get this — 4000 responses.

Why?

No one knows how to support an author. So, every author feels slighted. And every friend is simply … stumped.

This is because we lack the social conventions for how to support authors. If an entrepreneur shares a Kickstarter campaign, you break out the Paypal account because, of course, you want to help someone pursue their passions. If a colleague is doing a breast-cancer walk or leukemia team-in-training run, you know what to do. If a friend loses a parent, you know to send a card or flowers. If someone shares they are having a baby, you slap the dad on the back, wish the new parents luck (and sleep), and find some ridiculously cute outfit to gift.

But what to do when a friend, or even someone you know only on Twitter publishes a book? What if you don’t care about this topic? What if you think you have that domain covered since, you too, are an expert. What if you are just not a reader?

It is perplexing to know what to do since are no norms, mostly because being an author is rare. And – while most people would never want to admit this in public – they would rather be jealous of another person crossing off a bucket list item rather than get excited for them or support them.

But authors do need your help. They need it is small ways and large and since I have several great friends with books in the near future – books worth reading and supporting, I’m going to write a primer for how to support an author.

  • Buy 1. Or 2. Would you buy this person a $4 coffee at Starbucks or a burger lunch, then buy the same-priced book. Don’t worry if you won’t read it. Think of it as a tip jar for someone who cares enough to sit in hunched over a computer keyboard to capture an idea they think matters. As a broad society, we don’t honor ideas since they are seemingly free online. But I think we should honor authors with their ideas, because of the the love that someone is showing to create, or elaborate ideas that matter.
  • Read it. But, don’t worry about reading all of it. Just read the first few pages. Most books actually suck. Truly. They lack narrative and flow and business books especially bring out a desire to get some gasoline and matches. So, give yourself permission to stop after page 5 or 6 if you’re not feeling it. But read those few pages so you can say something like “I read about x idea; what made you think of that …” You don’t have to say you like it. Your goal is show you care about the author, and learn why they care about the topic so you can be a better friend.
  • Plug it. If you use Facebook and Twitter, recommend it by choosing a section you value. (This assumes you like it or at least a part of it.)
  • Review it.If you happened to receive an early review copy of a book, take a few minutes to look it over, and read for 20 minutes to see if you can write a review with some enthusiasm. In fact, mark your calendar for when the book will be released and do it on the day-of. Either Goodreads or Amazon are great places to do a review. Early book reviews REALLY matter. Even if you hate the work, write a negative review that says “this book is not for you if you are x”. But do add a voice into the mix. The number of reviewers has a strong correlation to others considering it. And even your hating it might help others know it is perfect for their situation.
  • Blog It. If you are an influential person in a particular domain, or you already blog somewhere, write about it. But don’t do some generic book review. Instead, apply one specific idea to your field. And, again, don’t wait. Do it as soon as book release as possible because it really does make a difference to building momentum and boosts the author when he or she is most likely to be anxious.
  • Gift it. When Nancy Duarte‘s (now friend, then colleague) 1st book came out, I went out and bought 10 copies, and then personally mailed it to some seasoned 10 corporate execs who really needed to know about presenting better. I never asked Nancy for free copies or anything. In fact I don’t think Nancy ever knew I did that. I just bought copies and sent them to people who I thought might like to know her ideas. That took time, and envelopes, and mailing.Today, all it takes to gift a book is an email address, and you don’t have to pay for it, if they don’t download it. If you like a book, think of 5 people who should see it, and send it to them. It is a great way to show you care about the person you’re sending it to let alone the author. Use it to build your relationships.
  • Share It. Talk about it. Throw a salon for the author. We don’t share those people who are not already known because we are putting ourselves at risk. So, if you are one of those rare people who can spot a good idea without it already being blessed by those in authority … then share and advance that idea.It takes such an effort to get an idea known. There are authors who really want to be known (for their own Sally Field’s moment), and that’s fine.

    But I’m talking about authors whose ideas can change how something works. It’s is what Brene Brown is doing by teaching the role of courage in work and relationships. It is what Kevin Kelly teaches us about network effects. It is what Clay Shirky or Don Tapscott teach us when they talks about economic effects of openness. Or what Rita McGrath is teaching with her more dynamic approach to strategy. Those issues are not just about the person. It is about ideas that matter.

    This is the point: It is Not About Authors; It is About Ideas. Authors create to pursue an idea. Because I believe that Human Beings can be / need to be fully alive at work, I pursue this idea in now 2 books. I believe that purpose and profits don’t need to be held as opposites. That people and performance are deeply tied, and not some fluffy leadership stuff. That strategy as we’ve known it is dead, to be replaced by connected individuals connected by purpose. Are these ideas I believe in commonly held beliefs? Something most management theorists espouse? No. Not.At.All. Are these ideas even that most executives apply? No. Not.At.All.

    Yet, if people who “get it” don’t spread the idea because they already agree, then the people who need the idea never hear of it because the idea doesn’t get shared. And, of course, it’s not already approved by those in power, because those folks are advocating old architectures and constructs that limit the human ability to thrive. This is why it’s tough being an author if you have a disruptive idea.

    For any new idea, it needs supporters that share. Without sharing, nothing changes. Without support, ideas that matter die. Which is why authors need you to step up.

Thank You. Your Support Means a Lot to Us Authors.

We authors don’t often know to ask for your help, or we worry you think we’re trying to win some popularity contest. But – really – what we want is what you want: ideas that matter to be seen in the world. Any, and all help you give to promote the idea is so valuable. Don’t discount your role. However small. It makes a difference. So thanks, in advance.

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