“Meta? Maybe? SFX & A.S.M.R. Magic? — DEFINITELY!”

Let me start by saying two things; 

1)  if you didn’t know Harris County Public Library had its own Podcast called, “Using our Library Voices,” then you are in a crowd that is entirely too large, and  

2) If you don’t check out their latest episode, “The Journey of Your Book”  then you are cheating yourself out of a very unique, and very enjoyable audio experience!  

I know, I know, the podcast landscape cluttered with lots of “D” list celebrities and cranky loners in their mother’s basements so it can be difficult to find a unique voice when you’re looking for something to make your morning commute or elliptical workout go by faster.  This is where one of HCPL’s best kept secrets stands out.   

“Using our Library Voices” - creates conversation for listeners to dive deeper into the subjects we discuss. In each episode, librarians will explore a theme with the resources available to you at the library. We aim to spark a dialogue, spread a little knowledge, and add some entertainment to your day with our podcast. 

Please allow me to introduce to you, The HCPL Podcast Team and their monthly podcast, “Using our Library Voices.“  For starters, it is just that, a team of library professionals who each bring a vast base of reference experience and talents to the table when crafting their monthly opus.  And if by some chance they don’t happen to be experts in whatever subject they are investigating - they bring in people who can speak from a place of authority on subjects ranging from a local Rabbi during Jewish American Heritage Month to a nationally touring performer for Black History Month.  From Comicpalooza to Library True Crime, the podcast team continually produces shows that not only inform but entertain. 

For this month’s show I had the chance to talk with Beth Krippel.   In addition to being a member of the HCPL Podcast Team, she also is the narrator of this month’s episode, “The Journey of Your book.”  

Q: How did the idea for this podcast episode come about and how would you describe it? 

A:  We wanted to share with the public more details about the basic functions of HCPL in a fun way, and the members of the podcast team began pitching the idea of a nature documentary with the Books as the wild creature we were following.  And as for a description, the library world meets Mutual of Omaha’s “Wild Kingdom.” 

Q: The choice of sound effects and music are spot-on.  They really paint a picture for the listener; was it difficult to find or create the perfect sounds?  

A: Many of the podcast team should add “Foley” work to their resumes.  Sometimes the real thing works best, so our staff just recorded when they emptied the book drop or scanned a book.  And then other times we just needed to find someone to record the dropping of a cardboard box to take the place of something else, like stacking tubs.    When it came to the music, we read the script and asked ourselves questions like, “Does this section need forward momentum?” or “Do we want to evoke a particular feeling or memory in this part?”  Then it was just a matter of finding the right music to answer those questions. 

 Q: Any thoughts on where you might think the Podcast team will take any future programs, artistically?  

A: Well, we have done live events and scripted events, interviews and conversations.... I don’t know, do you think we should do a musical episode?   


I think I can speak for all the Podcast fans when I say, “100% Yes! - Please do a Musical!” 

You can get to all the episodes we discussed in this article and many others by “Clicking Here.” 

And if music or singing isn’t your thing but you have something to share or an idea for an episode, please let the podcast team know with an email at Podcast@hcpl.net